Posts Tagged ‘Folsom’

Obama’s Prison Visit

Friday, July 17th, 2015

THERE BUT FOR THE GRACE OF GOD GOES THE PRESIDENT_Where Excuses Go to DieNever mind that President Obama’s prison visit was a public relations handshake event on par with a disaster relief stop by:
I’ll take it. 

The man did, after all, pull off a first-ever presidential prison tour without a GOP push-back accusing him of somehow assisting Mexican druglord ‘El Chapo’ Guzman’s recent escape. With adversaries like Obama’s, it’s a downright miracle he hasn’t been vilified for cozying up to his convict martyr buddies. (more…)

RELEARNING REENTRY ISSUES

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

STAR IN YOUR OWN NETFLIX SERIES_Where Excuses Go to DieLearning prisoner reentry issues means relearning prison.

If we don’t resist the manner in which we’ve been trained to recognize incarceration and the incarcerated, offenders will only continue to be recycled through the system rather than redirected.

Black has always been the New Orange_Where Excuses Go to DieAmericans need to unlearn prison and relearn life behind bars, but not because prison reform is a growing national dialogue: bandwagons produce hot exhaust already. We need to be reeducated because our understanding of the poor coping skills, pressure, and PTSD faced by those emerging from detention has been the stuff of movie jokes for as long as any of us can remember. Mutated by Hollywood and put off by unpleasantness, most Americans can’t get past convict caricatures to see key subtleties that must become part of our awareness. And I do mean ours: taxpayers, you, me, and Law-abiding Larry — not just the social workers we usually leave to resolve issues of recycling vs. redirecting.

Following my own successful parole, I never expected to become a prison commentator or a conveyor belt of questions about confinement, but I can never seem to escape the little strings in life that lead back to my experiences behind bars. Each one returns me to lessons learned “inside” that now take civilian form on a daily basis. In fact, those lessons accompany me so doggedly, I’m constantly comparing in-custody versions to civilian values and principles. Witnessing inmates upholding the same rules they utterly failed to live by “outside” was and remains fascinating. At the same time, it makes sense that a closed culture like the one behind bars would enforce a rapid and uncompromising assimilation process. (more…)

The Curious Morass of Stephen Glass

Thursday, January 30th, 2014

NO DO-OVERS FOR STEPHEN GLASS_Where Excuses Go to DieShamed ex-journalist is definition of Get Character or Become One.

Here’s the background in a nutshell: They made a movie about how full of crap this guy is, and in recently denying his bid to become a lawyer, the California Supreme Court agreed that Stephen Glass is an unreformed, serial liar (and a bigot).

The court’s decision is the document your mother warned you about. The first few sentences alone hooked me, and as I continued reading I couldn’t help but pause to appreciate how good I have it.

I may be a convicted armed robber who the state of California once sent to Folsom prison, yet to the best of my knowledge and documentation retrieval efforts no court decision or official determination of me is anywhere near as condemning as this decision on Glass. Blame it on Hayden Christensen’s wooden acting if you must, but not even Hollywood’s version more indelibly reinforces the expression that cheaters never prosper.  (Yeah yeah, they often do, but  journalistic fraud circa 1998 doesn’t quite reach the heights of today’s macroeconomic mega-scams or the cheating wars teachers and Chinese-trained GPA hackers are now waging.)

America is a nation of second chances, yet the court’s decision essentially stamped “NO DO-OVERS” across Stephen Glass’s doughy face. How harsh is that!?

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