Thursday, November 17, 2016

Post-election nausea? Not in prison!

It may surprise you to know that some prisoners aren’t really all that anxious about the state of national affairs. 

The appointment of a white supremacist to a key position in the White House may seem like a national disaster to you.  But frankly, David is more concerned about his bowel movements.  He’s a paraplegic, and the only way he can go is with the assistance of personal medical care…something he doesn’t always get in the prison hospital.  Then he has accidents.

A national election that is decided by the Electoral College, rather than a popular vote, may be spoiling your appetite these days, but Cary has spent more than $100,000 on attorneys to prove his innocence, and all he has to show for it is receipts.  They didn’t give him what he paid for.  No more money.  No freedom.

Words of hatred and bigotry not only dominate our TV shows, but are even showing up in our social and religious circles.  But I must tell you that all of this disgusting behavior is not what’s on Nathan’s mind.  He has been diagnosed with cancer, he’s in the Michigan prison system and gets no indication at all that doctors plan to do anything about it.

As a spouse and a parent, you may find shameful talk and descriptions of women by public officials to be totally unacceptable.  But Cindy, who was an award-winning professional before she was arrested for killing her habitually abusive husband as he tried to kill her, couldn’t care less.  She has already served 12 years of a life sentence for what an aggressive Prosecutor called First Degree Murder.  Says Cindy:  “The judicial system that I believed to be fair and just has betrayed me.”  She questions whether she’ll ever be free again.

The fact that a national candidate who advocated for free college education lost the race for the Presidency may bother you, but it’s of no concern to Tony.  He just appeared before a member of the Michigan Parole Board, hoping to get a positive review…and when he shared with her his dream that, if released, he wanted to go to college…she laughed at him!

I’m not saying we shouldn’t be concerned about the topsy-turvy national picture right now.  There’d be something wrong with us if we weren’t.  But it’s important to keep things in balance.  The world is different in prison, and our issues aren’t necessarily theirs.  One prisoner wrote:  Being in prison is worse than death.  At least when you’re dead the pain stops.  The life you once knew is no more.  You can see it, but you can no longer interact with it.  You’re trapped in a monotonous limbo watching time march on for your loved ones.  But for you, it does not.

These are the people with whom Matt and I are holding hands on a daily basis, following strict orders from Jesus to just show a little compassion and kindness.  Their problems, perhaps small by comparison to some in our minds, are huge to them.

In all of the controversy of the moment, please do not forget us or them.

More than ever before, HFP and our prisoners need you:  your prayers and your support.

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