Jacob Schmitt

I had fallen so far from what I wanted in life that I was prepared to do anything to gain acceptance and approval. What I ended up with was 30 years in prison — having never shed a drop of blood in my life. For many, that is where the story would end, but for me — that’s where it began. I can be a good person whether I am in prison or not. The truly beautiful thing about this realization is that its true for all of us. Every man and woman incarcerated has the ability to be in prison without allowing prison to be in us. Granted, it takes courage and commitment to stand in the face of an environment as inherently negative as prison and say: I will be more than this. But we can do it.
An End To “Us Against Them”

An End To “Us Against Them”

Convicts against the guards. When I first began my life within the prison industrial complex over 28 years ago, this maxim was a hard and fast reality. Since then, I have witnessed it fade into an often intangible concept - and I am grateful to see its decline. The...

HOPE

HOPE

Walking out the front door of prison. For those of us that live inside these walls and fences, this is the moment to moment dream that permeates our incarceration experience. We yearn to be reinstated to a status where we feel human again -- to begin anew the gift of...

We All Matter

This is an email I received from our remarkable friend Jacob, incarcerated in Washington’s Monroe Correctional Complex. Jacob is organizing an inmate fundraiser, to help us pay for our new website after we lost our funding. Oddly, America, and I suppose humanity as a...