Section: Reconciliation

December 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

A section where victims could have a voice was always part of the vision.  This section will be call Reconciliation and it will feature letters, poems, essay and other writings from victims.

The opportunity to name the offender will be explored.  I’m sure there are legalities.  Maybe equally as important is that offenders HEAR stories from victims.   Accountability is a great soil for responsibility and change to grow in.

Shall the section have a static byline or a changing one?  Both?  One can be ever present, always explaining the value of the reconciliation section and another can be featured and changed per issue to be pondered and applied by readers.  I like the latter. You?

When reading over the information on VORP (Victim Offender Reconciliation Program), my main thoughts surround how these ideas can be converted into print and maybe even better served in some ways.  BTW, save the religious aspect, this program is a phenomenal idea.

Topic for another post:  the rampant presence of religious assistance in the penal system – narcissistic or beneficial.

The RECONCILIATION Section – Some Brainstorming

RECONCILIATION  in print form provides the opportunity to:

  • The participatory acts of reading and writing are completely consensual and voluntary expressions that can be revisited and completed in whatever time necessary.
  • Ask questions which may have arisen out of the offense AND receive a response from a wide variety of offenders involved in the same or similar activity.
  • Express feelings and opinions about the offense directly to the offender AND many other offenders – providing them with constructive, restorative information.
  • Take responsibility for actions and involvement in the offense AND express sentiments that were not fully disclosed during judicial process or that have come about during incarceration.
  • Move on to a better emotional state after the offense by restoring both victim and offender dignity.

THANK YOU – insidetime newspaper!

December 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

I have been lax in thanking Mr. John Roberts – Operations Director at InsideTime the National Newspaper for Prisoners in the United Kingdom.

The existence of InsideTime made me believe that this project could really happen and Mr. Roberts has been a great support.  Honestly, I was surprised when he answered that first email to him – it was so long and disjointed.  Excitement can do that to a message.  But…he listened and pledged his support with guidance and information. I cannot ask for anything more!

They recently celebrated their 20th anniversary of providing invaluable information to the prison community and to others.  I can’t wait for NPJP to be in the same position.

A foreshadow of what’s to come….

InsideTime November 2010

Education and Correctional Populations

December 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

This report is disturbing.  It’s contents and the information is the latest, dated 2003.  Another example of how invisible the prison population is.  I will discuss  this invisibility shortly.

Click to access education_prisons.pdf

Summary:

About 41% of inmates in the Nation’s State and Federal prisons and local jails in 1997 and 31% of probationers had not completed high school or its equivalent. In comparison, 18% of the general population age 18 or older had not finished the 12th grade.  Between 1991 and 1997, the percent of inmates in State prison without a high school diploma or GED remained the same — 40% in 1997 and 41% in 1991. Of inmates in State prisons, 293,000 in 1991 and 420,600 in 1997 had entered prison without a high school diploma, a 44% increase.

Over 9 in 10 State prisons provided educational programs for their inmates. Half of State prison inmates reported they had participated in an educational program since their most recent admission to prison. About a quarter of State inmates had taken basic education or high school level courses, and almost a third, vocational training.

The Value of a Print Publication

December 6, 2010 § Leave a comment

Much of this article, save the emphasis on Ayn Rand’s Objectivism, explains very plainly, the value of achieving the goal of a National Prison Journal in the written form.  There is still value in the old school print form.  The Undercurrent is laid out simply on newsprint and is how I envision the National Prison Journal to be.

The Value of a Print Publication

As a print publication, The Undercurrent can play a unique role in the spread of Objectivism. A small amount of effort on the part of distributors creates a huge impact on the campus environment. The paper injects the name ‘Ayn Rand’ and Objectivist viewpoints into the physical spaces that students frequent, giving Objectivism the familiarity that comes from persistent presence. The paper makes the Objectivist voice a part of the intellectual debate on campus. Further, as a national effort, the project has the potential to outlast individual campus clubs and pool the best talent from schools across the country.

Attracting New Objectivists
The Undercurrent, as a newsletter, is a great medium to expose sympathetic students to the philosophy. Unlike a website, a print publication makes it easy for any student to pick up an issue at the library, a coffee shop, or his dorm lounge, and begin an interest in Objectivism that he otherwise would not have developed. The comprehensive list of club and community events on our last page indicates to the neophyte the scope and progress of the Objectivist movement in America. Students who already have some knowledge of Objectivism are encouraged to learn more.

Ministering to the Needs of Campus Clubs
A multi-campus paper, as the calling card of a broader movement, aids campus clubs in their efforts to promote Objectivism. By distributing The Undercurrent, even the smallest clubs can make a big splash, attracting new members, promoting events, and forging a connection to the larger Objectivist student movement. Besides benefiting from the calendar of campus club events (which includes meetings) printed on our last page, club leaders can stamp their clubs’ contact information on each paper, or enclose a flyer for meetings and events in each copy.

Advancing the Careers of Committed New Intellectuals
Finally, The Undercurrent is hugely beneficial to its staff and writers, the young Objectivist intellectuals who will go on to carry the Objectivist banner into a variety of fields, both academic and professional. It develops and fine-tunes their understanding of Objectivism by involving them in an extensive, self-directed writing and editing process. Although geographically distant, the staff and writers are able to work closely with each other in an inspired joint venture to change the values of the culture.

Brainstorming on Magazine/Newspaper Categories

December 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

I envision the journal a magazine layout more than a newspaper.  Of course, the final layout will be determined by what will be easiest to get into all jails, prison, half-way houses and detention centers.  Staples may be a problem as screws in cassettes are a problem.  So, whichever option come close to fully clearing the hurdle will be the one we go with.

This list is what I’ve thought of to date.  In this section of the NPJP blog I will also break out and brainstorm each proposed section.  It’s all part of the journey!

  • Health
  • Nature
  • Want to Hear From You
  • Speak Your Mind
  • Research Corner
  • Questions (Inside & Out)
  • Letters
  • Politics
  • Self Awareness
  • Business
  • Re-entry
  • Jokes, Riddles, Cartoons, Contests, Recipes, Paper Crafts
  • Art
  • History
  • Literature
  • English Language
  • Foreign Language
  • Math
  • Sociology
  • Psychology
  • Philosophy
  • Cultural Studies
  • Media
  • Ethics
  • Advertisements
  • Subscriptions
  • Grammar/Vocabulary
  • Writing
  • Reality Check
  • …more

Now, looking at the list in writing, many of these areas may be combined or topics regularly covered.

I think the point that is made clearly is that the journal will be varied and stimulating.

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