A Review Of Mr. Smith Goes To Prison By Jeff Smith: Chapter Summary

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Learning the significance in regards towards the criminal justice system, and noticing certain aspects and turning points made me realize just how important it is to continue to progress and overcome over every situation we may come across in our life. Both concepts of the books acknowledge the hardships that inmates face and provides many positive examples of how individuals overcame them. As for Mr. Smith Goes to Prison Jeff Smith discussed prison reform and his own personal experience in the prison system he had experienced. Jeff Smith's lifetime of advocacy and civil service make him perfectly suited to write this insightful and damning account of our Criminal Justice System. The first half of the book is about his rise in the Missouri …show more content…

Rather, this is a well-written memoir of a young and privileged white man who had to serve a year in prison (and not a 'country club' prison) for mistakes he made while pursuing public office. He was fortunate to have skills (he could play basketball with anyone), which helped him survive within the mostly black prison population. Additionally, he was 'punished' and put on the most difficult work assignment, where he was able to prove himself to and learn from his fellow laborers. Many of our fellow citizens have served time in prison when alternative sentencing would have served them and us better. Many of them have written books about their experiences but few with the abilities of Mr. Smith. He did not serve much time but he brings multiple talents and experiences to this book: a former public official who had worked on criminal justice issues; a rare ability to connect with and befriend people very different from himself; a PhD scholar with the ability to place these experiences in their broader …show more content…

Mr. Smith's book and advocacy is a good first step, but the effort needs to be broader and more coordinated with other like-thinkers. Smith readily informs us of two serious issues here in America, the educational and the prison system, both full of heartbreaking problems. He also talks about how odious the racial problem is, adding up all these topics shows America is in a world of hurt. I was appalled to learn that Jeff Smith, with his widely varying experience, a PhD and experience teaching, was NOT allowed to tutor inmates in civics, personal finance, budgeting, resume writing and job interviewing during his year in prison! This could have helped men trying to re-enter society to get jobs and manage their money without resorting to crime

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