Saturday, January 3, 2009
Great Program Threatened by Ugly Reality
Q13 did a strong piece on the Post-prison Education Program, one of my favorite organizations, run by the fiery Ari Kohn. One day, this mild-mannered man is going to explode, and I along with him. Ari received the Change Agent of the Year Award at the 2008 Real Change annual breakfast. One of the reasons I admire prisoners advocates so much is that they almost never win, but the whole time, their faces are pressed up against the glass. As bottom-up perspectives on America go, theirs is a breathtaking view.
State Senator Adam Kline, who appears in this news story speaking in favor of Ari's program, is the exceptional legislator who understands that policies which constantly grind the poor into the dust often produce blow-back and are not in society's best interest. But most lawmakers are cowards, driven by fear and responsive to their fearful, ill-informed, constituencies, and as any amateur psychologist knows, fear is the root of hate. That's politics in America: ugly as a monkfish and twice as dumb.