Samuel Adams, American statesman, one of our founding fathers, once said:
"It does not take a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brush-fires of freedom in the minds of men."
A very nice person who likes what I write recently suggested that I write an op-ed for one of the major newspapers. I sincerely appreciated the compliment and the suggestion, but I opted not to pursue that challenge for two reasons. One, I’m not all that enamored by my own writing; and two, I’m not all that convinced that my ranting and raving makes any difference.
BUT, having said that, on this Fourth of July weekend, I’m grateful for the freedom to write. I am proud to claim membership in Samuel Adams’ “irate, tireless minority,” and for that reason, I’ll keep right on setting brush-fires.
You’ve heard it in the past, and I guaran-dam-tee-it you’ll hear it in the future.
-I’m going to keep on bitterly complaining about the inhumane and widespread use of solitary confinement.
-I’ll never let up on the shameless way we feed Michigan prisoners, on two-dollars a day.
-I’ve been griping forever about the terrible medical care that our inmates receive, and that will never change until there is improvement.
-Mental illness is a problem that won’t go away, and we cannot keep ignoring it.
-Defendants, especially those who are indigent and/or of color, continue to be over-charged and over-sentenced in our system of injustice.
-Until we deal with mandatory minimums our prison population will remain inflated.
-Until that day our governor grasps the importance of clemency, and her power to use it, our cells will be occupied by many who deserve freedom.
-Ignoring the ailing and the elderly is not only inhumane, it is immoral.
-It never ceases to amaze me how politicians of both parties ignore the plight of the incarcerated. Our of sight, out of mind.
The list of prisoner "brush-fires" is endless, limitless.
And we’re not talking about numbers or statistics, here. We’ll talking about moms and dads, aunts and uncles, sisters and brothers.
So, on Independence Day, 2020, this old man continues to warn that things ain’t gonna just get better on their own. It’s up to all of us.
…whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.