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A Place to Stand

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A Place to Stand

In life many people go about wondering, is there something better out there? Whether it’s taking some necessary steps to grow up, becoming a better person inside and out, or simply pushing themselves education wise, those people who wonder usually after a period of hardships, to eventually succeed in what they are looking to succeed in. When it came to Jimmy Santiago Baca in his memoir “A Place to Stand” he had to take a good look at his life, and lifestyle, convince himself that he can do better, to eventually overcome a lot of his in his life so that he could accomplish his main goal of overcoming illiteracy.

Jimmy Santiago Baca, after growing up the youngest of three children, watching his drunken and womanizing father destroy the marriage he had with his mother, and landing a new home with his grandparents at the age of two. Baca became immune to certain downfalls. These downfalls had in a way started a domino effect in Baca’s life. After the sudden lost of his grandfather Baca and his brother was sent off to an orphanage, while his sister stayed home to help care for her grandmother. At the orphanage Baca gained a bad reputation by constantly trying to run away which landed him in a detention center for boys. By the age 15 he was living on his own, working odd jobs, and getting in and out of the use of drugs and alcohol. This whole new lifestyle was hard for young Baca. If only he knew what this new lifestyle would have him end up. By age twenty one Baca, began dealing heroin for Mexican smugglers, and was indirectly involved in a drug sale to an undercover officer. During this bust, one of Baca’s fellow drug dealers shot and wounded an FBI agent, and in 1973 Baca was sentenced to five years without parole in a maximum-security prison in Arizona. This is these type of stories end or, or usually lead to an even sadder story. But when it comes to Baca he took these hardships and turned them into something to grow off of, only to discover gift that he previously could only imagine.

After serving six years in jail, four years in isolation, Baca held on to his sanity by taking mental trips back to his past, mainly of his life

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