01 Dec
Educate instead of incarcerate. This is my issue, my cause, my new focus for development. God has continued to have me take part in experiences and conversations that let me know more about my purpose in urban planning.
Frequently I become ill at the thought of incarceration. I began to understand the complexity of prison after reading both of Asha Bandele’s book’s regarding the details of falling in love with a man in prison (really good read for males and females). I have had family members in prison and have written letters to a few friends that were locked up but it wasn’t until recently that I have fully grasped the impact of incarceration and what it means to my future. To my sisters future. To my nieces future. To EVERYONE’S future.
I have worked with children for years now. As challenging as they can be, I have always been able to see the beauty in their struggles, creativity, excitement, and passion about things that probably mean nothing to me (but grow to mean something because I will take on any cause that matters to them). I fear that in the near future we will be a society almost void of black and brown men and all of their beauty.
I want to begin to fight for them, prisoners, on the policy end while also taking it to the streets. I know there is not just one way to win this battle, but that the tactics must take place simultaneously. Our youth are imprisoned before they can comprehend. Their parents un-educated to the point that they cannot help them understand consequences, choices, and alternatives; neither are they in circles that promote these abilities. Our youth are given trumped-up charges so that no matter how much they try to plea down, they still receive a felony. These felonies lead to loss privileges. Loss experiences. Loss ties.

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3 responses to “LOSS…..Incarceration

  1. Jeff Baker

    January 8, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Once again you hit the nail on the head, so I won’t be long winded. Felonies make us prisoners for life, & the saddest part is that the overwhelming bulk of these felony charges are for NON-violent offenses, offenses that caused no one direct harm. Unemployable, underemployed, labled, ineligable for school grants, and in many states unable to vote is what the felony tag leaves you with, yet we expect felons to leave prison and find a way to nevercome back ?? The dirty little secret is, the system is set up to INSURE that they come back,or die,or kill !! So, Ashley, it is your DUTY, as an individual blessed with the gift of comprehension and undersanding,to change the structure that has helped to condemn our communities !! ( sorry to lay it on you this early in the morning) It is up to YOU to save the world, one city at a time, starting with Chicago !! (That’s my motto, feel free to use it) Much Love, Jeff Baker TheCFABC

    • Ashley S.C. Walls

      January 9, 2012 at 4:16 pm

      I am taking on the responsibility Jeff, as our you! I am not sure exactly what will help uproot the systems that have led to the incarceration factory, but I am committed to engaging in dialogue and solutions that will help eradicate unlawful imprisonment and unfair sentencing.


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