Discussion: The Radical Power of a Prison Pen Pal

Discussion for article #231123

Sort of been there, sort of done that. I’ve worked many a halfway house convict that are nearing the end of incarceration, male and female. There is a constant in that they all have in inner anger and live in denial to degrees. It takes much to gain confidence on both sides and even then there is a holding back. Lies become reality and you either accept that or you never get beyond the first few stages.

The system is stacked against criminals and the time that they are required to stay absolutely mistake free is a test most can’t pass. It is practically designed to induce failure and repeat offenses. I couldn’t and don’t live by those rules and luckily don’t have to.

A pen pal is a time passer which is a requirement during incarceration, upon release, most start to fade back towards what got them arrested in the first place. That is my experience.

I’ve written people in prison for over 35 years. In my opinion, the guys have always given back a thousand fold. I’ve been hustled a couple of times, and some correspondence has been difficult (one man of Georgia’s death row was too disturbed for me to help much). I’ve written one man in Florida since 1998, and I consider us family.