Drug Related Felonies Will Not Deter Me From Living MY Dream
(Nashville, Tn. 37217)
I just served 6 years on a 20 year sentence. I paroled out of prison last May as a rehabilitated man. I don't drink, smoke, use or sell drugs. I have been clean for over 6 years. During my time in prison I bettered myself by entering and fully participating in 24 months straight therapeutic community, higher education, and faith in God. In case you've never heard of therapeutic community I will shed some light on the program in general. Therapeutic community is a highly structured and intense 3-phase and usually 9 month or longer drug rehabilitation program designed to use cognitive thinking and self realization to treat drug abuse and criminal thinking within a closed and highly structured community.
The TC program that I participated in is called Residential Drug Abuse Treatment Program or "RDAP". This Intense program was started by the Bureau of Prisons over 20 years ago, but has been constantly adapting and evolving to newer treatments and strategies. The success of the program speaks for itself as recidivism rates for persons completing the program are considerably lower... nearly 60% over a three year period vs a person without therapeutic community treatment. That means that the person without the TC treatment is 60% more likely to re-offend.
I also became a Christian in prison...yeah, I know...many incarcerated people find religion for a short time on the inside for whatever reasons, and often times it is only until they get out. I am not going to tell you that I am a preacher or a saint, but I will tell you that I am a very spiritual man...true faith is like a suit of armor to a believer...it protects you from criticism by non-believers and godless men. I also bettered myself by earning a certification as a paralegal.
All of my accomplishments on the inside I did on my own through sacrifice and dedication and commitment to changing myself. Do I believe a convicted felon can't drive a truck? Am I wasting my time at TTC by taking the CDL Truck Driver course? If I truly believed the answer was yes to either one of these questions I would be as negative and pessimistic as many of the guys who wrote the articles above. I have ambition, determination, and faith and that will guide me and suffice me until I find a job.