A new book by author Cornelius Lee Barker titled Why Have You Forsaken Me? has been released online and into retail book outlets across the country this week. The book is billed as an informative piece about what Barker labels a “key player [in the American justice system] that too often goes unnoticed: the correctional officer.”
According to Barker, the justice system in the United States consists of a number of key players who take on a variety of roles such as police and detectives who make arrests and solve crimes, attorneys who provide legal counsel and representation to individuals accused of crimes, and judges who make decisions about those individuals’ innocence or guilt.
The correctional officer is every bit as important a cog in that wheel, says Barker, but unfortunately doesn’t get even a fraction of the recognition.
Barker’s book goes into great detail about several accounts given to him about the struggles, responsibilities, highs and lows of the nation’s correctional officers which he says “are, contrary to what many people believe, far more than just babysitters of the accused.” He says he wrote the book because he felt the world needed to become aware and develop a deeper understanding of just how critical these individuals are to not only the justice system in America but to the very fabric of society and to the safety thereof.
The book also attempts to paint a more realistic picture of the nation’s correctional officers than most people are accustomed to seeing. Unbeknownst to most, these officers are responsible for up to 70 accused men and women for as long as 24 hours at a time. The stress and pressure that they are under is unfathomable to most people and according to Barker, the goal of the book was to paint a clear picture of what these officers are – real people.