It’s 5:29 a.m. and I’ve been up all night. Josh is sleeping in the other room, bathed in the (deliciously) cold air. We’re now the semi-proud owners of three air conditioners! That’s reason to celebrate around here; things have been so rough lately. Apart from general hassles and stressors in life, the extreme heat was making us all a little bit crazy. It quite literally felt as if our brains were simmering in our own stupid juices.
I can actually think now and focus on my schoolwork again (which is drastically overdue). My teachers gave me an extension; I really don’t like to do that, but in this case, it couldn’t be helped. I’ve decided that I’ll be more than likely working on my B.A. in Criminal Justice after I graduate, minoring in Psychology. I’m interested in working in the areas of probation, parole, and rehabilitation. Here’s my theory:
There are two major gaps in our penal system. The first gap is within the age ranges of 17-24. Many of these candidates are still juveniles/young adults and have never been incarcerated for an extended length of time. They’re petty offenders and are still in a somewhat malleable state: they can still be reached and easily molded for correction and productivity. Some of these people will fall through the gap however, ending up in prison after several bouts with crime. This is the first gap and should be considered to be at one end of “prevention”. This is also the area that falls into probation rather than parole.
The second gap deals with people who are between the ages of 40-55 (give or take a few years). These are the ones who have fallen through the first gap and have been through the many revolving doors of the penal system, having never been rehabilitated. These are much harder cases because they have spent years in prison already, and when they are released, they hardly stand a chance at successfully rebuilding their lives due to the fact that the majority of our U.S. prisons aren’t implementing applicable programs that will help to restructure their lives. This is the second gap, and should be considered to be at the other end of the line, which is “cure”.
The two gaps are crucial points for either category, because they are both PRIME TIMES for a juvenile delinquent (or former inmate) to utilize ready programs that will help him or her change their lives for the better.
My main area of interest will be in working in one of these areas: prevention/probation or cure/parole. And I don’t want to go and punch a time card, “do my job”, and go home. I don’t want that to be my life. I want to put every bit of what I have within me into my job, wherever it will be, and combine my personal and empirical experience in life with my academic education so that I can “actually make a difference” in the lives of others.
We’re heading out of here at 10:00 a.m.
We’re going to Tennessee to pick up Brianna from her friend’s house; it’s a beautiful stretch of country.
Time to see the sandman…