Every prisoner is unique in his own way. I cannot honestly say that the emotions i experience are the same emotions every prisoner feels. In fact, I can say without a doubt many prisoners lack the education to even process the ramifications of society’s misconceptions about them. A biased belief towards another group based on profiling, is the very essence of dehumanization, and ultimately oppression. It diminishes the value of another’s existance soley because of conflicting views.
Perhaps it’s because I’m a writer that i tend to dwell on how I’m perceived by much of society. I’ve read the tragic misconceptions, and heard the hatred of those on television as they angrily cast judgment upon prisoners as a whole. The sad truth is that the majority of those who have preconceived beliefs about us would probably befriend us if they gave us a chance. Thankfully we are not alone in our efforts to be given another chance. There are honest and good men isolated behind these walls striving to prove to themselves and the world that they are not monsters, they’re just people who made mistakes, and terrible choices in order to solve thier problems. Some were addicted to drugs, others were kids misled by troubled peers, most of these men grew up in poverty, with very little education and survived neighborhoods that taught them to be the way they had to be in order to survive. Neighborhoods where death and violence was the best solution to any conflict. For me those days are over. Education has shown me the most powerful weapon is knowledge and the best ammunition is words. And so, I study, and I write.

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