“Prison Of My Own” by Nasir Salaam

Question, would you rather be physically incarcerated or mentally incarcerated? That’s a question that you’re questioning, what type of question is that? I pose that question because as someone who’s currently incarcerated, we’re viewed by a large population of the public as castaways that are no good for society. Some of it is partly true, and some of it is ignorance from not knowing or misinformation of how a prejudice system is designed to work primarily against minorities. Don’t get me wrong, wrong is wrong, right is right, the law is the law. By not abiding by these laws justice will prevail. What I’m speaking on is injustice prevailing far more than fair justice prevailing in this judicial system of ours here in the land of the free and home of the brave; America.

Allow me to take you on a statistical voyage of how mass incarceration is implemented in the good ol U- S- of A! Did you know with only 5% of the worlds inhabitants, the U.S has the worlds largest prison population? Alright, maybe you did. How about here in my home state, New Jersey has a higher incarceration rate than all but 6 nations? Not 6 states, 6 freaking nations, yes you read correctly! What’s staggering is African Americans make up 13% of the United States population, but 40% are in prison. The black youth are 30.6 times, and Latino youth are 5 times more likely to be committed to a juvenile facility than are white youth. For that to happen, it has to be done with calculated intentions with percentages like that. I’m no mathematician, but those numbers don’t add up, what do you think? When it comes down to it, why is mass incarceration continuously being used in America as medicine that has yet to heal that very same wound it harmed in the first place? Because according to a lot of studies over the years, putting more people behind bars is not an effective law enforcement strategy. Recent studies show that sending large numbers of people to prison or jail does not make us safer; rather, the rate of incarceration has a minimal impact on the commission of property crimes and essentially no impact on the commission of violent crimes.

I posed the question in the beginning of this piece would you rather be physically incarcerated or mentally incarcerated? Because ignorance only exist due to lack of information that does not allow you to offer a clear concise synopsis of said subject matter that you may come across. So instead, faulty propagandized fear mongering type of opinions are formed. Which in large part incarcerates you mentally because as they say, ignorance is bliss! Meaning, you are unwilling to learn or understand that which you know nothing about. To simply put it, we as humans understand very little about things that does not personally effect us so it’s hard for us to empathize another’s hardships and plights. When we all bleed, the color that you see is red, so why is this a race matter when you bleed the same blood that I bleed? This isn’t a race issue, it is a human issue that can be resolved, but big business aligned with greed blocks humanitarian efforts that boils down to common sense. I could spin this back to slavery & how this is the new Jim Crow, but we know enough information that should not allow us to be oblivious to what’s obvious. Want for others what you want for yourself! If it’s all good, may that energy circulate throughout the world with intentions to reciprocate.

Disclaimer: At Black With No Chaser, we believe in providing a platform for all voices. This series is brought to us by our incarcerated brother Nasir Salaam. We hope you enjoy and encourage his willingness to share his mind with us. Nasir can be found on Instagram @freenazz Nazz On IG also help Nasir reach 1000 signatures by clicking on the link Change.Org for his wrongful conviction. Learn more about his story.

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