Its a hit show on cable TV’s Arts and Entertainment . Its just entertainment, right? Even on that level, we should be concerned. But most people fall into a trap of how “real” this reality show is. Want some reality? No municipality in their right mind is going to let you view into their hellhole of incarceration. Jails and prisons absolutely do not want transparency, because with transparency comes the need for accountability. Criminal justice is among the top leading “industries” in our nation and, as a business, they don’t want you involved in how they conduct affairs. “Shut up, be scared, pay your taxes and trust us, we know what’s best for you…” This works for the incarcerated as well as those paying the bills.

But, let’s get back to the entertainment portion of my thoughts. If caging humans and basking in the violence they cause amongst themselves, all while filming it for all to see, represents entertainment to you, we have clearly lost sight of our national values. The simple idea of this is disturbing. Perhaps because when it does happen in real life, it damages those involved. Violence on a stranger is damaging to your neighborhood… If you come to a neighborhood like my current one, because we have that misguided soul that just finished binge watching that show while spun out of his mind now with nothing to lose, its just as damaging. Perhaps more, because he just learned something new to do that damage with from those shows.

There are a lot of shows that glorify the happenings in prisons. Some of them are realistic, some of them are not. But none of them tell the true story of what rehabilitation looks like. They emphasize the gangs, the violence and the internal prison political machine driven by the convict code. But, if they showed real people changing and reshaping their real lives, how interesting would that be, right? As a taxpayer wanting a real change and a safe neighborhood, that kind of show should be an Emmy winner to you. I know it would be for me…

by Rory Andes

email me at using Rory Andes # 367649

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Rory Andes
# 367649
PO Box 888
Monroe WA  98272