COLUMNS

Mistakes 143 - November 2009

by Demetrius "Hook" Mitchell

 

This recent month has been very special to me. It kicked off for me the holy month of Ramadan. Also, 9/11 is always special because it was the day I was conceived. (May God be praised for that, and may he reward my mom and day for the decision.)

Even though I received and understood that my offer to enter a drug rehabilitation program was not happening—although some prison time is now possible— I still feel like joyful in God’s presence.

It could be worse for me; I have just been moved next to a young man in his early 20s who has just received a prison sentence of 45 years to life [in county jail, Oakland, California]. The court recently took back a lower court’s sentencing decision to give one inmate nine years and four months, and requested the inmate return to receive a sentence of 14 years (instead of the nine).

When I went to court recently, young L.W. accepted 14 years for a string of 211s, and young Rich-Town accepted a plea deal for a sentence of 15 years and an official accounting of “two strikes” for his weapon possession and other crimes. Both of these individuals are 22 years of age. L.W. is like family to me, because I grew up with his mom and dad.

When I was moved recently, I was housed around one individual who was close to me in New York. I never asked him his situation. I tend to mind my own business; I have one goal and that is to come home as soon as possible to my family and friends, and to become as educated as possible and remain well aware of my personal goals, one of which is to help “Save the World.” This individual was also recently in the newspaper as the result of a heinous crime. (To me, he is a good brotha, down to the core of his heart.)

I really don’t become engulfed in others’ situations because I have learned one thing about myself, and that is I become too emotionally attached to people—certainly in incarceration—and so it’s not healthy for me to become closely attached. Also, I experience a heightened sensitivity which can overtake one’s situation while one is incarcerated.

-- Eid Mubarak –

 

Editor’s Note: “Eid Mubarak” can be translated into “blessed festival,” and it’s a traditional Muslim greeting used on the festivals of Eid ul-Adha and Eid ul-Fitr.

 

Demetrius "Hook" MItchell

Demetrius "Hook" Mitchell