This is the first in a series of essays we'll be publishing by prisoners who are currently incarcerated. We receive these submissions for Graterfriends, our monthly newsletter. We receive so many that not all of them can be reprinted in Graterfriends, so we've decided to give them a voice here as well.
I have a dream
A political statement of a Pennsylvania prisoner.
By Kevin Douglas Beiter
I have a dream, and it is a dream of a different world. A world wherein the life of one man is worth more than 2,000 pounds of steel.
It is a world too civilized to not see that our God given right of choice, our right to our own free will, is violated by the gilded cage; too civilized to not see that the laws of God and man are one and inseparable; too civilized to not see that an oath given in the name of this God is more binding than any shackles devised by man; and too civilized to not see that the hypocrisy of perjury is heresy and abomination before the same God.
I dream of this other world where the people refuse to stifle their own beliefs, that right outweighs every wrong, where people fear consequence more than change, and silence more than bondage.
It is a world beyond belief... it is a world where Heaven and Earth are not two, for in that world they have become one. It is a world that sees every punishment as cruel by its very nature.
But it is also a world that sees imprisonment as cruel; to the soul, to the body, and so importantly to the mind; one that does not deny that a simple cure for the mind is really a quick fix to the inescapable side effects of ailments known as loneliness, cabin fever, frustration, claustrophobia, anger, melancholia, hopelessness, and hatred.
It is a world that one day decided caging men like beasts of the field is more cruel and unusual than death, for such torments are like those spoken of for ten thousand years and more - the torments of the souls of the forever lost.
I have a dream - and her name is Freedom.