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Who Cares for the Children of The Incarcerated: Discarded Forgotten Society
MODE Of Cosmic Therapy: Our Moralistic Duty To Mankind
A broken society of forgotten children is banging its way up the ladder of their demoralizing childhood while very few people are aware of the devastating lives they are being forced to live.
The unfortunate circumstances imposed on them are due to no fault of their own. Surprising as this may seem to some, this particular segment of population, abandoned and neglected, (children) has grown beyond imaginable leaps and bounds in the last few years.
Not many people have any reason to give a thought to the overwhelming effects caused by having a parent (s) incarcerated. But, today I propose a moment of conscious thought on their behalf.
The spiraling effects are more than upsetting. Not only do the children suffer due to their loss of parental love, supervision, respect, guidance and comradeship; they must endure the awful demoralizing labeling stigma referred and projected on them as ’prison spawn.’
These children regrettably, without any negligible say so, pay a heavy life-long penalty for their parents’ poor decision making faculties (mistakes).
It’s a heart rendering sobering reality for the children to endure, but sadder still is the stunning statistical data that states that more than 70 % of the children whose parents are incarcerated will end up in behind bars themselves.
Who cares? You should and every one else who is living in this land of the free civilized society of America, today.
Mandatory sentencing guidelines and a growing number of drug-related convictions are factors in a continued growth of inmates held in federal, state and local prisons and jails in the United States.
In other words, the bulk of the prison population is not found among those who have committed violent crimes.
The United States imprisons significantly more people than any other nation in the world. In fact, the PewCenter on the States reported in 2008 that an astounding one in every 100 adults in the U.S. now lives behind bars! And over the next two years, researchers predict the situation will get even worse.
At a particularly mind-blowing rate, more people are being locked up then ever before. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, in June 2008, a staggering 2,310,984 prisoners were held in federal or state prisons or in local jails – an increase of 0.8% from yearend 2007.
More importantly and certainly surprising, – The number of women under the jurisdiction of state or federal prison authorities increased 1.2% from yearend 2007, reaching 115,779, and the number of men rose 0.7%, totaling 1,494,805.
The vast majority of these incarcerated women are mothers.
What do these figures have to with you and your family? Everything! [Because, esoterically, humanely, conscionably and spiritually everything has something to do with “it”].
Why are these numbers important and how do we, as law abiding citizens, fix a stake in the activities of non-violent criminals? First on the agenda is awareness. We can not bury our heads in the sand and pretend like it doesn’t matter.
If you’re alive, reading these words, breathing, enjoying the benefits of your ‘somewhat’ preferred existence, then you can idealistically acknowledge that nothing that occurs is exempt from your own life.
We can not simply dismiss these people as not belonging to the entire body of our civilization any more than we can cut away the heart from the lungs. They are not some sort of unclassifiable insects to be placed under an undignified microscope for investigation, as if they are not part of the viable human race
IF, you simply can not relate on any recognizable human level, just think about the astronomical economical deterring negative impact the extenuating problems will present. FYI: We have countless prisons that are inestimably overcrowded.
This dilemma, alone, at the very least, would consume the best strategic minds to reduce the surmounting cost to house, feed, clothe and educate confined inmates. And, although local jails are generally operating under their stated capacities, all state and federal prisons are extremely overcrowded -- some as much as 33 percent higher than their official capacities.
Based on current projections, by 2011 the U.S. prison population will increase by 13% – which is triple the growth of the entire population as a whole – to more than 1.7 million. Supporting that increase in incarcerated people will cost American taxpayers and local/state budgets an estimated $27.5 billion. At that time, another 4 million people will also be on probation or parole.
Back to my original concern, however, what happens to the children of this huge cancerous growth?
The net effect is that states, counties, courts, sheriffs, and administrators are actively looking for ways to address the almost unmanageable issue. According to the latest findings, it is now estimated that 7 million children, or 10 percent of the population under the age of 18, have a parent under some form of correctional supervision.
While research is limited in this area, early indications from preliminary studies suggest, that children of incarcerated parents are three to six times more likely to exhibit violent or serious delinquent behavior.
* The Bureau of Justice Statistics estimates that 2.3 children are affected by the 1.1 million parents incarcerated in prisons or jails, up from 500,000 children in 1991.
* Approximately 75 percent of incarcerated women are mothers and two-thirds have children under age 18.
* Seventy-two percent of female inmates with children under age 18 lived with those children before entering prison.
* Six percent of women entering prison are pregnant.
* From 1990 to 2000, the number of mothers in prison grew 87 percent, while fathers increased by 61 percent.
* Fifty-four percent of mothers in state prison said they never had visits from their children.
* Approximately 55 percent of incarcerated men are fathers of children under the age of 18.
* Thirty-two percent of men in prison have two or more children under the age of 18.
* On any given day, there are approximately 1 million fathers behind bars.
* Fifty-seven percent of fathers in state prison report never having visits from their children.
The humanistic resolution concerning this life debasing problem resulting from the forgotten society of the children of inmates will not resolve itself without consciously motivated intervention. I have merely presented to you statistics without presenting or dissecting the emotional, mental, financial, spiritual, physical and educational needs of these deprived young ones.
Every child is precious; their talents/gifts irreplaceable, and their unique contribution significantly important to the entire weaving of the intricate fabric of mankind. What can we do? It begins with recognition of the sacred profound desire to move into this technologically advanced meteorite propelled American civilization with an upsurge in our consciousness.
We must embrace that which we don’t understand fully, comprehend completely and typically turn a deaf ear to simply because our minds are bombarded with other time-consuming meaningless activities.
If we can realize the catastrophic consequences of consuming plates that are much too full, we may just get a cosmic glimpse of the unbearable penalties.
“…Suffer not the children to come unto me: if anyone offends one of least of these; he has done it unto me…” (Paraphrased) It’s worth pondering when you get the time.