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A single white flower blooms with concrete in the background
Photo by sickk vibes on Unsplash

If you transform the broken,
It will ameliorate our plight,
Then heal humanity.

If you build us up,
It will improve our circumstances,
Then stop recidivism.

If you change social stigma,
It will increase our chances,
Then decrease incarceration.

If you identify the problem,
It will establish new practices,
Then dignify our population.

If you create awareness,
It will stop mistreatment,
Then overcome adversity.

If you recognize affliction,
It will redefine survival,
Then empower people.

If you challenge assumptions,
It will erase judgment,
Then stabilize a culture.

If you protect the innocent,
It will cease to condemn,
Then revamp a system.

If you research what works,
It will champion a movement,
Then design our destiny.

If you shift public opinion,
It will secure diverse viewpoints,
Then revolutionize the future.

If you ignore the action call,
It will catalyze the inevitable fall,
Then not for us but
For all.

Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.

Candice Baughman is a writer incarcerated in Washington.