Happy Monday everyone!
I wore this dress a few months ago and wanted to re-style it for autumn by adding a blazer and a statement necklace.
Last week, I attended a poetry charity event where my mentee was performing. She did such an amazing job! I’ll share one of her poems later this week. The event was powerful and moving. I sat there and was completely enveloped by the words of each performance. The poems touched on issues of abandonment, abuse, forgiveness, hope, and much more. You can tell by listening that the authors are fighters, determined to overcome obstacles. Their strength and spirit moved the room. The poems flowed like music and lasted for about an hour. At the very end, each performer stood up and said… Jon, 25 to life. Michael, 25 to life. Marina, 25 to life. There were about 5 more names along with their prison sentencing. I bursted into tears and quietly sobbed in my seat. I walked into this event knowing that these poems were written by youths behind bars and performed by actors, but didn’t know how much their words would impact me. Realizing that some of these youths will never get a second chance or see life outside prison broke my heart.
For the last three years, I’ve worked with incarcerated youths. I was a volunteer teacher at the San Francisco Juvenile Detention Center, and currently a mentor at InsideOut Writers. I see so much strength, so much will to live and be a positive contributing member of society in these youths. Unfortunately, life circumstances deterred their dreams. Some were born in prison, surrounded by violence, raised on the streets, broken down by abuse, and introduced to a life of crime at a very young age. I do not condone their actions that got them incarcerated, however I am concerned about our juvenile justice system. Policies such as Zero Tolerance, established in the mid-90’s, inflated the numbers of youth crimes, and the lack of strong educational programs in urban areas make it difficult to help these youths. The juvenile justice system is very complex and I do not think there are simple solutions to fix the problems. With that said, I do not believe that jail or prison will reduce the recidivism rates either.
I wish you were there. I wish you heard the poems. They were powerful, articulate, creative, and personal.
As always, thank you so much for reading and for giving me the opportunity to talk not only about fashion but also other social issues.
:: Outfit ::
Top :: Rebecca Minkoff blazer (again here)
Dress :: Forever 21 (again here) (similar here)
Shoes :: Christian Louboutin (similar here)
Bag :: Proenza Schouler
Accessories :: Tory Burch necklace, nude belt (similar here), Estelle Dévé bracelet,
Deborah Lippmann ‘It’s raining men’ polish
*names listed are not real to protect the identity of the youths