“The worst thing about prison is accepting it … You still have this sense of hope that: ‘Hey, [being in prison] is a dream; this is not real. There is no way that I am in prison right now,'” said Denny Chow. He remembers coming to terms with his inmate status after being sent to prison for robbery at age 23.
In just the last month or so, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) joined a growing list of national organizations calling for an end to the solitary confinement of young people in this country.
Larry White is an old man of 81 now, but he remembers growing up in Bedford-Stuyvesant before it was known as the hot gentrifying neighborhood in Brooklyn. As a kid, while other children were playing basketball he used to stick up the A&P supermarkets in his area.
When I knew there was a chance that I could reach out to you young men and women in the Modesto Juvenile Hall, I was ready for the opportunity. You see, back in 1998 and ’99 from age 16 to 17, I was in the max unit, and in 1999 I spent some time in the boys’ unit too.