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"Sucessful" Faith-Based Initiative


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What produces tolerance' date=' freedom, right of choice, etc, is dedicated, vigilant, socratic, critical analysis. On a regular basis.



Very hard to be critical of God. That's a big difference between religion and secular viewpoints.


By the way, 75 out of 177 (~40%)ex-inmates obtaining jobs sounds pretty good. I wonder what the "normal" rate is?


I would think job training would be better. They lose certain rights when imprisioned, so if they are made to attend a program, I see no problem. Probably would be a waste of money if they aren't dedicated though.

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Becoming religious seems to be the in thing with heavy weight boxers in prison.

But I think Mr Bush would not like the religion they choose.


Can you pick another religion or is a limited prison type menu?


I like bush, he reminds me of a baby monkey.

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I kinda wondered about that god-and-inmates business. There's something funky about that that I can't quite put my finger on. Maybe it's just the general impression that inmates probably don't need a whole lot of help finding god -- they seem to be pretty good at doing that on their own, even if it's only to impress the parole board. Are the christians there to give them some kind of litmus test?


I dunno, maybe it's just the cynic in me, but there's some kind of correlation there that rings some kind of warning bell for me. For which side it's ringing, I'm not sure.

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Spokesman on behalf of pragmatists:


We don’t care if Timmy thinks the stars are bullet holes in a big black curtain.

as long as it stops the little bugger from jacking our car.


Not saying the end justifies the means,

but we do like results at some point.



Prisoners don’t have all the rights of free people,

so it's not appropriate to consider them as such.

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I dunno, maybe it's just the cynic in me, but there's some kind of correlation there that rings some kind of warning bell for me. For which side it's ringing, I'm not sure.


you might be thinking the same thing as me. Whats the correlation that is ringing the warning bell for you?

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I think the program is only based upon evangelical Christianity.


I cant keep track of all the religious sub categories these days.

I thought the US was mostly Protestant?


What is the characteristic of the Evangelical one again?


( ps the name sounds good, kind of like Evil-Kaneevel)

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I don't know, that's the problem. I just think it oddly coincidental that prison inmates so frequently convert to christianity, and that this is one of the areas where faith-based initiatives have focused.


Prison conversions are not at all uncommon even before Charles Colson-inspired evangelical programs. I attribute it to a couple of things:


1) Prisoners are scamming because scamming is what so many of them do well. If they can convince a parole board that Jesus has turned their lives around they have a better chance of parole.


2) The conversions are "sincere." How many reading this have vowed to quit smoking or go on a diet yet failed to reach their goal? It is human nature to want to be better and it is human nature to find a belief that can be referenced in troubled times and for help with decision making.


Christianity is especially useful for either of these prisoner goals because it is based upon the idea of total redemption. In other words, no matter what one does, one can be forgiven and achieve grace. It's really a very cool, appealing idea.


I once tried to explain this in a forum that was peopled mostly by Asians with Buddhist reincarnation-type beliefs. Some of them were absolutely outraged. It seemed dreadful to them that a murderer could be forgiven and redeemed and go to Heaven. To them, Jesus had not done a good thing but a very bad thing by offering such a reward for even the truly contrite believers. To them the murderer should have had to come back in another life and suffer a just Karma.

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A little off topic, but here is an ugly side to certain types of "Christianity:" An acquaintance who thinks of herself as very devout said that she thought that the tsunami was God's judgment on the nations that suffered it because they were not Christian. "God was trying to send them a message. Sometimes, God just loses his temper."


Sickening. I was speechless.


This kind of thinking could also result in certain abuses connected with faith-based initiatives. I, for one, do not think they should be allowed to side-step antidiscrimination laws in hiring.

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The thing I find odd is how some people are well behaved in order to go to heaven.


that seems wrong to me.


You don’t do the right thing for the reward.

you do the right thing because it is the right thing.

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