We will have a new blog series for the next several weeks, courtesy of two new WCCC interns, Miranda and Kasi. Learn about WCCC and restorative justice along with Miranda and Kasi as they intern with board member Samantha Fahey and volunteer on cases in Stillwater.
This week was my first official week as an intern with Washington County Community Circles and it has been an eye opening experience. It wasn't just attending circle on Thursday night, which I will get into later, it was beginning actual research on both restorative justice and circle that has changed my view on a lot of different aspects of the American justice system. There are a lot of ways that we as a society can change it but as an individual, it begins with learning and understanding how exactly I can change the way the justice system “punishes" offenders. Before finding this internship, I did not know what restorative justice was exactly. I had a small inkling as to what it was because of my faculty advisor who is very interested in and is an advocate for restorative justice. The more I research the more I grow in excitement for what my future may look like in regards to reforming the criminal justice system.
Now going back to the circle I attended on Thursday evening, while it may have been what others would call “disappointing,” I call enlightening. The circle that was held wasn't an ‘official’ circle but it was still an experience that I will never forget. We spoke about the shooting that happened in Florida and how that made us feel as not only a person in this country but as a country as a whole. We spoke about compassion as the value this week and each of us that were there spoke of our disappointment and disgust in the fact that school shootings are so normal in this country. We then went on to theorize on reasons why things like this keep happening. While we never came to a full answer we can probably all agree that it has something to do with the lack of guidance and direction from parents toward their children.
Kids are left to their own devices in most cases, never really knowing what is right and what it wrong. But if we can figure out why this keeps occurring and then fix it, maybe our country has a real future. To conclude, I m looking forward to the next 12 weeks as an intern with Washington County Community Circles. See you next week! ~ Kasi