Writer’s Name: Sheri Henry-Harrigan
Title: Freedom for All
What are the costs of freedom? How do we measure them? They say that the United States is land of the free and home of the brave. But over 200 years ago many of us were not and are still not free. Who or what determines freedom. I will discuss all of the issues and factors of dealing with freedom from different perspectives.
To be free is to be without restriction. So if that is the case then we are not free. We are tied to rules and laws of society. Rules and laws are meant to be broken. When they are, the consequences are grave. Murder of a person can cost twenty five years to life in prison. Is it worth it? Yes to the man who murdered his daughter’s rapist and is doing one hundred years in prison. Yes says the woman who murdered her abusive husband of seventeen years. They are now free of the problems that they have had. The man’s daughter can move on with her life knowing the man who hurt her is gone. The abused woman is free from abuse. The cost of becoming free cost them their lives. Is it fair? It’s not fair because all trials are not equal. Race has a lot to do with where a person ends up and how much time they will get.
If we look at the makeup of people in jail, it is a known fact that African Americans and Latinos make up the bulk of the population. Why is that? Is it that these groups have nothing better to do with their lives or is there a better reason. I believe that the criminal justice system has a way of letting down people of color. If the justice system worked there would not be unbalanced demographics in the jail system. People are there for crimes that they have not committed. People have been executed for crimes that they have not committed. Where is the justice in that? As a Black or Latino, American Freedom comes at a high cost. In some states they can’t even walk around without being racially profiled. Enough is enough. Freedom should be for all and in 2012 things should be getting better but they are not.
Can freedom be brought? We know that money makes the world go round; should it matter in cases and trials of freedom? No, but it does. Celebrities and people with money can buy their way out of trouble, while a person with little or no money has to go through hell and fight for their freedom only to have it taken away. The crimes can be equal but the punishment will never be equal. In this case the only color that matter is green.
Freedom to me is priceless. I enjoy being able to walk around and go where I please, when I want. We take our freedom for granted though. We don’t think about the people in prison. Why are they there? We only know of the crimes. We don’t ask “Did they do it?” “Why did they do it?” Is it that we don’t care or are we too busy taking our freedom for granted? One thing is for sure, if you have money then you can guarantee you will have more freedom. Being a certain color also guarantees more freedom. This is not the way things should be but they are. Only we can change ourselves by placing more value on freedom.