I will admit some of the television shows I have watched and enjoyed aren't the most wholesome, one show that I have watched is "Orange is the new Black." It gets a bit graphic at times, but the story lines of the prisoners is very interesting. A friend knowing that I have watched the show gave me the book as a Christmas gift. After struggling through A Very Long Engagement, I wanted an easy read and I thought that would be a good, no fluff read. I never imagined that it would be so thought provoking. Now it is no deep read, not like The Alchemist that I just finished recently. So the other night I was reading it and this little passage really jumped out at me:
"But our current criminal justice system has no provision for restorative justice, in which an offender confronts the damage they have done and tries to make it right to the people they have harmed. Instead, our justice system of 'corrections' is about arm's-length revenge and retribution, all day and all night. Then its overseers wonder why people leave prison more broken than when they went in."
Restorative justice, I have never considered this, wouldn't this bring about more peace into the world? Revenge doesn't get us anywhere, it doesn't solve anything, it doesn't bring about healing. Restoration, that brings healing and love, and love wins. I have heard a hundred times that our justice system is broken and our jails and prisons are overflowing, we need restoration.
Of course there are the exceptions to the rule, serial killers and/or sociopaths, I don't know if restorative justice would even work, I am not an expert so I can't say whether they can change or not, I just don't know, but restoration seems ideal. I have no idea how one does this or what this looks like, but it is worth considering and examining.
I wish there was an easy fix, I wish we could break the cycle of poverty and crime and bring about restoration, we are so broken.
Quote from Orange is the New Black: My Year in Women's Prison by Piper Kerman.