Went to the mailbox yesterday to see if I received any letters and I got nothing, smh. What in the hell will it take to get more inmates to participate? I will have to double my efforts and send another thirteen letters this weekend. I already roped 1/13 inmates. Next time I will send a stamp and envelope with the letter to see if that is more effective.
Many of them are like, Why in the hell do you want to help me?… Why am I special? I have to convince them that I want nothing else other than to improve their mindset. It is almost like a mindset barrier that many men and women have to break open, in order to allow help. I’m not giving up, just realizing that I have to reach the ones who are open to change.
So I sent AJ some books. The first book is a dictionary, because it is literally like a translator in jail. It helps expand his diction. The second book I sent was Tupac ‘the rose that grew from concrete’ in hopes that he could be inspired by some of Tupac’s poetry. AJ says he likes poetry, and I think this would be the book he would read first. The third book I’ve sent him was ‘Man’s search for meaning’ by Viktor Frankl. You guys will automatically see me send this book to almost every inmate. This was a man who survived concentration camp under Nazi rule. Incredibly heartfelt book, it shows the power of a positive mindset under any circumstance. This book is hands down the greatest book for any one facing a difficult time. I can’t wait until I hear his take on the book(s).
I didn’t realize how nervous a project of this type could make me. I am sending letters to people who I’ve never met, hoping I can change their lives. Below is the actual letter. Tell me what you guys think. I should start receiving letters by the beginning of next week. I sent 13 letters Sunday night. We shall see how it goes.
Hello my name is Eddie star from THE LET PROJECT. The reason you are receiving this letter is fate. The let project is a project that improves the lives of the incarcerated through books and education. I run a wordpress blog where I share prisoners stories to a community that fosters the growth of individuals who have lost their voice and wish to be heard. The let project is not a cult, we are agnostic yet respectful of your religious rights. We aren’t a community that judges you for what happened in your past. Our aim is to educate you on enough topics through books and reading, to embolden you to follow your dreams in the real world beyond prison. Even if you never step foot out of prison, maybe you can inspire the next inmate who will. The let project will donate a dictionary to you first, and then afterwards whatever books we collectively recommend to fit your circumstance. We aren’t a group that is to be taken advantage of also. Despite the occasional books that will be donated in exchange for your letter participation, we will not advertise any solicitation for money or commissary items. We will promote your inmate number and jail location for people to write and correspond with you. Respond if you are interested in improving your mindset.
Raised in South Central, Los Angeles -now known as South Los Angeles- Ross witnesses a traumatic incident inside of his household. He witnesses his Uncle’s Murder. Moving to the other side of town, he resides on a street called Flower St, a street that runs parallel to the 110 fwy. Therefore, Ross and his friends became known as the “freeway boys”. He attended the local schools during a time when gang wars were at its prime. According to Ross, he never joined any gangs, even though he lived in the territory of the crips. He attended Dorsey High School and became a tennis star. He had played tennis so good that he was offered a scholarship, until they found out he was illiterate. Once scouts found out he was illiterate, he was of no use to the potential colleges. He ended up like just another Black 18 year old kid with no job or school, looking for a way to fill his idle time.
He started off small, then sold the narcotic PCP, then graduated to cocaine. He made a connection with a Colombian and the rest is history. You already know how the story ends. Drug dealer goes to jail and ends up broke. Well, he went to jail and came out blaming the informant who put him in jail, and the secret service that employed the said informant. The Contra Scandal was the real deal, and it had a catastrophic effect on the Black and African-American community. I was born in 1984, the era of “crack-babies”. So, I am not saying that what he claims happened is false; my gripe is that he diminishes his role, when compared to the macro level. The remorse for the actions he took were minimal, making it seem as if he was only a middle man. That is something that I vehemently disagree with him about. Conscientiously selling drugs to your own people, while seeing how the product affected families, was FUCKED UP. As any true drug dealer would privately admit, the bottom line was money. He apologizes, but only before making it seem accidental. That was what irritated me about the book.
When he got out of prison, he saw that someone stole his alias and moniker. Parading around stage, and doing world tours, a rapper was using his name and image to make entertainment money. He got offended by the business move and took the rapper to court. Wow!!! The irony of it all.
This book is based on an inner-city corrections officer who goes rogue. He talks about the ugly realities that exist inside the American prison system. Drugs, sex, murder, and hard liquor all wrapped into one book. He is vulgar and bawdy throughout the whole book. To be honest, you will need urban dictionary more than Webster’s Dictionary. He keeps it hood and gutter. It is very short and easy to read. By time you get to the part where the female officers are being auctioned off as prostitutes to shot-callers, you will become engulfed in the salaciousness of it all.
As I read the book, I could kind of tell he was pulling stories out of his ass to add shock value. I honestly cannot believe everything that was in this book.
Interesting read considering that nowadays, you have 4G cell phones being smuggled in prison for the right price. It is so rampant at this point, that many women on dating sites have to post “NO GUYS IN JAIL” on their profile.
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