Book Review – Not A Crime To Be Poor by Peter Edelman

Written by Michael Henderson

October 26, 2021

I would like to present a book review / follow up to my latest post as my actual follow up was censured by the folks who don’t like the light to shine in their little corner of inhumanity. Again, and as always, my hope is to bring about as many minds as can be attracted to the dire needs of a new consciousness. One in which that light always shines into the deepest recesses of inhumanity.

Having a penchant for seeking out those most would consider a bit on the extreme side, I, to the contrary of the old idiom, do judge a book by its cover. At least by its title.

My latest find is by Peter Edelman, published by The New Press, 2017, entitled Not a Crime To Be Poor: The Criminalization of Poverty in America. This is not a book for the idle mind. Chock full of facts that are not willing to hide in the dark. This book unleashes facts about criminalizing debts by exposing one of most corrupt industries in history. The insurance industry under cover as the cash bail system has lobbied our politicians for years as police forces have ramped up to military levels of fire power.

Statistics throughout this book prove beyond any reasonable doubt the school-to-prison pipeline in America is a cultural cancer that is eroding the concept of the American dream. All personal takes aside, mental illness, poor fathers, public assistance benefits, including unemployment insurance swirled in with poverty, race and discipline in schools have created a hotbed of inhumanity leading many to believe that people in prison deserve to be in prison. I used to think the same way until I was thrust into the system under the very conditions this book exposes. You may wonder how an innocent person gets into the prison system. The lobbying groups connive, cajole, and flat out bribe politicians to write laws that nullify the constitution and the limits imposed by it upon the governments. But an even bigger problem exposed in this book leaves no doubt that complacency is the primary culprit to this stupefying revolving door system. The next time you pass judgment on someone who happens to be homeless, know that in many parts of the land of the free that person can be jailed and sent to prison for nothing more than not having what many take for granted every day. A home. Don’t miss out on a chance to have your eyes opened for you. Peter Edelman goes into describing the massively flawed penal systems as well and makes no mistakes in describing the people employed who range from the sadistic to the apathetic but most importantly the fact is that literally millions of men and women erode day after day in despair of never getting a second chance. Headway is being achieved at a snail’s pace but we need everyone to be counted. Mr. Edelman is doing his part by braving this book. What are you willing to brave?

As a closing I would like to let you know that the en mass head and face shaves at Columbia prison have ceased for the time being. But not without receiving my fair share of threats from whom the party was crashed. I’ll keep you all updated.

Truly, Michael

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