Sunday, January 25, 2015

Solitary Confinement

I recently read an article on solitary confinement here on Mother Jones. The article, in part, discussed movements to ban solitary confinement for juveniles.

Here are my thoughts:

Solitary confinement is incongruous with the notion of prison as rehabilitation. Prison is punishment enough without this exercise in stripping people of their humanity. This needs to stop, not just for juveniles, but for all people. It is a hazard for prisons and it is a hazard to normal society when these individuals are ultimately released.

One potential solution would be to have the equivalent of solitary, but in a place where prisoners can see and communicate with one another. I guess it wouldn't be solitary if people can see and communicate with others - but what is needed is a way for prisoners to be incarcerated in a way that balances the need for the safety of prison officials and the general prison population and the need for us as a society to respect the dignity and mental health of disruptive and/or disobedient prisoners.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

I'm gonna be a coder

After much trial and error and heartache, I finally got django installed on my machine.

Things are weird with django installation when you're running windows - and no one tells you that. After running into a wall every day for the past 4 days when trying to install it on my PC, I finally asked myself 
"what if it has something to do with the fact that i'm using windows?"
...And sure enough, there are special install instructions for windows users on the djangoproject website - and those special install instructions are nowhere to be found on the main install page.

I'm probably going to sign up for code academy/treehouse or something similar after I work my way through the introductory "welcome to django" projects they've set up for new users to learn the ropes.
This whole "learning to code" thing is my new year's resolution.

I don't "do" resolutions, but because the new year represents a new season in my life, i'm going to make my goals into "resolutions" for 2015.
Why coding? Why not?
I've missed lots of opportunities in life to develop my coding skills (not the least of which was being a student at MIT) - but i'm not going to let missed opportunities get me down. Here's to a new year, a new season and to new goals.

Check out a blog I wrote on resolutions over here.