Watching Our Justice System - Awesome
When they first sit down together they look uncomfortable. No one knows each other and it could be a group of people who have gathered for a mandatory driver’s ed class or in response to some training ad about how to get a better job. They sit stiffly with their eyes straight ahead, afraid to look at the person sitting shoulder-to-shoulder next to them.
But after a day or so they invariably come together as a cohesive group. When they file in the room and the person in charge says, “Good Morning” they begin to respond more robustly, sometimes even boisterously as the days progress – like smiling kids singing a strung out version of “Gooood Morrrrn-ing!” They have gelled.
They have become a jury that will decide the fate of a fellow citizen. [click to continue…]
But Not For All Mothers
Happy Mother’s Day to all the other Moms out there! Your children have likely bought you a nice card and a gift, maybe some flowers or perhaps they plan to take you out for a fancy meal to show you how much they love you. Sweet. And just the way it should be.
My mom is no longer here and this holiday is one that makes me sentimental and nostalgic.
But for tens of thousands of American mothers it is just another day behind bars. There are no flower or PajamaGram deliveries allowed in prison to mark this day.
It is hard to find current and trustworthy statistics about exactly how many women are incarcerated in the United States or how many of them are mothers. One of the causalities of our lousy economy is up-to-date research on such things, but I think it’s safe to say the number of female prisoners lies somewhere between Amnesty International’s figure of 148,000 and the American Civil Liberties Union’s tally which put the number of American women and girls in lockup at 200,000. A documentary released last year by the University of Pennsylvania put the number of incarcerated mothers in 2007 at 65,600. [click to continue…]
~ We can all start taking small steps that lead to enacting real change in society and government.
Sometimes a Writer Hits a Nerve
Sometimes a columnist writes something that grabs people by the throat. I guess I accomplished that last week when I wrote about a recent article I had read called, “In Nothing We Trust.”
It hit me smack between the eyes that I don’t have much faith in any of our public institutions anymore. Don’t trust Congress. Don’t trust that government agencies are really looking out for me. Don’t trust that banking or investment institutions care about my needs. Don’t trust that public schools or organized religions operate with the common good in mind. Don’t trust that the court system or the police always operate with true justice as the goal. These, of course, are the pillars that hold up society as we know it. Apparently many of you agree with me. [click to continue…]