Letter: Give inmates hardy, unconditional congratulations for graduation

Published: Sunday, July 1 2012 12:00 a.m. MDT

The recent article "Inmates Stick it Out to Earn High School Diplomas" (June 14) put a positive light on the 340 Utah State prison inmates for graduating with their high school diplomas. The article's accompanying photo showed the men lined up wearing blue graduation gowns and mortarboard tasseled caps giving readers an upbeat school-like image of their accomplishments under adverse circumstances.

But regrettably, one graduate mentioned by name, a 76-year-old inmate, had his decades-old specific and especially humiliating charges mentioned. This was certainly hurtful to him, his wife, family and friends.

As a retired LDS Church seminary teacher, I have taught high school aged youth the value of such principles as repentance, forgiveness and the chance we all need from time to time to be recognized for having achieved a change of heart. My teaching past prompts me to grade the article's 90 percent positive side with an "A" and the 10 percent negative side with an "F." Surely our community joins the Deseret News in offering all 340 of these graduates a hardy, unconditional congratulations for their choosing to achieve such progress.

David R. Scott

Sandy

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