Could the Nation’s Skyrocketing Murder Rate Lead to a Successful GOP Led, Fear-Based Election Campaign in 2022. It Did in the 80s

Today we update you on how Rethink is working with stakeholder teams to prepare for the Interim Committee Hearings and how you can plug in: public banking, worker cooperatives, predatory lending, K-12 education, public safety, public power, Green Amendment all working to advance bold initiatives. We also offer a short guest post from frequent contributor Adam Wasserman on the implications of the alarming rise in the murder rate. Finally, our Retake Conversation with two Maine energy activists, as they laid out their efforts to resist Avangrid and form a statewide public utility. Read on!

Rethink Behind the Scenes:
Rethink Working the Interim Committees with Ally Teams

Since the last session Rethink has conducted interviews with over 20 legislators and from those conversations we have begun to better understand how the legislative process and the Interim Committees (IC) are linked and how proactive conversations with legislators and IC staff can result in legislators achieving a deeper understanding of complex legislation well in advance of each regular session. Through this process, we are also cultivating a different kind of relationship with legislators, more personal, and collegial. For now, the process is more educational and collaborative than advocacy focused work and so we are not encouraging letters to legislators to support initiatives. We want to lay the groundwork for that support in a non-advocacy environment.

We are working in several policy areas:

State Public Banking: I meet with leadership from Alliance for Local Economic Prosperity on about a weekly basis, sharing information and insights gleaned from conversations with legislators and sharing ideas about the kind of panelists and information AFLEP will want to organize for each of the ICs before which they will present. At present, we are uncertain, but hopeful, that legislation to advance public banking will be introduced in 2022. Fingers crossed.

Green Amendment: The Steering Committee for this effort is statewide and diverse. It meets weekly to plot strategy. Since the GA is a constitutional amendment, the Joint Resolution to put it to a statewide vote does not have to be on the governor’s call and so it will certainly be reintroduced in 2022. as it will certainly be reintroduced.

Sustainable Economic Democracy for NM (SEDNM) and Worker Owned Cooperatives. The goal for this team is first to come to a better understanding of the variety of alternative business structures that foster increased worker involvement in management decisions. A rotating facilitator guides a small team that is organizing research on the efficacy of worker owned cooperatives and other structures. Members of the team include leadership from Cooperative Catalyst, Alliance for Local Economic Prosperity, Prosperity Works, Earth Care, Fast Forward Strategic Consulting (Eric Griego) and P-Brain Media, a small business consultation firm. The group has met with national cooperative affiliates and has created a survey to be circulated among small business operators. It is not likely that legislation for this work will be introduced in 2022, as bills must be on the governor’s call, but this is one effort that, with a good education effort, should achieve bipartisan support from urban and rural communities.

Public Power Partners. This partnership is comprised of leadership from the Land Office, Renewable Taos, and New Energy Economy with significant consultation offered from various utility experts, lawyers and environmentalists. The group is almost finished with a position paper and pro forma that outlines the public benefit from a variety of energy generation and distribution models appropriate to NM. It is unlikely that this effort will result in a bill in 2022, but the IC appearances will cultivate a better understanding of the potential of public power and the experience with different structures in other states. As part of the education effort, Rethink has organized a zoom webinar with advocates from Maine who are advancing a bill to create a statewide public utility and seek a divorces from Avangrid on July 8 (see below).

36% Small Loan Rate The small rate lending effort is actually being led by an NGO team comprised of ThinkNM, New Mexico Center on Law & Poverty and other legal and economic justice organizations. Rethink has been meeting frequently with Fred Nathan and Kristina Fischer to hone IC regular session strategy. We are told that the Governor will place this on the call in 2022.

Each of these groups is initiating contact with IC chairs and staff, and scheduling expert panels throughout the summer and fall. The intent is to share information in a much less formal setting than during regular sessions. In ICs our expert panels will present for 15 minutes and then engage in questions and answers with legislators for 45 minutes to an hour. This kind of explorative discussion will help inform legislators and help advocates identify strong allies and those with concerns.

How You Can Be Involved

Rethink has been organizing twice monthly Zoom Huddles to keep volunteers informed and to organize their participation in aspects of this work and in researching other transformational initiatives that can be translated into legislation going forward. In truth, the work we are doing now is very different and it has taken us awhile to figure out exactly how best to utilize volunteers and we really don’t want to waste their time. But we are now getting our arms around the process and how volunteers can plug in. We have a small number of individuals and teams already working on initiatives related to tax and revenue and election reform, public power, and we have learned from that process. Now we feel ready to expand that work to other areas. For example, we know we want to conduct research into:

  • K-12 Education. Exploring mechanisms through which the state could invest its reserves and increase its revenues to better support public education, energy generation and transmission, broadband and other infrastructure;
  • Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform. See today’s feature below for an outline of the concern we hope to address;
  • Infrastructure in rural and tribal NM.
  • Local food systems; and
  • All of the initiatives for which we already are involved in collaborative teams (above).

While we certainly need researchers and writers, we also need volunteers to perform more administrative tasks and we need ideas and input. If you would like to explore getting involved, click here to complete a 1-minute survey to indicate your interests and then participate in our next Huddle on Tuesday, July 6 at 6pm. Click here to register. Stay tuned! Better yet, get involved.

Zoominar Featuring Maine Leaders Opposing Avangrid Seek to Form a State Public Power

Thursday, July 8, 6pm-7:30pm In Conversation with Maine Energy Activists. We get to hear it straight from Maine residents who are fighting Avangrid as if their lives, power and forests depended upon their winning the battle. Hearing from the “Mainers” will be more than enough to convince you that NM must be nuts to even be considering the Avangrid merger. PNM has been bad enough, but why would we accept a mega corporation from Spain that has a truly terrible track record of exploitation, avoiding regulation, failure to pay fines, and manipulation of legislatures in the US, UK, Spain and the Global South? And now Iberdrola CEO is being beinb investigated for fraud. Find out what is at stake and find out how Avangrid’s offensive corporate behavior has caused Mainers to seek an alternative to for profit monopoly utility. Hear from:

  • Vaughan Woodruff. Vaughan’s experience within the local and national solar industry is broad. He was chair of Maine’s solar industry trade association during the height of policy battles, and was lead instructor for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Instructor Training Network in New England and New York. Vaughan has been an outspoken advocate for renewable energy in Maine and has extensive experience implementing solar power within the Central Maine Power/Avangrid/Iberdrola utility territory. He has testified at the Public Utility Commission and is a powerful advocate for new legislation in Maine that would create a public power utility, Pine Tree Power, to  protect the people of Maine from Avangrid’s incompetent, unreliable service and obstruction of distributed solar power.
  • William Dunn, President of Sunset Point LLC Bill Dunn specializes in electricity market design and implementation, ancillary services, utility and power pool/market operations, inter-utility coordination, contractual power supply arrangements, and transmission access and pricing. Bill has over 49 years of experience in working with electric utility organizations of all ownership types (i.e., public, private, local and federal). He has held senior positions in utilities and on power pool/market committees. Bill is a leading advocate and lobbyist for the newly proposed public power legislation in Maine and has testified extensively about the failures of Central Maine Power, Avangrid and Iberdrola to serve the public interest in Maine.

Click here to register.
And Tell Your Friends

Maine Energy Activists on Public Power and Avangrid, a Rethink Zoominar

Thursday, July 8. Hear from William Dunn and Vaughan Woodruff and ask questions about their experience battling Avangrid and fighting to create public power in Maine. We will have far more time for discussion than in the Conversation above, so if this sounds interesting, please register by clicking here.

Skyrocketing Murder Rates Offer GOP a Message to Run On. This is a Problem

The murder rate across the nation is skyrocketing. Adam Wasserman, one of our Rethink researchers became alarmed as he considered how during the 80s and 90s escalating violence throughout urban America had been used by the GOP to mount fear-based campaigns that led to huge GOP election victories and a war on drugs and mass incarceration campaign that has decimated communities of color. More recently the same kind of fear-based campaigns has fueled opposition to most any immigration or refugee resettlement. Adam is concerned that the rise in the murder rate could translate into a messaging effort to GOP voters that could result in disaster in 2022. Thank you, Adam. Read on!

Adam Wasserman: The Implications of the Increases in Murder Rate Across America

I am deeply, deeply worried that any progressive agenda is about to be derailed by the recent rise in crime (murder to be specific—other types of crime are not going up). The research I’ve done on policing makes it clear that the jump in violent crime that started in the mid-60s was absolutely central to the success of Republicans (Nixon, then Reagan) and the decades long repression of African Americans under the guise of the ‘war on drugs.’ Crime was seized on by conservatives and racists and weaponized to win over frightened white voters. Liberals lagged but largely went along. I don’t think any other issue was as important to the realignment of American politics in this period.

No one really knows what caused the rise in crime from the mid-60s to the 90s. But that didn’t really matter then and it won’t matter now either. The perception that crime is going up, that the streets aren’t safe, and that ‘they’—black and brown people—are out of control will be widespread, and will be exploited and magnified on the right.

The 60s crime rise was blamed on civil rights and black people getting uppity, egged on by crazy hippies and students who called all police ‘pigs.’ Today’s crime is easily connected to BLM and post-Ferguson, post-Floyd activism, egged on by woke liberals who want to abolish the police.

The NYC mayor’s race apparently turned on fears of rising crime, with the winner being a former policeman while progressive candidates fell behind. This is where I’m afraid the whole country is headed.

Biden I’m sure sees this and is trying to get ahead of it, emphasizing he never supported de-funding the police and now rolling out a big anti-crime package. He will get flack from the left for favoring police hiring and more money for policing. From a strict policy standpoint there are things to criticize. But it’s vital not to let this issue be monopolized by the right.

Progressives must have a coherent response. Clearly ‘de-funding’ is a terrible message, but the underlying idea of putting money into community programs and support services that free the police to do their core job of stopping violent crime, is a message with some potential traction. Connecting the rise in murders to easy access to guns, has potential traction. Making police more trusted in minority communities—who desperately want more police protection, not less, but don’t want more of the kind of policing they get now—has potential traction.

But these things take time. When people get scared, they want action right away. This is hard to deliver in a way that doesn’t make things worse.

Not sure what we can do but making the progressive community more aware of this dynamic is a start.

Thank you, Adam. I share your concerns.

In solidarity and hope,

Paul & Roxanne

Categories: Criminal Justice

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3 replies

  1. Since this extreme violence outburst is drawing lots of attention, I do not see how there is any ONE group or philosophy or political identity that can use it more effectively than another to get SOME point across.

    As is now usual, most of these henious crimes are done by white males of middle age or younger, and run the gamut of scenarios. These actions are a glaring symptom of the train wreck our country is emulating. It is a statement about the absence of values toward biotic life, of any kind, for any reason. Except in self-defense or defense of an innocent, killing has zero credibility as a sane or valued behavior.

    As to all the other stuff Rethink/Retake is involved with, it has become quite obvious to me, and no doubt others, that each and every issue that might result in a way forward, out of the gaping maws of Angels of Extinction, are bottlenecked in just one place – the human bodies in the House and Senate.

    They are not in charge of anything. A number of holdovers from the Teea Party run the two bodies due a complete lack of professional staff. They are genetically grafted to the Big Ones, oil, gas, uranium, electricity, mining, water, agriculture, tourism, federal lands and ranching/killing wildlife as what some stupidly call sport.

    It would seem to me that a vastly different approach is needed if any radical progress will ever be made, and that involves both overwhelming these politicians with both detailed facts and personal encounters with good citizens, and getting a revolution inside the House and Senate started that throws Wirth and Egoff and several other hench-personsouted by their own.

    I am not someone who deals with psychological and dramatic wrangling, but I can see a serious arterial blockage squeezing the life out of this state, and I know it has not been a stochastic accident, and blowing it apart will not be done via conventional means.

  2. You want ideas, so here is a start of my long, long understanding I’ve developed concerning these issues.

    I’ll begin for now with some clarity of some dynamics of the patterns of violence, fear, pain, repression, desperation, and despair that exist in society.

    Then, I’ll mention two folks in the political world I think you should deeply consider and connect with or at least contact, really clarifying, accomplished, and involved individuals, that work to address these kinds of issues in what seem to me to be really useful ways from opposing sides of the political spectrum: Melanie Stansbury (D) (whom I favor) and Mike Moores (R) (whom I consider to seem to be one of the most impressive Republicans I’ve had on my radar in recent times, a person with ideas worth considering and weighing against their worthy opposition in a consideration that could lead to really great improvements in the ideas we are working with, linked to a Republican who potentially could help drive his party in a direction of reasoned thinking again instead of violent movements meant to inspire conversations and policy changes and considerations, in which the violence drives the dialogue through attracting attention, motivation, responsiveness, and so on, instead of having that function take place largely through exploration of comparisons and contrasts in good ideas about potential options that clash in ways that provide the clarity and inspiration to explore and respond without the physical violence)

    Then I’ll explore a little about what I think would be a good role for the police and then a little of what I understand to be best in potential and actual prison reforms, and I’ll attempt to summarize that section.

    Finally, I’ll provide some of my contact information, in case you want to follow up with me about this or other things.

    I could go on and on, but I feel that this already is on the long side for the time and attention you might have available for now.

    I’ll provide some concluding comments at the very end for some closure.

    First, in approaching some of these topics concerning achieving clarity about what is going ln with violence and how to approach dealing with it effectively and helpfully, you might want to consider that a number of people would rather die than experience excruciating pain.

    Excruciating physical, psychological, energetic, and spiritual pain can come from excruciating trauma, overwhelming stimuli from triggers, extreme repression and censorship, and a sense of improper or undesired kinds of attachment, support, bonding, and freedom, or lack thereof, to self-express, contribute to something worthy with autonomous control, exhibit and display competence, and safely, securely, and successfully self-sustain.

    Of course, physical as well as energetic and psychological abuse can lead to physical pain as well.

    Also, if a person feels like enough of a failure and feels blocked to achieve success to the point that quality of life, purpose, joy, fulfillment, love, sense of grounded, worthy identity with innocence, beauty, integrity, bounty, drive, direction, embraced self-expression, and hope seem impossible and replaced by a sense of impossibility, emptiness, pain, sufferring, and pointlessness, a person can lose a sense of purpose and motivation to live life positively if at all.

    Some who suffer turn their pain inwards, leaning towards becoming self-depricating and constantly beating themselves up internally, thinking they must be a complete failure, incapable of success, that they always are doing something wrong and are incapable of achieving their standards of success no matter how hard they try or how competent they may seem to be in so many ways on the surface or to others who don’t seem to understand the importance of their personal standards.

    Some people who are disturbed and traumatized make an extreme effort to be kind and nice to others, perhaps feeling the need to treat others with extreme levels of any possible levels of kindness while feeling worthless inside because as much support and kindness they might give to others, they don’t necessarily know how to get the support, understanding, compassion, and kindness they need for themselves.

    In contrasting situations, disturbed and traumatized people may get angry at the sources of their traumas they perceive as coming from outside of themselves.

    Angry people may want to express their anger in various ways.

    Some may turn to various kinds of violence as a form of expression to influence the outside factors that do not seem to come purely from themselves.

    Boundary control can be very important to an angry person.

    Violence can be seen as one way to influence boundaries and control issues.

    Violence can be seen as a persuasive self-expression that gets attention, makes a lasting impression, presents a problem in a potentially clarifying way, and may be a stimulus for problem-solving, caring, compassion, understanding, responsiveness, and healing, an opportunity for a directive, persuasive, forceful purpose to be influenced into being left as a worthy legacy, as opposed to the empty feeling of purposelessnes and nothingness when there is a sense of complete personal failure and hopelessness for any kind of influence towards probelm-solving, breakthroughs, exploration, investigation, discoveries, understanding, and ultimate success, even if that success is through others in a kind of follow-up legacy to the prompt for attention, action, and clarity of prioritization of important issues that define purpose at a level for individuals and society that they practically are essential to address in order to achieve the kinds of success that seem necessary to support survival itself in terms of giving life and effort a point.

    Some who are traumatized and overwhelmed or without access to viable solutions get blocked and involved in censorship and psychological repression issues that can affect memory as well as physical and mental illness.

    Often, mental illness may present obstacles to processing, movement, speech, breathing, sense of internal self-expression, ability to connect with a self-accepted core sense of known, recognized, secure identity, physical self-control in terms of movements and habitual behaviors, traditional modes of perception, verifiable senses of reality, control over internal thinking, sense of identity, emotions, sense of self-control over internal mental and emotional processing, internal senses of psychological influences from one’s internal world interacting with the outside world, and impulsive, automated, triggered physical behavioral responses that reflect internal fears and repressed issues that beg desperately for release in an internal environment in which it may seem like danger and fear are a constant, hypervigilance is a requirement just to begin to survive, get along with people, and succeed with any small, survival-level degree of success, and trust of others practically often might be virtually impossible because it is hard not to perceive that they constantly condemn you for everything you possibly might have done wrong or just even might have been able to have been interpreted as having done wrong, as if guilt before proven innocence is deemed to be the proper treatment for your psyche by everyone, when you deal with them in any way that isn’t practically provable beyond any possible doubt to be a good and decent way for you to be seen by them in a 100% clear, obvious, completely lacking doubt, evident way that there is absolutely no doubt at all.

    It can be difficult to trust when it seems like condemnation is lurking around every corner, attached to every thought, perception, item, and person, no matter what, whether or not the reality being condemned deserves a judgement of innocence or guilt, and there seems to be a perpetual need to manage crises and danger of the uncalculated, unprepared for, negative consequences constantly being threatened in your perceptions as being in store for you in massive, scary, chain reactions of emergency situations the moment your hypervigilance fails you.

    Some go in the direction of struggling to manage these difficulties of impedence of function, perception, control, and so on, which most likely are the psyche’s way of desperately trying to stop the individual’s honest, clear expression of his or her internally repressed issues to the outside world.

    For such an individual, most likely, the psyche has decided that the revelation of the key core problems and issues is too dangerous to the individual’s social and practical survival, perhaps because there could be reactions of fear and aversion or rejection with others just as fear and trauma has developed in the individual, until solutions and resolutions have been developed by the individual and the mind, so that the revelation and release of repressed internal worries becomes safe socially because others don’t have to traumatize themselves with the extremeties of the problems the same way upon hearing them because the solutions are at hand, giving the individual a chance to reveal while being safe and socially accepted, thus allowing healing to take place.

    If violence emerges in any form at any point that comes across as risk or danger to self or others in connection to mental illness, it is not necessarily strictly a result merely of having the mental illness.

    Mentally-ill people can be quite mild and bent on trying extremely hard not to publicly invoke others’ rejection, even if they feel rejected by everyone around them constantly internally.

    If there is that emergence of risk and danger to self or others publicly with reality of intentional action to back it up, a mentally troubled individual’s violence stemming from an interaction with mental illness issues usually might arise mostly due to the mind’s perceived need to deal with a key difficult issue that seems so essential to address and seems so repressed, censored, condemned in terms of practically any expression or attempt to solve the problem, completely filled with a sense of blocking and shutdown of any kinds of attempted potentially appropriate solutions, and so on, that the individual becomes desperate and willing to entertain solutions that don’t make desired levels of sense, in order to have any hope of success at addressing the need and problem sufficiently to relieve some of the constant torture being experienced by the psyche due to the extreme perceived level of need involved.

    At the point of extreme desperation, for instance, a mentally disturbed person may be willing to entertain taking seriously an otherwise ridiculous-seeming solution offered up by an auditorily or mentally hallucinated voice, even if the individual largely has attempted to ignore ridiculous-seeming comments by that perceived voice or fellow voices up to that point.

    So, the act that may then endanger that individual’s self or others as a result is more of a desperate risk arising to try to meet an extreme psychological need extremely difficult to try to meet any other way than being simply a result that the person is dealing with mental or emotional imbalances which might be very difficult or painful for that individual to try to manage and/or endure.

    An individual may have managed and endured horrible internal difficulties and emergency considerations, preparations, fears, and protections for quite some time without obvious externalized action, risk, danger, and incident.

    If an irresponsible action is taken by a mentally-ill person, often there is a deliberate aspect to it, but it feels unavoidable, like a person who is backed into a corner and feels like he or she is signing a contract under duress because something has to be done, and that irresponsible-seeming option seems like it could be the only apparent option, no matter how bad an idea it seems to be.

    The individual likely is at a point of desparation for an unlikely solution to a problem that seems impossible but absolutely necessary to solve as soon as possible.

    In another case, the clarity or lack thereof of reality for a mentally-ill person may be so severely unclear and distorted, compared, perhaps, to other people’s claimed perceptions, that the mentally-ill person may not know what the correct action is to take to keep him or herself safe, perhaps because he or she does not know for sure whether or not a perceived threat was real.

    He or she may not know whether his or her mind distorted his or her perception of reality, and therefore may not know for sure if the perception of a threat was real, and then whether or not to act to defend him or herself based on information that has a need to be sufficiently established in his or her mind as being factual in order for the individual to know that a potentially necessary self-defense reaction is warranted and okay.

    In the case that a mentally-ill person’s perceptions are compromised in a self-defense situation, perhaps in a context of what appears to be a policeman or such type of person deciding that a guilt before proven innocence-type potential condemnation might be in order, one that could result in violence or danger from the policeman or such person, resulting in potential trauma or death for the mentally-ill person, the mentally-ill person can be very afraid and uncertain about the correct self-defensive action or inaction to take and can feel like he or she is walking on eggshells, trying to figure out what the right thing to do is.

    Perhaps the mentally compromised individual is physically, mentally, and emotionally incapable of the level of self-control required to comply with certain demands an officer or authority figure might make, such as to move, speak, act, or explain a certain way.

    The mentally-ill person may feel so afraid, incapable, shutdown, and compromised that he or she may feel very limited, nervous, shy, and reluctant when trying to figure out how to respond to a policeman or any other authority figure making demands that could carry severely damaging consequences if the mentally-ill person fails to meet those demands in a situation in which failure to be capable of meeting the demands appears to be potentially probable and unavoidable.

    On the other hand, the policeman or other authority figure might perceive that this person is an unknown, a problem that must be solved with no obvious and clear solution, someone who appears perhaps rebellious because demands might not be met.

    The assumption is that some kind of consequences must be enacted to make sure the job requirements of the policeman or authority figure appear to be met, even if the action taken to force unnatural consequences is damaging rather than healing.

    The person with the job wants to meet the perceived duties of the job, which are based on ideas formed sometimes by grasping at straws for solutions, instead of being grounded by a real connection in the moment to what actually is going on and what response needs to happen to be clear about boundaries and desired directions but at the same time be flexible and spontaneous while involving compassion, caring, and healing.

    Many responses to situations that aren’t based on the best information can be carried out with the intent to meet perceived job requirements and duties or interpretations of rules or laws but then have possible negative consequences everyone might face because the wrong action is being taken to respond to the situation, an action that is damaging rather than healing.

    The policeman or authority figure might see it as his or her job, his or her necessary duty to perform successfully, to deal with this person and solve this problem, even if the policeman or authority figure is aware in some way that he or she does not know the best way or perhaps any good or reasonable way, according to his or her aware knowledge base, to solve or deal with this problem and correctly help or address this person.

    As a result, a policeman or authority figure can resort to unwarranted, unnecessary, and unhelpful violence and other traditional procedures thought to be possibly useful attempts to address and solve the problem and fix the person without any deep, reality-based, thought-through, substantial collections of evidence and compassionate, considerate, attentive listening, observing, thinking, and problem-somving to back those methods up.

    I would encourage you to get in touch with Melanie Stansbury and look into and possibly talk with Mike Moores about issues of violence and police.

    Also, you might explore encouraging the model of how some police used to operate on the East Coast, perhaps Boston, Massachusetts, for instance: acting as public servants to help people with problematic situations, like the person with the car that broke down or the old lady trying to cross the street, as gentlemen and ladies might enact chivalry in a certain period of history within a certain kind of cultural value system.

    In addition, I suggest encouraging law enforcement to move in the direction of being gentle, kind, friendly, and forgiving in their approach to getting to know and gathering information from people who have been labled as bad, evil, criminal, wrong, terrible, twisted, incurable, demented, crazy, paranoid, extreme, frightened, weak, stupid, unapproachable, sinful, and so on.

    I would hope that we can understand that people who feel judged in a condeming way and labled, and who feel like failures and feel like they are irredeemable and have no hope, no opportunities they believe in and enjoy, and no room for improvement sometimes due to a lack of support and freedom, can feel a bit unmotivated to cooperate with those who are not kind, compassionate, understanding, attentive, responsive, and helpful to them.

    A person who feels like there is nothing helpful left to try can decide that what he or she does really doesn’t matter, and maybe if they rebel and try to get attention through violence, maybe someone will pay attention to that person’s plight and contribute something that will make the violent person’s life meaningful because at least a message finally was more clearly communicated and there could be a positive response as a result.

    We want to find out the information that will help us as a society to deal collectively with the psychology, culture, trauma, repression, and so on that leads to crime, so there is compassionate and effective crime prevention instead of a so-called response that just escalates and inflames violence when crime takes place, often having that inflaming effect because clear, effective, understanding, honest, safe communication options seem to be blocked.

    We will have to understand that we might do well to take the approach, truly, of loving our enemies with the deep, warm, non-sexualized, non-dominating, non-violent, safe compassion, caring, love of a good friend, authoritative parent, and inspirational and devoted teacher, so that we listen to those we might be tempted to label as enemies, to listen to them carefully, and give great attention and care to learning the detailed and deep truths of their sides of the story, digging with a sincere, real, and enforceable offering of complete safety and hope for redemption to find and arrive at the core roots of innocence of where they come from so we can find how they lost their ways and how to help restore them and incorporate that restoration and understanding of it into our systems of laws, justice, goverment, negotiation, adaptation, flexibility, spontenaity, cultural negotiation, socialization, definitions of appropriateness, compassion, aid, communication, societal contributions, freedoms of choice, activities, expressions, acceptance of identities, safety, security, interaction, responsiveness, de-escalation, reduction of depressive senses of loss and rejection, putting an end to repression in safe ways, and so on.

    I think it is time that we as a society consider making it our goal and aim to understand, restore, and learn the complete truth from criminals instead of trying to destroy them and thinking that destruction somehow will make things better when it only increases the traumas involved.

    Often, good prison reform involves a structured prison environment with access to possibilities for improvement, positive expressions of creativity and innovation, and development of healthy skills and abilities in which extremely out-of-control behavior or fear of the other prisoners might be treated with more isolation and privacy, not necessarily in a cruel way, but in a way that might allow for the reduction of overwhelming amounts of overstimulation and outer traumas that might add to the complications of trying to negotiate the overwhelming amounts of inner traumas contributing to the desperate cry for help that might manifest itself in undesired behaviors.

    The ability to process traumas and safely release repression is key to good prison reform.

    Such prisons often have additional levels to the more isolated, quieted, calmed, less-triggering levels of overwhelming stimulus areas.

    Additional levels can be accessed upon calmer, more desired, more self-controlled behavior and mutual desire by those involved for the occupants to access those levels.

    Explorations of boundary control issues may come up when transitioning to more stimulating areas with more access to more privileges and items.

    These boundary control issues are best keenly attended to with careful observation of noticeable surface incidents, issues, and patterns involved, understanding of correlations, relationships to communicative expressions, and underlying issues, and with good strategies of appropriate, helpful, effective, secure, sustainable, successful, tested, thought-through, proven stategies, such as redirection, adaptive least-violent responsiveness, and reorganization, done and thoroughly prepared for ahead of time as much as possible and also in immediate but not overly hasty and uncomfortable response to issues as they arise.

    The additional, more stimulating levels of the prison, attainable upon better levels of self-control, healthy behaviors, calm trauma processing, and safe release of repression, might offer privileges such as education, and attentive, interactive discussions, perhaps psychological, educational, administrative, or spiritual interactions, as well as explorations, trainings, and desired work opportunities in which the prisoner might be allowed to contribute to choice considerations and decision-making while participating in chosen activities not forced but allowed with increasing amounts of freedom concerning how desired activities are conducted within acceptable parameters, even to the point that the prisoner might be able to help develop and choose, eventually, what those parameters are and help to develop a sense of empowerment in which a sense of self-control and discipline feel satisfying and rewarding.

    Once a prisoner has made sufficient progress processing traumas, safely releasing repression, feeling empowered, developing self-control, developing a sense of self-directed, independent, personal, private and social discipline, and sensing a sufficient proficiency in self and social healing and health, the prisoner then can work with guides, mentors, and perhaps informed professionals to explore exit opportunities, interests, desires, possibilities, options, paths, and transitional possible plans to move forward in the direction of, look forward to, and prepare for until the time comes when it is mutually agreed that it is right such that exit and societal integration can be achieved in a lawful, legal, healthy, safe, secure, prepared, mutually desired, inspired, comfortable, joyful, directed, guided, supported, self-directed, free, sustainable way.

    Anyway, I feel I’ve written plenty for now.

    To summarize, I’d like to see police being kind, public servants who support the community and provide lawful, helpful aid where desired by community members, also communicating resources, attention, care, connection, and least-violent, compassionate, kind, collaborative, safe re-direction, rather than being type-cast in the false-image roles of being supposedly heroic destructive agents of punishment, torture, condemnation, labeling, trauma, and violence trapped in an unexplainable stark contrast between a shallow perception of good versus evil in which the model provided is to destroy the enemy at almost all costs because there is no avenue possible for reform or reconciliation between two sides of the same coin.

    For prison reform, I’d like to see prisons become a safe-haven living shelter situation in which prisoners are given the real-life, basic survival security education that allows them to process their traumas, safely release their repressions, heal, survive, become personally, privately, and socially empowered, and thrive in the local and global world in an enjoyable, contributing, and safe, secure, and sustainable way so that they can be released in a way that they don’t feel dependant on a safe-haven living shelter when they are released, yet they are allowed to retain positive relationships, feelings, and connections they might have developed in that shelter environment.

    For more, questions, comments, etc., please feel free to E-mail me at JennifersEdutainment1@GMail.Com and/or text me at 1 505 570 7017.

    I know this has been a long comment!

    Thanks for your time and consideration.

  3. Regarding policing, the police in some cities are slow to answering calls, in response to the defund slogan, I hear. Wish someone would study that…..

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