" Do you know what makes prisons disappear? Every deep genuine affection. Being friends, being brothers, loving, that is what opens the prison, with supreme power, by some magic force. Without these one stays dead. But whenever affection is revived, there life revives."

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

On Becoming a Prisoner Pen Pal; by D. Kendrick

On Becoming a Prisoner Pen Pal

When I first set out to be a prisoner’s pen pal I was unaware of the connection I would make to myself. From the first letter until now I see a vast difference in the person behind the paper. As I got to know men from different backgrounds, and similar ones, I started to identify with little things they had gone through that were like my own situation. I also started to see myself in a different way.

Many times these men painted themselves as victims and I knew it could not be true that every person in prison was a victim. I did however believe they had all had bad things happen in their lives that lead them to a life where they ended up behind bars. Why had I not ended up there? Bad things happened in my life too. I saw in myself something that these men didn’t have, but for the longest time I could not put my finger on it, so I went on writing.

I slowly started pouring more and more of my soul into each letter, and into each connection I made through this correspondence. As I did, people in my life started to point out I was crazy to put myself so close to “criminals”. But I saw that they were just like me, I just had something different something that they did not have. I started to realize I was not the person to be judging those I did not know enough about. I started, through these men, to let go of the pain of my life and of my past.

I learned that I was not always the final word.
I learned that I could have had a much harder life.
I learned that each scar I have is an extension of a lesson I was destined to learn.
I learned that blood was not always thicker than water – but in the end the liquid didn’t matter.
I learned that it is never smart to chase a rabbit down a rabbit hole.
I realized that I was a woman not many could identify with.
I realized that I was a mother to more than those I birthed.
I realized if the world had just a little more love in it things might actually get better.
I realized I was not the only nut in the Cracker Jack box, but I would not have it any other way.
I started to accept myself for who I am and realize that’s what I have to want to be.
I started to move past the “what if’s” and focus on the “now’s.”

I don’t think any of these lessons in life would have happened, and I would not have realized the thing I had that these men I write, and love, and want to help change their lives, don’t have. I had support, and opportunity to CHANGE my situation. They did not.

Deborah Kendrick/2012
Prisoner Rights Advocate
Anti-Death Penalty Activist

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Monster Lyrics - Wrongful Conviction
 by Joe Simnovec & Paul Paulin

 Stuck here in this place full of steel.
The money didn't get me no deal.
Time, this time the time is for real.
How could this be happening to me.
why? why? why? why me?

I could not do that - no not me.
You got the wrong guy don't you see?
I would not do that - let me be
I told you the truth. Set me free.
no, no, no, no not me.

"You, You were a bad boy
you're gonna do the time"
"you're lawyer wasn't good enough
jail time - a big fine."
"your hairs to long, your clothes are too dirty
if it was up to me
I would give you more then thirty."

"how do you think that WE're gonna live?
We're gonna squeeze your money
your gonna have to give.When you're all dried up we're gonna feel better.
If the systems at fault, you can always send a letter."

Help, I must be in a bad dream
and now, now you can see what I mean.

help, help, hell help me

Time passes so fast, I never felt so low.
Hope I'm gonna last, where did it all go?

I've been in this trap for so long.
How can we let the monster go on?
Don't forget me another day...
In the end we all have to pay.

free, free, free, free me.