“I feel like I’m in a dream,” my friend says suddenly with a quick chuckle. I can’t tell if he is trying to be funny or hide a negative attitude, something I’ve been working on. “It feels like Ashton Kutcher should show up any minute now and shout ‘I got you!’ But instead I woke up from a shitty dream and I am in hell.”

I’m walking to our chow hall the other day, where we are arranged into rows as instructed by an officer. I eat, like is custom twice a day. I eat in my assigned row, I laugh with a few friends over some lame joke that only we find funny. As I’m leaving an officer is standing by the exit door, he’s famous for being cruel to us. I smile quickly, nervously, and as I exit he says to another inmate behind us “This place is such a hell hole, there is some entitled mother fu***rs here.” I think to myself, why doesn’t he take pride in his work? If he’s not happy, doesn’t he know he can leave? Why work in hell voluntarily if you don’t like it? Weird.

I have heard countless times how much folks hate it here, but its not from inmates. The staff who work with us despise their work. I wonder why?

Maybe its because they were promised a job where they can make a difference in the community but instead were given the keys to “hell.” Here’s what I don’t understand, they can change it so fast. Hey, here’s an idea, how about we create a place where people go for rehabilitation, we’ll send out the knuckleheads and keep the ones who want to change, help them get their lives together, teach them some new skills and when their sentence is up, we’ll happily let them go home…but healthy.

Or the can keep creating “hell.”

With Love
Jeff “Jeffebelle”