Darrell Cannon-“You can be anything you wanna be”

The presentation of Darrell Cannon was astonishing. Sitting there and listening to him, it was almost unimaginable to most of us how a person can go through so much and still remain sane. But not only he persevered though days of unthinkable torture (cattle-rods, fake shotgun shots, humiliation) and nine years of solitude in Tamms, he is stronger now than he was before, as his rage and anger at what was done to him push  him forward.

One has to admire the  courage of all victims that are willing to relive the pain of their suffering, only so they can teach others and raise awareness about the realities they lived through. What struck me most about Mr. Cannon, was his manners (which he explained by the strong family ties and ethic that he was raised with). Having been in Tamms for 9 years for a crime he was tortured to confessed to, it is striking that he managed to raise above those that were trying tirelessly to bring him down and not for once utter an ugly jargon word at an officer.

His presentation made me wonder about a lot of things though…

For one, he has never been on welfare and as he said as long he can work, he never will be. This is surprising and inspiring, especially after he spoke about, how prison does not teach you how to survive in the outer world where you have to provide your own meals. Thus, I thought about how something in the system is lacking then. We need to teach work skills, money budgeting and overall survival kit, before we can even begin to hope that those released from prison after they have served their time would not return there after their first “failure” in the real world.

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