Saturday, July 05, 2008

Indiana Inmates Translate Books for Blind School Kids

Feel-good stories are much too rare these days because according to our mass media folks we are all doomed to die soon. If the price of oil doesn't make it too expensive for us to get to work, we will probably drown when all of that melting ice caused by global warming reaches us. You know the drill: the economy is the worst since the Great Depression, Iraq is nothing more than another Viet Nam fiasco, George Bush is an idiot, Obama is the reincarnation of John Kennedy (that's a good thing?), Al Gore is a prophet, blah, blah, blah.

So let's counter all of that media-manufactured panic with a little good news. How about this one from the Chicago Tribune that tells of a group of prison inmates who have learned enough Braille to be able to translate school books that will be used at the Indiana School for the Blind. This sounds like one of those win-win ideas that other states might want to think about implementing for themselves.
The men work on small blue typewriters, putting together a series of raised dots that blind children can read later.

Royce, 38, was convicted of rape when he was 18 years old. He has 12 more years before his sentence is up, but he looks forward to using his Braille skills once he is released from prison.

"I can't undo what I did," he said. "But now I have the opportunity to do something positive and good for other people."

The project will provide textbooks and other education materials for students in kindergarten through 12th grade. The project aims to give inmates a chance to learn a skill and help the community -- while providing the school for the blind with cheaper books than those available through Braille companies.

"The savings will be astronomical," said Robert Eutz, a contractor for the school for the blind.
Anything that can save money for the taxpayers who support the prison system, benefit a group of kids who are having to work a little harder than most of us to gain an education, and build the self-respect of some prison inmates has to be a good thing.


  1. Sam, you find the most wonderful book-related stories! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Your last paragraph says it all Sam, what an uplifting tale in a week of unrelieved gloom, doom and crime (and that's just here in the UK!).

  3. Thanks for that lovely story Sam I would add more but I think hershelian has said all I wanted to say!

  4. Thanks, y'all. The story made my day and its good to see that others got a smile or two from it.

  5. That is a nicely uplifting story.

    Don't start me on the manufactured doom and gloom so fashionable nowadays. We have it better than any other time in history and we're so busy pretending it's tough that it's aggravating. Try living under a king with knights trampling your crops and giving them all your goods. Dying of pneumonia. Bad water. Bad sanitation. Spending an entire day just getting through some basic chores.

    Argh. Sorry.

  6. Exactly right, Carrie. Instead of suffering all the problems you listed, we have thousands and thousands of people lining up to buy the latest electronic gadgets and five dollar cups of coffee.

    Yep, times are really tough...worst economy since the Great Depression. Gimme a break, media.


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