I wonder as I drive by and see the warning
“Inmates At Work”,
What did they do to be enslaved?
Permitted to work unhindered by chains,
Supervised by unarmed guards,
Yet still not free to return home after a days work
They are prisoners none-the-less.
I pity them
And pray that this serves as a lesson learned.
Dressed in blaze orange jumpsuits
They are held up as a spectacles, less than human,
Humiliated publicly as part of their punishment.
What was the crime that revoked their freedom
Placing them in the counties charge?
Most young with full lives ahead of them
Will bear a badge of shame that will haunt them,
Taking away the promise of their futures
Until the day they die.
Having paid for their digression means little
As the weight of incarceration will shadow them all of their days.
Should we not show greater mercy and forgiveness,
Have we not all deviated at one time or another from what is considered just.
I have, of that I am certain, but by luck I remained free.
As a very wise Man once said,
“Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.”
I for one have placed my stone firmly on the ground.
~~ Dominic R. DiFrancesco ~~
Well said, Dominic.
Thank you so much my friend.
Very we’ll written piece with much to contemplate. I can’t keep my mind off of Sam Cook’s song…..Chain Gang……
Chain gangs are very very popular in Arizona, I seem them nearly every day. Great song by the way. 🙂
Very good poem, excellent points made. Also, their crimes may be lesser than many a free person, because justice and legal representation costs thousands of dollars. No longer innocent until proven guilty in this country. Guilty unless you have money to pay for a lawyer. So sad. Jeanne Marie
I absolutely agree with your comment, money talks, if you don’t have it you wind up behind bars. Not the America that I believed in.
So sad… so true.
There will always be a bone of sympathy in my body for those that have lost their freedom.
When you witness the humiliation and dehumanization of prisoners, a voice screams so loud in your heart to do something about it. And more often than not your hands are tied.
Sometimes writing about it is all you can do. Thank you for doing so. Maybe, in a way, a soul will be freed.
I am sympathetic for these individuals, based on the fact that they are are not bound in chains and are not being supervised by armed guards my guess is that these people are not serious threats to society. I wish we didn’t fill our prisons with people like these, it seems like such a waste. Maybe a lengthy community service would do them just as well along with a probation. Just a thought. Thank you for the thoughtful comment my friend and I apologize for the delay in responding.