Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Wilbert Rideau

Few subjects are as complicated, emotional as crime and punishment (someone should write a book on that). Wilbert Rideau's story challenges notions of justice, rehabilitation and community service from every side. Check out Teri Gross' interview of Rideau and an excerpt from his memoir, In The Place Of Justice, here on NPR's Fresh Air.


January 1972

It's late, and raining. The buildings before me have been abandoned. Life has drained from the traffic arteries below. The wet pavement of empty Lake Charles streets and parking lots doubles the glare of street lamps and neon signs, intensifying the darkness.

It's quiet. Profoundly so. Rain whispers against the open window a few feet away. The only other thing you can hear is your own heart, thumping. I've known men who could not stand this silence, but I've grown accustomed to it. I scratch a fingernail on one of the bars, to reassure myself I haven't gone deaf. I've stood here many nights staring out my second- floor window at the same scene below, week after week, month after month, year after year . . . after year. Except for the rain, it never changes.

Rideau was also featured on CBS Sunday Morning. That segment can be found here.

No comments:

Post a Comment