However, due to the nature of my work, I have done some prison visits over the past few months. It was an eye opener and I was very grateful to be given the opportunity to see first hand the conditions inside prison and the inmates. It's something that not everyone gets to experience but it's something that I think everyone should experience once in a lifetime so that you will think twice before committing any crime.
I have visited the two biggest prisons in Malaysia which are the Sungai Buloh and the Kajang prisons.
Firstly, the smell was terrible. I'm not being mean but because prisons do not have air cond(for obvious reasons, otherwise it would be a hotel!) and Malaysia is very humid, so the sweat smell of all the inmates are very prominent. It's the first thing you will realise when you enter prison, especially the part where the inmates are gathered.
Most of the inmates are there because of drugs. Drug is a number one problem in Malaysia. Rave concerts are cancelled because of FMFA's OD cases. People either end up in prison or die due to drug abuse. Drugs are addictive and if you have experienced taking drugs since young and you like the effect of it, you can never be able to stop. People go in and out of prisons because they cannot stop. Mind you, some of them are educated people alright! I was shocked when they told me they had engineering degrees, law degrees, diplomas, etc etc but of course some are also dropouts. But to waste your life in prison like that...it's such a waste. Especially when you just wanted to try for the first time, and you were unlucky and got caught or that first time was the beginning of your addiction- either way, your future is ruined because tell me, who would want to employ an ex-prisoner or a drug addict?
Teenagers aged 16,17,18 were there because of drugs as well. Kids these days *shakes head* I feel so bad for their parents! Can you imagine your parents having heard the news that where you were supposed to be in school, but you were caught for drugs instead? Obviously they are still in the prison because the family are so poor that they do not have bail money. You really want to put your family in that kind of situation?
Further, once you're in prison, you will be bullied, you will be taught even worst things, get into gang fights, etc etc. One kid cried to me saying he cannot stand the mental pressure in the juvenile prison anymore. He cried for me to call his mom to provide bail money for his release until his trial comes up. He said kids bully kids on a daily basis, get into fights, and the condition is so bad that even I think I would go mental as well. But, his mom doesn't have that kind of money. She cannot afford to come up with a few thousand ringgit to bail him out. It's just an unfortunate situation.
But that's only drug cases. There were of course murder cases, rape, theft and juveniles being caught for rape and molestation =.= People think they can get away with crimes so easily. Yes, I know some have made a mockery out of our legal system. But, you must also know, for crimes, there are no limitation period meaning to say that if you raped a girl ten years ago, and if she's now brave enough to speak up, you will get into trouble. Someway, somehow even after how many years, you will definitely pay for the crime you did.
I will always feel very sad after my prison visits because the situation is really saddening. People are throwing their lives away like that. Especially teenagers who are inside. Some are however oblivious to their situation. They think it's so 'fun' to go in and out of prison and they never repent. Some have around 8 convictions on their cards and have been imprisoned a couple of times. I ask them why? They just smiled at me. Even they don't have an answer. Some however, have their own family. They have children to take care of and told me that all they want is to see their children and partner. But how? You were supposed to take care of your wife and children but you ended up now leaving them behind to care for themselves.
So, people, think twice, thrice, four times or a hundred times before you even think of taking the first step of committing a crime. The only way to survive in prison is to come out an even bigger criminal. That or you will be mentally scarred for life. Of course, the number one priority is think of your loved ones. Do you want to put them in a heartbreaking situation? When the prisoners are brought into the courtroom for their case mentions, they are allowed to hug their family members. That is a really heartbreaking moment of sadness for me. The amount of tears you see when they hug each other and when they are brought back to prison and the goodbyes are even more heartbreaking.
Don't put yourself or your family through that sh*t. Do good instead. It's more rewarding.