Friday, April 10, 2009

Changing the systems

I found today's topics to be great ones as usual, but at least today I have time to write about them. The first one is about justice in the prison system. A couple of excerpts I found particularly good:

"What significance did 20 years have? From my perspective, we need to reevaluate this misguided concept of justice that only recognizes time. Ours is a society that strives toward enlightenment, yet we incarcerate more people per capita than any other nation."

"I propose that we stop relying upon the turning of calendar pages to measure justice. A far more effective corrections system would measure justice by the efforts an offender makes to reconcile with society. Such a system would require a fundamental reform."

"Warehousing humanity doesn’t reduce crime. Education reduces crime."

And here's a video by Tony, a homeless veteran who describes why he panhandles and how he makes ends meet:

Tony from invisible people on Vimeo.

Thankfully, I can be proud of my Representative, John Hall, who yesterday got President Obama to approve the veterans programs he's been supporting since coming to Congress. Read more about it here.

This doesn't mean we should continue to ignore the people on the streets (as we're all guilty of doing more often than not, I'm sure), but it least the video of Tony gives us some insight into their lives so we can understand where they're coming from. Let's help prevent this from happening by improving the education system and the prison system, and help get these guys off the streets and into jobs, such as these green-collar jobs discussed by Van Jones.

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