Friday March 17, 2017

Why is Criminal Justice Reform Important to Me?

By Tim Fasano, '17

“Our society seems to prefer punishment to rehabilitation and retribution to restoration thereby indicating a failure to recognize prisoners as human beings.”

“Indicating a failure to recognize prisoners as human beings.” These words from a USCCB document on crime and criminal justice speak to my passion for this topic. It is my understanding of the beauty of the human person and the inherent beauty given to them by God which has often left me in awe when this basic truth is disregarded in our world and our country, particularly in the approach we have to criminal justice. I recognize the great complexity of the issue and the vastness of other factors contributing to its proliferation, such as “extreme poverty, discrimination, and racism. ” I believe, therefore, that learning about, understanding, and experiencing such injustices and how they hurt numerous others, will teach me how to better understand and relate to the dignity of others. I believe St. Teresa of Calcutta sums it up well: “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.”

Because of these passions and desires, I have sought to make such issues better know. One way in which I have done so is by leading Campus Ministry’s Criminal Justice Plunge, which took place last semester and will be occurring again on March 25th. I see this as an opportunity to share with others what I myself have come to know, and to walk with them towards justice and peace.

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