Imagine for a moment that you are incarcerated. You do not know when you will be released, for you must gain release from a parole board. You’ve been incarcerated for not 10, not 20, but 29 years. You’ve see this parole board a half dozen times now.
Think for a moment what the world was like 29 years ago. Now imagine how much the world has changed since then, and what the world would be like to you today after this amount of time.
Finally, imagine what it would be like for that parole board to finally say, “We are granting you parole.” This is what happened this week to one of my good friends. And, this is what it’s like to be incarcerated in Ohio.
In Ohio there’s a dual mandate to rehabilitate in addition to punish. Sometimes the rehabilitative mandate is a success. This is the case with Chris.
The criminal justice system works, but oftentimes the rehabilitative mandate is lost amongst voices for punishment. The end result is 29 years before recognition of rehabilitative change. If there is an argument for reform, it is here in this example.
Good luck Chris, and I hope to see you again someday as a free man, too. Don’t stop pursuing your dreams, because for us dreams are sometimes all that we have.
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