Saturday, November 19, 2011

Big Ben Logic

My friend Big Ben makes so much sense so much of the time.

He was talking with Michigan legislators about the state's abominable prison situation. And he was talking about his particular situation. He's among about 40 lifers in the system who didn't get covered by new legislation, and therefore cannot become eligible for parole.

I was convicted at 22. I am now 64, diabetic, hypertensive, and afflicted with a number of other ailments for which I take 8 different kinds of prescription medications.

On average it costs the state $33,000 to incarcerate one healthy individual for one year in the D.O.C.

I, on the other hand, cost the Michigan tax payer somewhere in the neighborhood of $45-50,000 a year in incarceration costs. If you multiply that by the remaining 40 or more Aaron Lifers in the prison system, you begin to understand how this affects the state's efforts to contain its deficits.

Regardless of whether these words come from behind or in front of prison bars, they make sense and should be considered by our elected officials.

Big Ben is a considerate, highly intelligent inmate who should someday be elected to represent others in public office.

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