Well it’s been over a year since anything has been written on our humble micro blog. Some things have changed and others have not. Profound thought: if nothing changes, nothing changes.
Personal update: Patty and I both continue to work hard in our respective careers, our passion for helping those with family incarcerated remains alive and strong. I have aged another year, a gall bladder is missing, yet I have lost no weight. The old Prius still runs; I enjoy fishing and Patty stays fit, intellectually and spiritually.
Sadly, I am not optimistic that those behind the wire will experience improved treatment in the near future. As an example, the Duluth Minnesota BOP Federal Camp no longer allows unescorted volunteers on their premises, goodbye to the volunteer pastors, AA and others who provide a ray of hope in dark places; no escort, no volunteer. What or who is behind that decision? Do they have family doing time? Were volunteers bringing in contraband? BOP short staffed?
Private prisons and detention centers are no longer deemed toxic due to their history of violence and being understaffed. Their census should increase with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) doing such a good job. ICE even has their own airline, Ice Air. You can’t make this stuff up. So how are things in detention facilities these days? Anybody even care? Shattered dreams, rampant fear in the immigrant community plus an Attorney General from Alabama leading the Department of Justice, what could possibly go wrong?
Now more than ever, those who have family incarcerated must stay resilient and maintain hope, strength and faith. Talk is cheap, so what have Patty and I done? Fair question. We started a support group based in our church called Safe Harbor. It is for people who are or were in my shoes when Patty was doing Federal time. We hope our small group makes a difference. As I see it, inmate conditions in America’s prisons are a low priority and progress is at risk. We are facing a climate change politically regarding justice and prisons in our country. This is not fake news or an alternate fact, this is just bad news. Stay strong.