Tag Archives: Imprisonment

2CU: Stick / Sleep and Escape

Freedom can never be taken
Freedom never can be taken

For convicts doing time, sleep and escape may be the only way to retain sanity. Stick drives this concept home for those who have never experienced incarceration.

2nd Chance University partners with organizations/institutions dedicated to those who have stumbled. Our material and empowering workshops are about real people, real life, and real issues.

Take note of what Stick has to say and respond to the insight questions honestly.

Stick

Edgar Allan Poe referred to sleep as small slices of death. Truth is, sleep is the only escape from these walls many of us will ever obtain. Sadly, the meager reprieve of sleep fades into the sickening awareness of where we are.

Insight

Other than their physical bodies being held in prison, where do you think an inmates mind is at and why?

The gray morning rises with icicles hanging from the bars of the penitentiary. Frigid cement floors bite our bare feet as we make our bunk and wash our face for another day. The harsh grating sounds of the steel doors sliding open signal most of us that it’s time for work.

We step out from what we call our house, but most people would call a cell, into a condemned miniature population. Some of us are inmates, some of us are convicts, but everyone here wears white as well as time.

Insight

As Stick mentions, everyone wears white as well as time, but some are inmates and some are convicts. If you were to go prison, do you picture yourself as an inmate or as a convict (why one and not the other)? 

I believe in hope, I believe in people, and I believe in second chances.

I welcome your stories to be added into our series. If you chose to share or support, email me directly. For those wishing to introduce 2CU and our programs into an organization, institution, or facility, please step forward; together we can make a difference.

Danny Huffman
407-878-0474
2nd Chance University
http://www.2ndChanceUniversity.org
dhuffman@2ndChanceUniversity.org

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1 + 1 equals… well, that depends

Statistics and numbers have their uses, mostly depending upon the agenda spinners manipulating them. While numbers reveal much about a particular situation, the fact remains, they can also obscure things, creating more of a head-scratching event than a cerebral epitome.

Question, if numbers are black and white, how can they also turn into grey on a subjective whim? To illustrate, let’s concentrate on what we know best… the criminal element, namely recidivism.

It’s easy to get caught up in discussing recidivism rates, budget allotments, and what really works as the amount of money involved is racking up beyond infinity. Given the nature of subjective realism, debating crime stats, studying methodologies, and examining sample sizes is akin to trying to close a cracked Pandora Box.

Unfortunately, without context and content, numbers on a spreadsheet are simply just that: numbers on a spreadsheet.

To be real, numbers mean nothing, what matters is living a good life, where fear no longer exists and where dreams can (and do) become reality through hard work, commitment, hope, and empowerment.

Truth is, 2CU is not here to crunch numbers (though we have a few to crunch), we’re here to change lives and bring light to an otherwise darkened world. Offering hope, especially for the justice-involved, and raising the torch for all to follow.

For a moment, let’s look beyond retention rates and placement numbers and uncover the human element so many simply don’t understand or chose not to see. Let’s look through the eyes of Steven, a graduate of our program and one who happens to wear a number on his back.

Steven was reared to see the world where struggle was a way of life and giving up on the system (and self) was just the way it was. He saw a dark, dangerous place with no security, no safety net, no support, and definitely no future. Lacking a father figure at home, he sought acceptance and guidance in the street.

Didn’t take long for a gang to offer Steven what he felt was lacking. A series of arrests would give him a record and a narrower path to follow for the remainder of his years.

After release, Steven resisted change, claiming there was no way anyone would give him a chance. His stint in prison left a heavy mark on him. Holding a CHE Quotient of less than 1.5, his main obstacle was himself and the barriers HE created for himself.

Two months after release and slipping back into his old routine, he came to realize (due another near-by) destiny would be behind bars. He got picked up but was gifted a second chance.

Avoiding a return to prison depended upon his finding himself and gainful employment, but the difficulty he faced in finding work with his past was daunting. Steven was despondent, feeling that the stigma of his past would never go away.

Looking at the numbers, he had no chance… but you can’t always bet on the numbers

(Going to slow this down for now, will conclude tomorrow when we will uncover Steven’s CHE Quotient after the program and what path he is venturing)

Richard Milaschewski,
2ndChanceUniversity.org