Former Missouri state senator Jeff Smith wrote an editorial for the Chicago Tribune on Thursday. He just spent a year in prison after pleading guilty for two federal election law violations committed during his 2004 campaign for Congress.
The editorial is a letter to former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich about how to survive your time in prison. Blagojevich is spending 14 years in prison starting today. He is doing time for attempting to sell president Barack Obama’s former US senate seat.
Here are Jeff Smith’s tips for making the best of prison:
- God gave you two ears, two eyes and one mouth — use them in proportion.
- Embrace your background, but don’t try to be a politician.
- Get in the best shape of your life.
- Correspond with anyone who writes you.
- Forgive your enemies.
- Don’t complain about how bad your prison job is, and don’t brag about how good it is.
- Learn something new.
- Use your unique knowledge and skills to help other inmates.
- Don’t snitch, under any circumstances.
- Don’t break prison rules.
- Don’t look for trouble.
- Don’t eat the Snickers.