The Battle is Within, by Brandon C. L. Hope

Greetings to the readers, my name is Brandon C.L. Hope. I am 19 years of age. I am incarcerated at Lawrenceville Correctional Facility in Virginia. I have been incarcerated since the age of 14. Through the process that the judicial system has put me through, I have become enlightened to many beautiful things of this country that we live in, but I have also been enlightened to many detrimental issues.

Right now, I would like to speak to the topic of “What’s free?”

Despite my obvious lack of freedom, and despite all the complaints that could be brought to society’s attention, that is not the aspect of free that I would like to indulge in at this particular time.

The lack of freedom that I would like to bring attention to, is that of not the oppressed, but that of the oppressor. Yes, the oppressed obviously lack freedom, but freedom is not just physical. There is also a mental and spiritual aspect to freedom. Although we, the oppressed, often view the oppressors as powerful and free, that is not truth at all. The truth is that the mindset of oppression has enslaved humanity.

Often times, the oppressor only oppresses because of demons and struggles they battle within their personal life. So, the simple fact is, that the battle for freedom is not the oppressed against the oppressor, nor the oppressor against the oppressed… the battle is within. The fight is humanity against physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional slavery. Unity is key.

Thank you for your time…

– Brandon C. L. Hope, From Hampton, VA

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