I Am Writing Someone In Prison

Back in December, a 22 year old woman in Wilmington, NC was involved in a drunk driving incident where someone was killed and another person seriously injured.  How I found out about her case is a long story I won’t get into, but the end results is that I decided to reach out to her.

Because humans are fallible, we sometimes make grave mistakes, which is what she did when she decided to get behind the wheel while intoxicated.  Many people make this mistake, sometimes leading to horrible consequences.  Some people get lucky and no one is hurt.  Knowing she was going through a great deal of pain, I felt compassion and sympathy for her.  I decided to write to her.  My initial letter was primarily to offer support.  I heard back from her about a month later (she had received numerous letters from people she didn’t know, and was too shocked and ashamed to respond for a while).  She wrote a very nice letter.  She turned out to be an mature, polite, interesting, introspective, and intelligent person.  She feels a great deal of sadness, remorse, and regret about what happened.  She plans to talk to young people about the dangers of drinking and driving.

I wrote her back, and we have continued to write and stay in touch.  We discuss a variety of topics and are getting to know each other.  I plan to continue to write to her, offer my support through her stay in prison (she was sentenced to 6 – 8 years), and try to influence her life in a positive way.  I think getting to know her will be a positive experience for me as well.

The Relative Value of $100 in the U.S. – By State

This is interesting.  The relative value of $100 in the U.S., broken down by state.  Nothing surprising; I knew CA and VA were very expensive (where I live), the cost of living is higher in the Northeast than most of the country, and the Southern states are mostly poor.  (Click on the image to see it in a larger size.)

therelativevalueof100intheus

 

 

10 Words Every Girl Should Learn

A brilliant, accurate, and infuriating article:  “10 Words Every Girl Should Learn“.  It talks
about how girls are raised differently than boys and are conditioned to be subservient,
polite (to a fault) and passive while boys are conditioned to be assertive and aggressive,
rude, and dominant.  This phenomenon is perpetuated when the children become adults,
and men are less likely to listen to women than men in a variety of settings and are also
given credit for women’s ideas in the workplace.  This article recommends what phrases
girls and women should incorporate to combat this inequality.   

Education Based on “STEM”

An excellent article appeared in the Washington Post about the dangers of focusing on
STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) as opposed to a broader liberal arts
education.  Being a philosophy major, I agree that focusing too much on specific technical
disciplines rather than a more well-rounded education does not put future generations at
advantage in the world; students should be taught how to think creatively and critically
and not be limited to learning specific technical skills.

Storytelling Psychological Perception Test

Take a very interesting picture storytelling psychological perception test that has been
used to determine personality characteristics since the 1930s.  My result:  Realist.  “Based
on what you saw in these images, you are the realistic type. Some would say you are
pessimistic because you can identify the cause of many unpleasant situations, correctly
evaluate the current state of events and predict how they would turn out, based on your
practical, logical and solution-oriented thinking. Basically, you see things just as they are
and this doesn’t make you a pessimist. You can successfully accept that sometimes things
don’t go as we want them to in life and you can easily adapt to that. You’re smart and
introspective: you tend to think of more than others do and can appreciate some alone
time. You are independent and persistent, you fight for what you believe in, making you an
inspiration to others.”