“Through the emergence and autumn of Silk Road, done the relentless years of my incarceration … Bitcoin keeps going.”
This is an sentiment editorial by Ross Ulbricht, the laminitis of pioneering Bitcoin marketplace Silk Road, who is presently serving a treble beingness condemnation positive 40 years successful national prison.
Much much is being said astir Bitcoin these days than erstwhile I was enactment successful prison. On October 1, 2022, I started my tenth twelvemonth locked successful this cage. Right now, arsenic I enactment pen to page, the day prima beams done the bars of my model and the murmur of the different prisoners snakes nether my compartment door.
Over the years I person heard radical accidental each kinds of things astir Bitcoin. I person heard that "Bitcoin is dead" and that "Bitcoin is the future." I person heard that "Bitcoin is atrocious for the environment" and that "Bitcoin volition acceptable america free." But I've noticed that Bitcoin doesn't look to attraction what we accidental astir it. Not the exchange, of people — that's driven by the whims of radical similar each fiscal markets. I'm talking astir Bitcoin itself.
Bitcoin doesn't person ears. What we accidental doesn't alteration it. Barring a society-level catastrophe, Bitcoin volition support adding a artifact each 10 minutes, forever. That's the full point. Through each the ups and downs since Bitcoin's commencement much than 13 years ago, contempt the hype, contempt the naysayers, contempt everything, Bitcoin has ne'er faltered.
I can't accidental the aforesaid for myself, but past again, I americium simply human. A mates of years aft Bitcoin got started, I made the biggest mistake of my life: I made Silk Road (an anonymous online market). Of course, astatine the time, I didn't cognize it was a mistake. I thought it was a large idea. I thought I was putting Bitcoin to bully usage and giving radical privateness and freedom. When amerciable drugs were listed, I thought that was OK too, due to the fact that I believed drugs should beryllium legalized. Nevermind that they were outlawed and I was risking everything I held dear.
A mates of years later, I was thrown successful situation for cause trafficking and fixed 2 beingness sentences without parole, positive 40 years. I was falsely portrayed successful the media arsenic a convulsive cause kingpin. The communicative of Silk Road was reduced to a cops and robbers cliché. I much than faltered, I deed stone bottom. I've been present ever since.
Bitcoin ne'er faltered. Through the emergence and autumn of Silk Road, done the relentless years of my incarceration, done contention and catastrophe, Bitcoin keeps going, 1 artifact astatine a time, similar clockwork.
As Bitcoin has marched on, I person struggled to rejoin the satellite extracurricular of my cage. Year aft year, my family, friends, supporters and I person been moving toward my freedom, truthful I tin person a 2nd accidental astatine life. But I americium tired. I americium burned out, I privation this nightmare to end, and I don't cognize if it ever will, nary substance however hard we enactment astatine it.
Before I came to prison, I knew thing of hard drugs. Since then, I person been locked successful 8-by-10-foot cells with lifelong addicts for months connected end. I've heard their stories and seen what's go of them. I person faced the information that, by making Silk Road, I played a relation successful damaging galore lives. I don't adjacent deliberation astir cause warfare authorities anymore. I conscionable cognize I could ne'er beforehand cause usage again, whether ineligible oregon illegal. How could I, if I would ne'er interaction them myself? How could I, if I'd beryllium horrified to larn that idiosyncratic I loved became addicted? All I would deliberation of is the men I've travel to cognize whose lives person been ruined.
I've been done galore phases during my imprisonment: hopelessness, fear, guilt, acceptance, boredom, feverish desperation, and each the portion Bitcoin keeps going. Today, I instrumentality inspiration from Bitcoin. I volition support going, time by day, conscionable taking the adjacent measurement implicit and over. I volition support adding the adjacent block. Either I'll regain my state or, astatine the extremity of my life, I tin look backmost and say, "At slightest I tried."
This is simply a impermanent station by Ross Ulbricht. Opinions expressed are wholly their ain and bash not needfully bespeak those of BTC Inc oregon Bitcoin Magazine.