Wikipedia:Reference desk/Archives/Humanities/2011 April 24

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April 24[edit]

US: friend/family/acquaintance in prison[edit]

With an incarceration rate in the US as high as it is, is it common for Americans to know someone who served time, who is serving time or who is on parole? 212.169.184.23 (talk) 00:03, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

It depends on the community. There are certain subpopulations which have an incarceration rate which is much higher than others, and that skews the national average. I don't know anyone who has ever been in prison, or been convicted of anything more serious than a moving violation. I would suspect what you would find is that among some people, your statement would be true, but for most people it isn't. --Jayron32 00:06, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
You don't know or you think that you don't know? There are unknown unknowns. Even wealthy people who got an expensive college education might well know people who take drugs every now and then, and that served time as a consequence. 212.169.184.23 (talk) 00:12, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
This graph will answer a lot of your questions. --Jayron32 00:17, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
The graph in isolation doesn't tell us that Blacks, Latinos and Whites live in separate communities, which I guess you're also telling us. HiLo48 (talk) 00:29, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
It's all anecdotal, I reckon. I can think of kids from high school, college and even some co-workers that went to jail or even prison, for various things... nearly all of them white-like-me. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 01:12, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I remember reading about a teacher who was shocked when she started teaching in an inner-city school and asked if the students knew someone who was (or maybe had been) in prison. Half of the kids raised their hands. It's likely that most suburbanites don't know anyone who is in prison. -- Mwalcoff (talk) 01:30, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I suppose we'd need a further variable here. Probably big city dwellers, who happen to know more people and live in an environment with higher criminality, potentially know more people serving time and ex-convicts. 212.169.184.23 (talk) 01:42, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
212 has an important point. It's likely that among some subpopulations (referring to some of the above the wealthy and suburbnites for example) there is far greater likelihood of hiding such a history and of those around not asking if there are details which suggest such a possibility. 'People don't talk about such things in polite company' as they say. (This doesn't of course change the fact there are also much higher incarceration rates among some subpopulations mostly those who are more willing to talk about it. Nor am I suggesting Jayron32 does know someone who has gone to prison. ) In a relation fashion, someone who has gone to prison is more likely to be ostracised in some subpopulations/communities meaning less such people would know them particularly if you only count current acquitance. Of course that means on the flipside, particularly for some more serious crimes some people are more likely to try and find out if there is something to suggest a historic incarceration. Nil Einne (talk) 06:20, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Here in Australia I guess we don't boast about current family and acquaintances in prison, but it's become very fashionable to demonstrate that one has a convict ancestor. HiLo48 (talk) 06:55, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
The point that there may be ex-cons around us who we don't know are ex-cons is an important one. I've worked around someone for ~6 years who only last year did I find out had been convicted of child molestation. They're on the state's sex offender web site but I hadn't checked it because I don't have a specific need (e.g. no kids) Dismas|(talk) 07:06, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
It's important to remember that imprisonment in the U.S. has a strong racial bias and a strong socioeconomic bias. I think it's 1 in 9 black men in prison - unless that's increased again. Also, some of the same groups frequently imprisoned have much larger families. Also, the wealthy go to trial first, and then to prison if they're unlucky - the poor go to prison first, then eventually plead out to "time served" at the trial. Wnt (talk) 07:07, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
"strong racial bias" ... Citation, please? ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 20:51, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Our article on incarceration in the United States contains statistics that breakdown incarceration rates by ethnicity/race. These statistics do show that the proportion of black males incarcerated is much higher than the proportions for other ethnic groups. However, it is nowhere near 1 in 9; across the US as a whole, 4,749 per 100,000 black males were incarcerated in 2009, which is roughly 1 in 21. Please, let's make a better attempt to get our facts and figures in the right ballpark on the ref desks, especially on controversial issues. Gandalf61 (talk) 09:45, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Sorry, 1 in 9 young black males is currently in jail or prison.[1] Wnt (talk) 23:41, 29 April 2011 (UTC)

I live in the white middle class suburbs, and I know people who have served time, someone who is serving time, and someone who is on parole. And I believe that many folks who know these prisoners/ex-prisoners have no idea that the person ever served time. These are things that rarely get talked about. I find it hard to imagine that there are Americans that don't know anyone who has served time, as long as you include casual acquaintances (maybe that guy at the gas station you chat with in the morning) and past acquaintances (that guy from high school you haven't seen in years). —Kevin Myers 07:53, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

This question also depends on what you mean by "knowing someone". For example, a person I vaguely knew in high school, but never more than passingly, went to prison for robbing an armored car in Las Vegas, of all things. Sadly, her Wikipedia page was deleted, because she was only notable for one thing, per WP:BLP1E. Guess what the one thing was? Anyway, did I know her? ...maybe? Pfly (talk) 09:03, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
In my experience as a white middle class American, I don't personally come into contact with anyone on a regular basis that I know has been in Jail. There have been a few people that I've been acquainted with over the years that I know had been in jail. Off the top of my head I've only been close enough with one former prisoner to actually ask him questions about Jail. I went to a very middle class white college and in one Psychology class (talking about the Stanford Prison Experiment, I think) one of the students mentioned that he had done a stint in jail. The entire class seemed pretty shocked. Qrsdogg (talk) 17:13, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
In my experience as a white middle class American, I didn't personally know anyone who had ever been in jail either until I moved to Germany - but here I do know someone who spent several years in prison, and briefly met someone else who spent a year or two there. (I don't count spending a few hours in a drunk tank as being "in jail", which happened to someone I know, nor do I count the prisoners I met when I participated in my church's prison visiting program.) —Angr (talk) 17:23, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Is it possible that you did no such people, but they kept that part of their past a secret? HiLo48 (talk) 23:31, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I suppose it is possible. Come to think of it, even the people in Germany didn't tell me themselves that they had been in jail; someone else told me. —Angr (talk) 09:51, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
@ HiLo: If there are "no such people", no secrets are being kept. :) -- Jack of Oz [your turn] 10:13, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
The OP asked about prison, not jail. The words are not synonymous in the US (see intro of prison). Many more Americans would presumably answer "yes" if jail time is included in the question. I know people who have spent some time in the county jail for DUI and similar offenses. They've been to jail, not prison. —Kevin Myers 14:09, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

Also, people don't necessarily live in the same country throughout their entire life. Perhaps in US this factor isn't so significant for prison rates, but in a country like Sweden you will find quite a few middle-aged white collar academics who came to the country as political refugees, out of whom quite many have prison experiences from political struggles in their home countries. --Soman (talk) 23:49, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

According to this source, more than 10% of black men in the United States between the ages of 25 and 29 are incarcerated, as opposed to just over 1% of white men. According to this source, more than one quarter of black men are likely to be incarcerated at some point in their lives, versus just over 4% of white men. Therefore, given persistently high social segregation in the United States, I think we can say that most American blacks know of someone who has been incarcerated, whereas many or most white people, especially those with higher socioeconomic status, are likely not to know of anyone who has been incarcerated. (By high social segregation, and I'm afraid this is OR, I mean that, outside of work, most friends and family members of most white people are white, and the converse applies to most black people. Of course, many white people have black friends or even family members, and vice versa, but people of a different race are still somewhat the exception in most white people's social circles.) Speaking anecdotally for myself (I am white), I personally know only one person who has been incarcerated, and he happens to be a black friend of mine. It may be that others in my workplace or in my casual acquaintance have been incarcerated without my knowing it. Marco polo (talk) 17:54, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for coming up with those sources. Those figures give me a rather different interpretation than yours. The 4% figure for white males means that if the average white American knows 100 white guys, at least 4 of them on average will be incarcerated at some point in their lives. How many white guys does the average American know? I guess it depends on your definition of "know", but I knew more than 100 guys in high school, more than 100 guys in the military, probably about 100 guys through work over the years, not including my extended family, my other friends, their families whom I somewhat "know", etc. That's a large pool of guys I "know", and, since I'm a bookish nerd, I probably know fewer people than average. If I know or have known 400 guys, chances are about 15 or so of them have been or will be incarcerated. This leads me to believe that, given a wide definition of "know", the average white American has a high probability of knowing (or eventually knowing) someone who has been incarcerated. If you're on the young side, this pool of guys you know probably hasn't gotten around to doing their share of crimes yet. —Kevin Myers 22:23, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

I was raised in an urban ghetto. Almost everyone had some link to someone serving time. It was a cultural expectation. College allowed me to become middle class. No one in my present circle would ever think of being imprisoned. Our prison rate isn't the worse factor. The class distinctions make it much worse. No studies have shown that a gene pool of African-American or Latino has any correlation to crime. I've watched the NYPD whom I greatly respect talk to me in an avuncular manner. A different tone is used with minorities. Isn't there a famous quote in Les Miserables about the rich people's exposure to stealing good for a hungry family vs. that of a poor one. Sadly, I believe some of the underclass deserves to be in prison. Which came first?75Janice (talk) 02:02, 26 April 2011 (UTC)75Janice

I was raised in an area generally considered to be a very safe, well-educated part of town of the Southern USA. At least two of my high-school classmates have been in jail on at least one occasion (a kid spent one night for misdemeanor breaking and entering in one case, and a girl in one of my classes has just begun a lengthy sentence for 2nd degree murder). I am no longer in high school (I'm not quite twenty). I know somebody in a different state who has been in and out of jail, and I have had occasion to meet a few others who have been jailed for such things as protests or drunk driving. When I was in the Tremé district of New Orleans, there were enough men in jail that the family dynamics were actually changed, according to the people who were showing us around. It really depends on location and circumstances, I guess. Falconusp t c 05:23, 26 April 2011 (UTC)
I'm a white, middle-class American suburbanite (well, more rural than suburb) and I know several extended family members who have been/are in jail. Mostly cousins and an uncle (who has now passed) that repeatedly got arrested for possession of controlled substances or petty theft (to support their habit).
I think my sister once got arrested for protesting at a nuclear power plant but not charged & didn't spend time in jail. That was her college neo-hippie days. Awesome FaceThe Hand That Feeds You:Bite 20:50, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

The rape penalty[edit]

It is well known that prison rape is very widespread in harsh prisons in the U.S.4.5% per year, 2005 and other countries. It is used by gangs to keep their members in line - which they do so far more effectively than prison authorities. Pundits routinely mention it as the real penalty for crime - without rape, a prison is a mere "country club" where prisoners are guaranteed "three squares a day". It can instantly transform the fearsome "vor v zakone" into the gentle "petukh".

  • Has anyone seriously proposed using measured and deliberate rape under governmental control as a means of correction, to supplement or replace a prison term?
  • Has the recidivism rate of raped vs. non-raped prisoners been compared?
  • Is rape + a shorter prison term viewed as less humane than a longer prison term? Why?
  • Is there a legal basis to declare that the rape penalty is an inhumane punishment, in jurisdictions that permit the death penalty?

Wnt (talk) 07:46, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

I don't believe rape is very widespread in some prisons. Apparently, movies gave us the impression that it could happen all the time, but it doesn't. Equally, I don't believe that without rape a prison is a country club. Just think about all the things you are missing: family, friends, going out. 212.169.187.230 (talk) 11:05, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Our article, Prison rape, says about 2% of inmates in the US are raped. Higher statistics have also been quoted, but it seems they aren't particularly reliable. 2% is still pretty high, though. Once you restrict it to "harsh prisons" (to use the OP's term) it will obviously be much higher. --Tango (talk) 13:03, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I don't know how this study was crafted. Good statistics would be choosing prisoners absolutely at random. However, if you go to a max-security prison, full of predators, full of lifers, then your data is not random anymore. 212.169.188.3 (talk) 13:38, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Sure it is. It's a random selection of people serving life sentences in a maximum security prison. If those are the people you are studying, that's a perfectly good sample. --Tango (talk) 14:05, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Well, yes. But randomly analyzing date on rape among lifers in a max-security prison won't allow you to jump to the conclusion that 2% of inmates in the US were raped. So, either we know how this (and other) statistics were produced, or we end up dealing with meaningless numbers. 212.169.188.3 (talk) 15:05, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
The 2% figure actually comes from a meta-analysis of several studies. I haven't read the paper, but hopefully whoever wrote it knows about good sampling techniques. You are right, though, that we should always be careful using statistics without knowing the methodology. --Tango (talk) 16:08, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Rape as punishment is fairly common is some parts of the world for women that are accused of dishonouring their family (by marrying without permission or having sex outside marriage, usually - sometimes that includes being the victim of rape). Such punishments are handed down by "village elders" and similar rather than formal state judicial systems, though. --Tango (talk) 13:03, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm. Which "parts of the world" do you have in mind ? And do you have a source for that - specifically, one that says that this type of behaviour by "village elders" is "fairly common", as opposed to isolated incidents ? Gandalf61 (talk) 14:17, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
This BBC News article talks about such an attack in Pakistan. It says "Hundreds of women are killed or injured in honour attacks each year." although it doesn't say how many of those are rapes. It also says that most such attacks aren't reported, so it is probably difficult to get accurate statistics. (The article is from 2005 - it is possible that Pakistani government has managed to improve the situation since then. I don't know.) --Tango (talk) 15:10, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Well, my point is that a report of one incident from six years ago does not justify your assertion that this practice is "fairly common". It is not pleasant to see another culture casually accused of barbaric atrosities without a sound factual basis. This how racial, religious and cultural stereotypes get thoughtlessly propogated. Gandalf61 (talk) 16:28, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
That article wasn't the source for my statement, it just happened to be the first reliable source on a Google search. My source is years of watching the news and seeing numerous stories like the one described in that article. I haven't been able to find any statistics on honour rapes, but there are plenty on honour killings, which are at least as barbaric. These things really happen, it isn't just a stereotype. --Tango (talk) 17:37, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Yes, honour killings do, sadly, happen. Usually they are commited by a member of the victim's family. Our article says that there were 4,000 women victims of honour killings over the course of 6 years in Pakistan - a country with a population of 170 million. I fail to see how this justifies your casual assertion that punishment rapes by village elders in Pakistan are "fairly common". If you watch the news through prejudiced eyes then you will tend to remember those reports that reinforce those prejudices. May I suggest you try to develop a less distorted and more balanced view of other cultures. Gandalf61 (talk) 17:57, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I didn't say it was fairly common in Pakistani villages. I said there were parts of the world where it is fairly common. Certain areas of Pakistan are among those parts, but I never suggested it was the whole of Pakistan. In those areas where it does happen, it is fairly common. By that, I mean it is an accepted part of everyday life by many (the news article I cited backs that up very clear). (And, since you are clearly very keen on misinterpreting everything I say to make me out to be some kind of bigot, I will clarify that by "everyday life" I do not mean to suggest that it happens every day.) --Tango (talk) 11:10, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
The single, six-year old news report that you cited says that "Hundreds of women are killed or injured in honour attacks each year"; this is, sadly, true. However, I have no idea how you extrapolate from that to claiming that punishment rape by village elders in "certain areas of Pakistan" is "fairly common" and is "an accepted part of everyday life" (your words). You admit that you can find no statistics about your so-called "honour rapes", yet you persist in repeating and embellishing your crude and baseless allegations. I am saddened and disappointed to see such behaviour from an experienced Wikipedia editor. Gandalf61 (talk) 12:10, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
(e/c)I can't believe government sanctioned rape is legal internationally. See also Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 for the US. On another note, from prison rape "In 2001, Human Rights Watch estimated that at least 140,000 inmates in the US had been raped while incarcerated ... a meta-analysis published in 2004 found a prevalence rate of 1.91% ... it suggests that raped inmates number 43,800." Looking at war rape, "The Rome Statute Explanatory Memorandum, which defines the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court, recognises rape [as a] crime against humanity if the action is part of a widespread or systematic practice." This extract doesn't seem to restrict it to war practices, although I haven't looked it up. In other words, it'll never happen. Imagine public opinion on the issue. So it's arbitrary whether it would work; so would shooting every prisoner. Grandiose (me, talk, contribs) 13:13, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Assuming that the U.S. is culturally incapable of ending the War on Drugs, and assuming parallel development with China during the Opium Wars, within 50 years someone like the Zetas or the Sinaloas should be formally dictating policy to the White House. At such time it seems possible that many of their prison practices will become formal institutions of the national culture. The question is, does the gang's rape penalty actually work, or is it simply another quasi-religious sacrificial ceremony? Wnt (talk) 17:19, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I still see no basis for rape ever being institutionalised, given the historical background. Regardless, it's impossible to know whether it would work. Assuming it runs at a couple of percent of inmates, scaling it up to what I'd exepct to be 25-50% institutionalised is a huge jump, which could have numerous effects. If it is about power, then obviously scaling up makes a lot of difference, because of the complexity of power holders it creates. Similarly, the fact these are government mandated punishments also makes a difference. [If a man came up to you in the street and demanded 20% of your income, you'd scream; if the government does it, it's taxation.] No studies have been run, and those examining rape expose a very complex world. So we can't say, and attempts to do so will be arguments from ignorance, there simply isn't enough information to make a reasonable judgement. Grandiose (me, talk, contribs) 17:53, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Wnt, statements like "It is very well known that" followed by no citations, and then a series of responses that suggest it is not "very well known" at all and "assuming the U.S. is culturally incapable", also without citation, are all continuing invitations to debate a premise that has no support. To continue this thread is to bear off into a fantasy land. Bielle (talk) 17:51, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
I added a reference for the first "well known" - I don't see anywhere that I said "not well known". At 4.5% per year, even if as the ref I found said, most of the incidents are committed by guards (which I hadn't been aware of), rape is still as common a penalty for prison inmates to impose as prison is in general society. As for the War on Drugs, extrapolating that one century of stupidity will be followed by another is not a great reach. Wnt (talk) 19:28, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Collapse - executions are not relevant to prison terms - thus not relevant to the OP + unsourced

In both 1st-century A.D. Rome and 1980's Iran, there was no basis in law for executing a girl who was a virgin, so in certain notorious cases where it was deemed expedient to execute girls, the executioner raped the girl so she wouldn't be a virgin when she was killed... AnonMoos (talk) 22:27, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

Are you able to cite a reliable published source or a Wikipedia article? Your comment about 1980's Iran looks suspiciously like some anti-Islam propaganda I have seen. Dolphin (t) 03:41, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
It comes from news accounts of the time. I seem to remember that I heard it over KCRW... AnonMoos (talk) 07:15, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Your assertion is not completely unsourced: according to Free Republic, the story is true. See here: 3w freerepublic . com + focus/f-news/2295871/posts (the site is blacklisted by wikipedia). 80.58.205.34 (talk) 16:41, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Let's see - that's a discussion on a right-wing internet forum which also includes the comment "The Obama Administration stands firmly with the rapists of children and Persia". So it's about as far from being a reliable source as you can get. Gandalf61 (talk) 17:05, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Free Republic is just a discussion forum, like Yahoo Answers. You can find any sort of right-wing stuff posted there, sometimes at the level of conspiracy theories, other times simply conservative. Quest09 (talk) 17:37, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
For the sake of having a meaningful debate, let's assume AnonMoos was correct when he stated in certain notorious cases ... Does that entitle Wikipedia to state In 1980s Iran ...? I don't think so. It is wilfully misleading to take a minor and insignificant fact and use it as justification for some generalization applied to a large population or a whole nation or ethnic group. For example, in any country there is a small number of cases each year in which new-born children are murdered. The evidence of that small number of cases does not justify statements such as in country X they murder children shortly after birth. Despite that, we regularly see examples where people make a suspiciously generalized and inaccurate allegation, but when challenged they offer evidence that fails to substantiate the broad and generalized nature of the allegation. Dolphin (t) 03:12, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

Whatever -- I don't know with absolutely 100% confidence that it's true, but it has been reported by somewhat reliable sources in the past, and whether it's true or false, it was not invented by neocons. Put "Flora Owrangi" into Google to turn up one reported case... AnonMoos (talk) 03:10, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

You began with In 1980s Iran ... but under cross-examination you have reduced it to one reported case. This is not appropriate on the Wikipedia Reference Desk. Dolphin (t) 03:14, 26 April 2011 (UTC)

plz. give me contact no. of publisher[edit]

Book Name- chayalispatal

Publisher- Vidhyadhar Sahu, Cuttuck

Author Name- achutananddas —Preceding unsigned comment added by 123.237.49.236 (talk) 11:11, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

It seems you mean Cuttack, not Cuttuck. Google isn't finding much of use, though. Does the book have an ISBN? When was it published? Can you write the book and author names more carefully? Neither seems to exist. Do you perhaps mean the poet Acyutananda? It is possible you won't find anything, since the publisher may not still be in business (what I have been able to find is all references to books published at least 15 years ago). --Tango (talk) 14:02, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Do note that "Vidyadhar Sahu" ought to be the name of an individual, not a company. One mention of an individual with that name on internet, http://www.hindu.com/2008/09/07/stories/2008090754120900.htm . --Soman (talk) 23:59, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I got the same impression, although it is possible it's a publishing company founded by someone of that name. Plenty of companies are named after their founders. --Tango (talk) 11:12, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

Canadian Election 2008 Bangladeshi-Canadian candidates[edit]

How many candidates of Canadian Election 2008 were Bangladeshi-Canadian, political party by wise? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.29.35.211 (talk) 15:55, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

I'm also Canadian but I don't know of any such people and I didn't turn up any in a quick Google search. It may be that there were none. Our Bangladeshi Canadian article says there are only 25,000 or so members of the community. That's about 1 in 1000 Canadians. There were only 1530 party affiliated candidates in the 2008 Canadian election. If they were represented to their proportion in the general population that would only be one or two. People from visible minority and immigrant communities tend to have a tougher time getting nominations, especially for larger parties. So the number is probably small and there's unlikely to be any discussion of it outside of that particular community. --JGGardiner (talk) 09:08, 27 April 2011 (UTC)

Democrat Presidents of the deep south[edit]

How Many presidents of US were southerners and democrats? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 70.29.35.211 (talk) 19:26, 24 April 2011 (UTC)

That's all of them. --Jayron32 19:43, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Not necessarily. Although he was later president of Princeton University and Governor of New Jersey, Thomas Woodrow Wilson (1913-21) was a Virginian both by birth and in many ways in spirit. Like Andrew Johnson, John Tyler of Virginia (1841-45) was a Democrat who ran against the Democratic ticket and then ascended to the Presidency (succeeding William Henry Harrison of the Whigs). Once he was in the Presidency, the Whigs in Congress very soon broke with him on issues such as the tariff, and expelled him from the Whig Party. Tyler wanted to run for a full term at the next election in 1844, but had no luck in winning back support from the Democratic Party he'd run against in 1840, nor in creating a third, Presidential party. [Actually, Andrew Johnson has a stronger claim than Tyler to having stayed a Democrat; the War Democrats who supported the Lincoln-Johnson ticket in 1864 insisted on calling themselves Union Democrats and not Unionists or Republicans.] And Harry S. Truman (1945-53) was from Missouri, a border state but not one in the Deep South.
The list of clearly northern Democratic Presidents is probably no longer than that of southern ones:
  1. Martin Van Buren (New York) 1837-41
  2. Franklin Pierce (New Hampshire) 1853-57
  3. James Buchanan (Pennsylvania) 1857-61
  4. Stephen Grover Cleveland (New York) 1885-89 and 1893-97
  5. Franklin D. Roosevelt (New York) 1933-45
  6. John F. Kennedy (Massachusetts) 1961-63
  7. Barack Obama (Illinois, also Hawaii & Kansas) 2009-
If you believe that the disputed Election of 1876 was stolen you could add Samuel J. Tilden of New York to the northern list. If you believe that the disputed Election of 2000 was stolen, you could add Al Gore of Tennessee to the southern list.
And if you consider members of the Democratic-Republican Party to be Democrats, then you could add these southern Democratic presidents:
  1. Thomas Jefferson (Virginia) 1801-09
  2. James Madison (Virginia) 1809-17
  3. James Monroe (Virginia) 1817-25
If you consider Jefferson to have been improperly elected President by a corrupt bargain in 1800, then you could add Aaron Burr of New York (who won the same number of Electoral Votes as Jefferson) to the northern list. In the disputed Election of 1824, all the candidates were members of the Democratic-Republican party. Since none of them won a majority in the Electoral College, the U.S. House of Representatives elected John Quincy Adams of Massachusetts (who later became a Whig) over Andrew Jackson (who won more popular votes than Adams) in what some consider to be another corrupt bargain. If you consider J.Q. Adams (portrayed by Anthony Hopkins in the film Amistad) to have been both a Democrat and properly elected, then you can add him to the list of northern Democrats. —— Shakescene (talk) 21:21, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Obama being born in Hawaii, Kansas and Illinois tells us more than we need to know about his mother's anatomy - especially when you consider he was also born in Kenya and Indonesia. This compares favorably with Lincoln, who "was born in 3 states, and also in 2 cabins: the original, and the reconstructed." ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 21:35, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Regarding those disputed elections: Tilden, Gore and Burr and Adams might be able to claim that they should have become president, but the fact remains that they did not become president. Whatever the merits of their claims, presidential history is not going to be rewritten (plus, 3 2 of them are long dead). -- Jack of Oz [your turn] 21:34, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Regarding your parenthetical comment, there's even been some question about Gore. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 21:37, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Jack (out in the land whose Labor Party still disputes Gough Whitlam's dismissal by Gov.-Gen. Sir John Kerr), unless you're planning to rewrite American history yourself, John Quincy Adams did become President in 1824, over the protests of the Jacksonians. If, unlike the Jacksonians, you accept Adams' presidency (1825-29), then the question is whether you consider him to be a Democrat; if so, then he's a northern one. In 1828, Adams ran for re-election as a National Republican, but lost to Andrew Jackson (Democratic or Democratic-Republican). The National Republican Party later became the Whigs. —— Shakescene (talk) 23:43, 24 April 2011 (UTC)
Quite right. I've amended my post. Re Whitlam/Kerr: nobody has ever disputed Kerr did dismiss Whitlam and commission Fraser. But that's the point: the ALP will never accept that he should have done it, whatever reserve powers he may have held. Kerr's long dead now, but even if he could be revived and made to acknowledge he would have chosen a different solution if he had his time over, the fact remains he's not going to have his time over, and history is not going to change. -- Jack of Oz [your turn] 03:34, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
You're both partially right. J.Q. Adams was the incumbent, and "should have become" President again, as per one side of the argument. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 03:46, 25 April 2011 (UTCere)
(massive edit conflict) No, in 1824, James Monroe was the retiring incumbent. As his two-term Vice-President, Daniel D. Tompkins also retired, this was one of those rare open-seat elections (like 2008 or 1928) where no candidate for President or VP had ever held either office. I confusingly mentioned 1828 not to mislead anyone (perish the thought!), but to indicate how hard it is to pin a party on J.Q. Adams (elected as a D-R in 1824 when every candidate was D-R, but running for re-election as a National Republican). —— Shakescene (talk) 06:31, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

Question from a foreigner here. The OP's question says "...deep south". Does that deep have a real meaning? Maybe leaving out, say, Virginia? Or...(what)? HiLo48 (talk) 04:09, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

To me, the term Deep South refers primarily to five states — Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia. I think the only presidents from those states (of any party) were Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. --Trovatore (talk) 04:16, 25 April 2011 (UTC) *
Virginia and the Carolinas we refer to as the "Shallow South" (not to their faces, though). ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 04:45, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Does that make Texas the "Up-to-your-armpits South"? --Jayron32 04:58, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Could be, although Texas doesn't like to be thought of as "the South". It's just "Texas". Regionally, they are of course in the South. Just call them Texans instead of Southerners, and all's swell. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 05:02, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
It seems that our Deep South article includes South Carolina and omits Arkansas. I'm not sure I agree; that's really not the way I remember it. To be fair, though, I've only driven through Arkansas once (was struck by how much the Clinton Library looks like a trailer — hey, no shame in living in a trailer, I've done it myself, but you'd think they might have thought about it) and have probably spent even less time in South Carolina.
Anyway, if our article's definition is accepted, we'd be down to just Carter. --Trovatore (talk) 05:34, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
I've always thought of the "Deep South" as places where people use bed linens for fashion; but then again I'm a Yankee (well, actually further north than the Yankees. More of a Red Sock) by birth, upbringing, and outlook, if not by accident of current residence. --Jayron32 05:44, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
"If you mow your lawn and find a car..."
OK, part of the problem here is that the OP, who's Canadian and may not know the difference, headed the section with "deep south", but the actual question merely specifies "southerners". As a northerner myself, I tend to equate "southern states" with "former slave states", which covers a lot more ground than the "deep" south. ←Baseball Bugs What's up, Doc? carrots→ 05:56, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Slavery was present throughout much of the US at one time or another. Calling the southern states the "former slave state" rather over-simplifies things. They were just the last to get rid of slavery. --Tango (talk) 11:22, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
That is a common claim that is beat forcefully into the heads of all American children, but it is not remotely true. Lincoln abolished slavery in the Confederacy before winning the war. Once the war was won, the ex-Confederacy still had slavery abolished. Then - after that - slavery was abolished in the rest of the United States. Directly after that, the government decided to revise history to claim that only stupid white southerners only ever owned slaves (not true) and that every slave ever owned was black (not true) and that the only reason they attacked the south was to free the blacks (not true) and that if it wasn't for the generous onslaught of the north, the southern states would still be knee-deep in mud, whipping slaves to pick a bale of cotton (not true - well, as far as I can tell). -- kainaw 13:01, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
It's also bullshit revisionism to claim that (as some try to imply) that slavery was not the central issue in the Civil War. To say that the economic and social conditions of the 19th century were complex is true; but people keep trying to push the idea that, had the U.S. never had slavery, the Civil War would have still happened. The history of the situation is inexorably tied to slavery, and it is quite impossible to understand fully why the Civil War took place if we ignore slavery as the central issue, and instead try to push it off into the corner as though it was a minor concern. Yes, slavery existed in every U.S. state at some time before the Civil War. It doesn't mean that it wasn't the central issue. Yes, there were major social and economic differences between the north and south that led to the south believing themeselves to be more dependent on slavery. That doesn't make slavery justified, or mean that it wasn't the big issue. Why was the south econimically different? Slavery. The war was about states rights. What single right were states of the south demanding? The right to determine for themselves if slavery was OK. Yes, the North was populated by hypocritical racists, many of whom could have cared less about the rights of black people. Doesn't mean that we do history any service by somehow minimizing the role that slavery played, not just in the Civil War, but in the entire political life of the United States for its first 60 years. Find me a congress where it was not a major issue. I'm quite tired of these arguements. To say it was complex, to admit that it wasn't as simple as the Good North saved America from the Bad South, is all true. But it is still all about slavery ultimately. --Jayron32 14:00, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
That rant is not based on the topic. The claim was that the south "were just the last to get rid of slavery." I rebutted that the Emancipation Proclamation freed slaves only in the Confederate states and it came before the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. I do not see how that is a claim that the war had nothing to do with slavery. -- kainaw 14:13, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
You seem to be overlooking the fact that many if not all northern states had individually abolished slavery long before the 13th amendment. The south was indeed the last to get rid of slavery. Abolition was, in the end, imposed upon the south by the north, despite decades of often skillful southern efforts to preserve the institution. —Kevin Myers 14:25, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
I am from Missouri. So, I know that Missouri ended slavery in 1865, two years after the Emancipation Proclamation. Missouri is not part of the south. So, the claim that the south was the last to abolish slavery is simply not true. If we need to add "except Missouri and ... and ... and ..." to exclude all the states that continued slavery until the 13th amendment, then the claim is just an attempt to rewrite history. -- kainaw 14:31, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
A few points: It is not true that every state had slavery... the states that were formed out of the North West Territories (Michigan for example) never had it. Also the Emancipation Proclamation (1863) only freed the slaves in those States that were in rebellion against the Union. It did not apply to the slave holding States (such as Maryland) that remained in the Union (slavery did not end there until the Thirteenth Amendment was passed in 1865). Blueboar (talk) 15:02, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
No, Maryland abolished slavery during the war. I think Kainaw is trying to dance around his erroneous earlier claim. He wrote: "Once the war was won, the ex-Confederacy still had slavery abolished. Then - after that - slavery was abolished in the rest of the United States." Clearly he seemed to be under the impression that slavery was still legal everywhere outside of the old Confederacy until the 13th amendment. But in fact slavery had been abolished in the north before then, and survived the war only in the border states of Missouri, Kentucky, and Delaware, which by the most expansive definition of the Southern United States, are southern states. If we reject that expansive definition, then Tango's statement that the southern states "were just the last to get rid of slavery" should be modifed with the addition of "except for three border states." This amendment doesn't quite justify Kainaw's response of "That is a common claim that is beat forcefully into the heads of all American children, but it is not remotely true." Every student of the Civil War is taught that Lincoln didn't touch slavery in the border states so as to keep those states in the Union. —Kevin Myers 15:25, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

(super-massive edit conflict back to * here) You'd have to add South Carolina (first to secede, alone if necessary, on 20 December 1860). The six states that met in the Provisional Confederate Congress at Montgomery, Alabama, in February 1861 were S. Carolina (seceded Dec. 1860), Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Florida (all seceded in Jan. 1861), later joined by Texas (1 Feb. 1861). See Confederate States of America#Seceding states for a chronological list. Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina seceded and joined the CSA later that spring; these states are sometimes considered to be the Upper South, but see below. (Shadow governments in Missouri and Kentucky were later admitted, so these states had Congressmen and Senators in both Washington and Richmond.) A musical recitation of the succession of secessionism can be found in the lyrics to The Bonnie Blue Flag (that bears a single star). ¶ However, there are many other ways to slice this up, just considering politics, let alone the underlying geographical, racial and agronomic distinctions of the Cotton South or Black Belt (named as much for its soil as for its inhabitants). For example, Virginia, N. Carolina, Tennessee, Florida and Texas broke ranks to vote for Herbert Hoover (R) against Al Smith (D) in 1928. Those five states plus Arkansas voted for Lyndon Johnson in 1964 while Barry Goldwater (R) took the five other Confederate states (plus Arizona). In 1968, George C. Wallace (Am. Ind.) carried five of the six southern Al Smith states (La, Ark., Miss., Alabama & Ga), but not (ironically) the South Carolina of Strom Thurmond, who by now was leading the defection of Southern segregationist and ex-segregationist Democrats into Goldwater's and Richard Nixon's Republican Party (see Southern Strategy). Twenty years earlier, in 1948, Thurmond had run for President as the States' Rights Democratic (Dixiecrat) candidate, carrying S.C., Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana. Variations on this pattern can be found in the states that supported Adlai Stevenson (D) against Dwight David Eisenhower (R) in 1952 and 1956. —— Shakescene (talk) 06:31, 25 April 2011 (UTC)