Bloated and out of control, the grotesque freak rolls unchecked from age to age. Ill equipped armies toss money colored pebbles that do not make a dent in its tough, hide-bound threat to mankind. Like a boulder shaped mudslide of sewage, it rushes head long toward a helpless sea of floundering humanity. Its name is PRISON.
Worldwide, there are at least 9 million incarcerated human beings. In the USA, the prison population has been fruitless but still multiplied to an excess of 2 million men and women, more than any country on earth and quadruple the number reported 25 years ago.
The big ugly blob snarfs up taxpayer money like nose candy. Its power is fueled by a tsunami of illegal drugs that breach our levees and flood our streets, drowning the guilty and the innocent in a stunning wake of destruction. Abandoned families succumb to homelessness; more fodder for the insatiable monster to perpetuate itself. With sharp tentacles that stretch from one generation to the next, it snatches orphaned and mistreated children and sucks out the very lifeblood of decency.
More than 236,000 drug offenders alone call state prisons their home. That is ten times the number reported in 1980. $46 billion is spent annually to house and feed this mega disorganized crime-time community of law- breakers. Each prisoner in this country is expected to cost $20,000 a year. It has been suggested that number will grow six times faster per capita than money available for higher education.
Rusty locks in ancient and decrepit firetraps or modern, state-of-the-art locks powered by computers in bright shiny block buildings, creak with age or snap with precision as ignorant volunteers continue to stream behind the unforgiving bars. The monster waddles on and balloons to unmanageable size, now the darling of political debate and vote getting pathos. It bares it nasty venom filled fangs with each carefully considered yet ineffective defensive attacks on its tough skin. It roars with bravado, knowing it has the upper hand as long as blind eyes and senseless perception do not discover how to choke off its meal ticket - the blood needed to perpetuate its dynasty.
HIV and Hepatitis C are just two of the diseases that threaten the monstrous prison population. In a short 25 years, 3,300 new prison facilities have been built in America. Others are overcrowded and dangerous. Most are understaffed. Health care can be hit or miss. Studies have shown they have done little to make communities any safer.
There is not really a drug war, only drugs. They flow in like honey-sweetened hemlock through open doors with invisible welcome signs. We know where the supplies are grown, why can’t we confront our enemy and burn the poison, rendering the monster impotent and useless. The foolish growers might be convinced to plant something healthy and worthwhile the world could use.
A well-planned prison break with tradition could stab the penitentiary ogre in its confused and misguided heart. We’ve been stomping its tail, not whomping its head. Big dopes with clear brains might be able to hear the life saving news that would throw open every locked door; the ones in their stale jails, reformatories and solitary confinements, but more than that, in their human hearts.
“I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it. For you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name.” (NKJV).
The KEY to spiritual freedom is multi-functional. When carried daily and used to unlock God’s Word, ambush by the prison monster is sure to be thwarted. The ripple effect would cause a symphony of click-click-clicks as doors unlock and captives are set free …music to our Lords ears.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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