Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Martha Stewart 

I've never really cared about her either way - although I think it's bullshit that she actually got prison time for what she did. But, clearly, she did show a lack of respect for authority - and to an extent believed herself above the law, maybe.

But I have to say that I admire her for using this experience to remind her fans of how sad life is for so many who are incarcerated, and to encourage reform of our insane drug laws:
When one is incarcerated with 1,200 other inmates, it is hard to be selfish at Christmas -- hard to think of Christmases past and Christmases future -- that I know will be as they always were for me -- beautiful! So many of the women here in Alderson will never have the joy and wellbeing that you and I experience. Many of them have been here for years -- devoid of care, devoid of love, devoid of family.

I beseech you all to think about these women -- to encourage the American people to ask for reforms, both in sentencing guidelines, in length of incarceration for nonviolent first-time offenders, and for those involved in drug-taking. They would be much better served in a true rehabilitation center than in prison where there is no real help, no real programs to rehabilitate, no programs to educate, no way to be prepared for life "out there" where each person will ultimately find herself, many with no skills and no preparation for living.
I guess I just like the fact that there isn't any self-pity in her letter; rather, she's focusing on people who are true victims of prosecutorial excess. Good work, Martha.

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