Giving Felons Hope: New Site to Help Those Recently Released From Prison

November 3rd, 2008 | By

Most of us know someone that has been locked up. I’ll even share a memory with you from my youth. One of my friends, at the time, was being released from a 2 year bid. The boys got him a limo, complete with strippers. They even bought him a new mink coat. They rolled up to the Jail in the limo and picked him up. That night, he went back out on the street.

Before he did though, we all went out to eat. I pulled him to the side and asked when would he be going back. He told me, “probably the next time so one test me”. There is nothing you can say to someone with that mind set. It was really the beginning of my dissent from my group. I loved these guys. They had my back and I sat and watched as they ruined their lives.

My heart is a little lighter today. A new site was launched, The site combines businesses and organizations that help with assimilating the once incarcerated back into the community. It’s a wonderful start. Please check out the site and let those around you know to support it.

With that being said, there is also more you can do. You can do what I was a afraid to do in my youth. Tell the people you love that are doing things you know will get them in trouble to stop. I know it’s not easy and I know most won’t listen but at least try.

I didn’t want to be the person that stopped what they assumed was progress. They had pockets full of money and that was success to them. How could I stand up and say any thing different? Easy. I could have told the truth. If you are already a felon, why would you carry a gun. And the answer would come, “to many people want what I have, I need a gun.”

I wasn’t strong enough then to continue the debate, but I am now. They only want what you got because you flaunt it. You ride around in your big car, while the ghetto is hurting. Yes, they are going to look for the people with money that won’t call the police after being robbed. And you put yourself into that category when you have that easy money.

If you want to be the King Pen, don’t complain when you get all the comes with that. The crucial moment will come when we demand more.

I never thought I would reference this movie because when I went to see it in the movie theatre I was so disappointed. It was movie about skating, what the fuck. Anyways, in ATL, the uncle is a prime example. The older brother was trying to convince the younger brother not to sell drugs. The uncle thought it would be O.K. to have a little extra money in the house.

Which would you be? Would you fight with your brother to keep him from going to Jail or ending up shot? Or would you allow him to walk that path you know will end in incarceration or a tombstone? We are waiting for someone to solve our problems when we have the ability to take little steps to move us forward.

The site above is great, but if no one goes for the assistance, who will it help. Convince your friends and family or just the neighborhood boy on the street that people are there willing to help. Convince your friends and family that opening businesses will help the situation because you can hire these people and give them a second chance. Convince yourself that you have a role to play in helping these people before they are caught up. Because once they are felons, they can’t vote to help their communities.

If we start, we can get others to follow. But we have to start. We have to be strong enough to critcize and point in right direction. Let me warn you, you will catch flack. I’m sure I’ll get the messages after writing this that tell me I hate my race.

I want to stop young black men from dying or going to jail. How can I hate my race? The people who encourage you to continue on the same path, knowing exactly where it leads, really don’t give a damn about you. At that’s the truth.

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