25 Redemption through education
I admit my mistakes more
easily when other people are helping me to improve. My
admission is an agreement with others to make progress, and the
very best kind is admission to myself
that I can do
restorative justice for improving conditions by replacing bad
with good behavior. The program reduces the hurt to the
perpetrator and to the victim. Redirecting lives requires
effort on both sides.
The prison Shakespeare
project is one example of changing lives. Teachers report
that inmates understand
the misdeeds in the stories.
They identify with the hurt and the needs. Performing the
plays is a process of redemption through education. Thought
and awareness change people from within.
I have seen a picture of
a Norwegian prison cell that was almost as large and as nice as
my dormitory room in a prestigious university. Citizens
there have intentionally provided for education in prison knowing
that is less expensive and more effective than repairing damage
caused by crime. Retribution and punishment are not
ingredients of rehabilitation because they perpetuate the hurt
without reconstruction. In contrast, education is positive
replacement of behavior.
We who are not in prison
are exercising our own education when we impart it to those who
are in prison. If we have no strength to educate those who
have offended, we ourselves are uneducated.
The next post examines
how and to whom this applies.
kyryll ushakov on Unsplash
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