From Life in Prison, to Running for Mayor of New York
Education is powerful. It has the ability to right a wrong. It can shed light in an area where there is darkness and it has the power to change the future. At iteach, we believe in education and making the world a better place through knowledge.
This month is Black History Month and we want to put the spotlight on Isaac Wright Jr. If you have been watching the TV Drama “For Life” you may be familiar with Wright’s story. However, if you aren’t, it is fascinating. Wright was born in 1962. In 1989 he was arrested on drug charges and eventually sentenced to life in prison plus 70 years. However, today, he is out of jail and running for mayor of New York in the 2021 election. According to Wikipedia, “In December 2020, Wright announced that he would run for mayor of New York City as a Democrat. He said that criminal justice and police reform would be the centerpieces of his campaign, but that he would also focus on taxes, school desegregation, homelessness, and transit issues.”
How did that happen? Persistence and Education. While incarcerated, Wright studied law and became a paralegal to represent himself and other inmates who were wrongfully convicted. After his case was overturned, Wright continued his education.
Wright is currently an attorney for the law firm of Hunt, Hamlin and Ridley. According to his bio page on their website:
Isaac Wright Jr. was wrongfully convicted on drug charges in New Jersey and sentenced to life in prison in 1991 under New Jersey’s drug kingpin laws. While incarcerated, he worked as a paralegal while in prison and helped to overturn the wrongful convictions of twenty of his fellow inmates, before finally proving his own innocence.
After being released from prison he graduated college at Thomas Edison State University in Trenton and eventually law school at St. Thomas University School of Law in Miami. He graduated in 2007 and passed the bar in 2008. After a nine year investigation into his character the New Jersey Bar Association’s Committee approved his application.
To learn more about Wright’s amazing story, watch the video below.
“Education is Freedom.” – Paulo Freire
According to Wikipidea “Paulo Reglus Neves Freire(1921–1997) was a Brazilian educator and philosopher who was a leading advocate of critical pedagogy. He is best known for his influential work Pedagogy of the Oppressed, which is generally considered one of the foundational texts of the critical pedagogy movement.”
Freire grew up poor and as he got older he realized that hunger and poverty were barriers to learning and education. He also realized the power of education to free the oppressed.
When we look at our world we view it through our own personal lens. Our set of experiences, our family, and our culture all impact our world view. However, when we are open to new ideas and we keep educating ourselves, it can have a profound impact on our lives and others. Not learning, not continually growing can create a mental barrier, a cage even, of our own making. What we may believe, might actually be the very thing that is keeping us from getting what we want.
In the video below, the concept of being open-minded is explained. What does this have to do with education and freedom? Being open-minded in it’s simplest form is creating a safe space where knowledge and information can be freely shared and everyone can form conclusions on the aggregate of data currently on hand. It is in the continuing of learning that real progress is made in the world.
Become a Teacher. Change Lives.
If you are passionate about impacting the world around you there are few places where you can influence the future as much as a teacher. Teachers have the ability to build students up and set them on a positive course that can have a ripple effect for future generations.
If you are interested in becoming a teacher, check out our online teacher certification program and you could be teaching in a matter of weeks.