Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Tuesday's at home.

Monday night I ended up eating something my body didn't agree with, so I spent the evening folded in half with weird ghost-cramps and nausea. I ended up getting very little sleep, so I slept in on Tuesday and took the day off of work.

I spent the day yesterday sleeping, mostly. I got up in the later afternoon, took a shower and had something to eat. I then watched 13th on Netflix, which amongst a complex list of issues, was about the prison industrial complex, and the direct policies enacted in America to feed and sustain that system.

I haven't lived my life entirely ignorant of the prison industrial complex, but I didn't realize to what degree the political/corporate interests were all so directly linked. Nor did I realize the complexities of oppressing folks openly through shady language use and back-room deals.

I don't know that writing to Michael has changed the way I see prisons, but the reading I've done, and the information I'm trying to take in has changed the way I see people who are incarcerated.

I highly recommend seeing the doc, it explains everything so clearly. There are a lot of things I didn't really know about - as a Canadian. Things like mandatory minimums, or that prisoners lose the right to vote. In Canada, prisoners can vote. I don't know about mandatory minimums here, but I'm looking into it. The documentary also had startling statistics about the amount of people who do not face trial, but simply plead guilty in order to "cop a deal."

I know our systems are very different, but our cultures are linked nonetheless.

Some of the stories shared in 13th really shocked me. I have trouble understanding the logic, and enforcement of laws that put someone in jail for 20-30 years on a drug charge.

I have trouble understanding the ways in which prisons are expected to "rehabilitate" people. How are these dehumanizing systems to benefit anyone?

How likely is prison reform?

What I'm reading:

Why Scandinavian Prisons Are Superior

The Norwegian prison where inmates are treated like people

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