File Under: Papyrus Collective Group
BY MICHAEL FLINNER
While no single arc covers all of human complexity, not much can be said for living an implacably-hostile existence beyond myriad walls and fences at San Quentin State Prison --- a sentence of death to be carried out by lethal injection might be a wee-bit on the complex side, but it is "my" tug-of-war with morality, one replete with shame and regret the enormity of which, no "just" society could ever ignore.
An ardent Jew of 51 whose broad commitment to both family and tradition remain in tact, I'm plagued with a nagging select few questions:
1.) In a society where mass-incarceration functions as a part of a social control system, one might ask, "What is justice if it isn't the act of making something great come from something altogether terrible?"
2.) How might a broken man like myself find the self-discipline to achieve some meaningful semblance of idealogical, politically-systemic, and palatable reform capable of dispelling the various myths that prisoners are without redeeming value?
Just days prior to my father's untimely passing, he whispered to me, "a man can preach a better sermon with his life than with his lips". There was a moment of profound lucidity wherein thereafter, I realized that absolutely nothing stood between my misfortune and whatever good intentions still loitered from within.
Internalizing the concept of "repay[ing]" my debt to society through restitution, rehabilitation, and punishment for my alleged transgressions came by and through understanding that the word "penitentiary" simply put, meant a place to learn penitence. With that, I dropped an ambitious idea upon a local senator's desk, the result of which gave birth to www.inmateorgans.org --- an inducement-free living inmate organ donor initiative, currently dubbed, "The Ultimate Restitution".
While death will always be the incomparable great bipartisan, but for the bravery and human dignity of those who inspire us, the pursuit of national legislation which replaces destruction with life, would be a mere figment of anyone's imagination.
If a once shameless and beyond contemptible man like myself can put something of this magnitude into working order, certain others in lesser shoes might discover their very own humble solution which promotes general public welfare.
Michael Flinner is a Southern California former general contractor, ex-wiseguy (JDL), accomplished author, and unwed legislative advocate for inducement-free living inmate organ donation whose interests include art, literature, history, religion, and writing.
CSP-SQSP # V-30064 (NSS-4)
San Quentin, CA. 94964 USA
(60Minutes Segment): bit.ly/2d0m2hs
(Project Audio Scope): www.soundcloud.com/inmateorgans
(Senate Bill): www.tinyurl.com/sb1419
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