You've got to check this out. I'll let the video do most of the talking, but here's the brief background: The Sustainable Prisons Project, a collaboration between The Evergreen State College and the Washington State Department of Corrections, brings biology, beekeeping, agriculture, and connecting with nature to prisoners. Really, really cool.Now connect that with other prison projects that attempt to do more than lock 'em up and throw away the key, such as The Prison Yoga Project and teaching meditation to inmates in LA County Men's Central jail. Then make the leap to studies showing how spending time among growing things can boost self-esteem, improve mental health, and make you feel more alive. Surely something, anything, that attempts to rehumanize, re-naturize those members of our society who haven't made positive choices is worth paying attention to.
As the video points out we've got 2.3 million people in prison in the United States. That's the greatest percentage of people in jail of any nation (23.4% of the entire number of people incarcerated in the world, with only 5% of the world's population). Just under 40% of those people are listed as non-Hispanic blacks, while this demographic category is just 12.6% of the US population.