I Had 96 Hours Of Court-Mandated Community Service, But The Punishment Didn't Reflect The Actions
Politics and Activism

I Had 96 Hours Of Court-Mandated Community Service, But The Punishment Didn't Reflect The Actions

I received my judgement — and I judged it.


I feel like I can ask nearly any adult woman if they ever had a shoplifting phase when they were younger, and they would answer "yes" in a heartbeat. It's an odd rite of passage for female youth. You steal some lip gloss, then earrings, then a shirt. Your thievery gets more and more advanced — if you can go without getting caught.

Unfortunately, for me, I got caught... twice. This meant that I received a pretty harsh punishment the second time around.

Despite this delinquency, I would never say I fully got along with other delinquents. However, my probation got transferred from La Grande, Oregon to Clackamas, Oregon so I was looped in with Portland Metro hooligans. This was incredibly frustrating.

The people around me were typically there for reckless driving, possession, DUI, vandalism, etc. I didn't fit in with the crowd but I was stuck with them for 96 hours.

12 community service days.

For me, it was an interesting experience to see how the system attempts to keep you in the system. The people I raked leaves with chatted about their illegal endeavors. As we hacked down blackberry bushes, men and women made plans to link up after the eight-hour day. The county, and the way it punishes its people, was cursed by criminals. Relapses were romanticized. The whole energy of the van to and from the community service sites was that of mischief.

I felt like I had no business being roped in with that environment. Whether or not that is personally true for me is questionable. I did an illegal thing, why shouldn't I be connected with criminals?

The bigger question is if this is the best way to recuperate "criminals." Getting them out into the community, getting their hands dirty, and returning service to those they took from is a great thing, but we have to ask if we are perpetuating behaviors. I loved cleaning up city parks, creating pathways at Clackamas Community College, and munching on blackberries as I trimmed bushes, but I felt like we were so unsupervised that it was easy to miss the point. It was so easy to keep carrying on as usual. For most of those that I worked with, their "usual" is criminal behavior.

How can we fix this?

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

I was blessed with thick, full hair up until my late teens. At the time, I cursed my hairiness — this was before full eyebrows became trendy or cool, and were instead a point of bullying many of my fellow full-browed teens can relate to.

Later in my 20s, hormonal stability was something I was thankful for, though a major side effect ended up being hair loss — on my head, lashes, and brows. I now find my filling in my brows on an almost daily basis. As much as I enjoy toying with and testing out different brow-filling products, it'll never be quite the same as being able to have "I woke up like this" full, Gigi Hadid-esque brows.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

May Is Mental Health Awareness Month, A Reminder We Need Even More In Quarantine

You're going through something brand new — that's worth talking about.

May is Mental Health Awareness Month. This isn't new to 2020, but oh man, if we ever needed a reminder about the importance of mental health, now is the time. With different states all over the place in regard to stay-at-home orders, phased reopenings, and a "new normal," we're experiencing conflict, fear, changes, and unknowns that can easily trigger mental struggles we already have or spark feelings we've never had before. Yes, May is always Mental Health Awareness Month, but in quarantine, that need for positive mental health is taken to a whole new level.

Keep Reading... Show less

Everyone is LOVING "Outer Banks," as you've probably heard. And if you haven't caught the hype for the show yet, these articles will definitely give you a taste of what you're missing.

If you already have seen and fallen in love with the teen heartthrob crew, you need to get on board with some of these theories for season two!

Keep Reading... Show less

These 11 Face Masks On Etsy Support Small Businesses While Fighting The Spread Of Coronavirus

We're staying safe as states start lifting lockdown guidelines.

I, like most people who have had the luxury of being able to stay at home during this time, haven't spent much time outdoors at all. But when I do brave the great outdoors for a walk or to get to the grocery store, you won't find me without a mask.

My family and I were lucky enough to have family friends who were sewing some and had extras to give to us, but most of my friends and loved ones outside my immediate family have had to order some (or make a makeshift one out of scarves or bandanas).

Keep Reading... Show less

13 Reasons We're Using Quarantine As The Ultimate Excuse For Online Shopping This Month

The one thing we haven't distanced from is our bank account.

Throughout quarantine, I've been FaceTiming most of my friends in a full turtleneck or the go-to cozy sweater I keep wrapped around the chair in my room. Either way, I always have tea in my hands to keep myself warm — till this past week.

For most of the country who hasn't had the luck of quarantining in 90-degree weather on their family's lake house or with a backyard pool, things began to change this month. Our favorite shows came out with summer seasons, the sun came out, and we started spending more time outside.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

I Sat Down (Virtually) With Morgan Wooten To Talk About Coronavirus's Impact On The Wellness Industry

Just because coronavirus has greatly impacted the wellness industry doesn't mean wellness stops.

Morgan Wooten

If you're anything like me, your weekly fitness classes are a huge part of your routine. They keep me fit, healthy, and sane. Honestly, these classes help my mental health stay in tip-top shape just as much as they help my physical health.

Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, gyms and fitness studios are facing temporary closure. Yes, this means my personal routine is thrown a curveball, but this also means the wellness industry is one of many that is looking at unemployment and hardship. Do I miss my Monday spin class? Of course. But do the wellness professionals whose worlds were flipped upside down have a lot more to overcome than a slight change of routine? Absolutely. Thankfully, if anyone can prove the ultimate flexibility, it's the wellness industry.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments