Prison Rehab | Letters | Chicago Reader

Prison Rehab 

Dear Reader,

I enjoyed Steve Bogira's January 8 article, "Senseless Sentences," and am also dismayed at the inequities in our judicial system. The article lamented that "Rostenkowski isn't the first former public official to have a change of heart about prison after feeling its sting firsthand," but that it always happens too late since he can no longer pass laws, just make speeches. Well, it turns out that a great deal can be done by convicted politicians nonetheless.

I wish Mr. Bogira had described the work of Charles Colson and his Prison Fellowship Ministries organization. Beyond the in-prison volunteer work and the Angel Tree program that distributes Christmas gifts to the children of incarcerated parents, Colson has created the Justice Fellowship to lobby for prison reform, such as sensible rehabilitation rather than rote punishment. This grassroots effort is supported by thousands of concerned citizens who recognize crime is more than a broken law. Crime victims and their families are violated and injured. Communities lose their security and sense of well-being. Offenders are warehoused and dehumanized but never really held accountable, and their families lose their support. Current initiatives and more information can be found at

Dave Homiak


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