Friday, December 18, 2009
Whenever I drive through northern Georgia along the I-75 corridor, I’m always impressed by how pristine the sides of the road are. No bags, beer cans, or paper litter the sides of the road. I could it explain it by saying that in small town Georgia people take pride and ownership of their surroundings. And that may be true, but there are plenty of non-Northern Georgians traveling the interstate. Today I discovered the reason the roads are so clean—prison work detail. Twice today I saw signs announcing Prison Work Detail. Sure enough, prisoners in orange vests were picking up garbage. I can imagine the argument going something like this: “We’re not paying to feed and house these prisoners without them doing something to help pay back the state.” Makes sense to me. After all, I came from the state that put Martha Stewart in jail. The rumor is that her punishment included teaching other prisoners napkin-folding. Personally, I think they should have hit her with a heavy fine and made her pay restitution (though for insider trading I’m not sure who should get the money). On the other hand, maybe picking up some trash isn’t such a bad idea...Of course, I’m the woman who calls her children together for housework by yelling, “Time for slave labor”, so maybe I’m not the best person to make such decisions.