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This is a long road I have been on with Jamie since we met at the end of 2005. A month later he was picked up with friends and sentenced for a crime he was there for, but didn’t commit. He never found out what happened to his friends but he knew the one with the gun, who had joked about robbing the club they were going to had been in prison before, so he was guilty by association. He thought he was joking. Jamie learned the importance of paying attention to the friends you keep.
He was a young man who turned 22 at the same time, in January 2006. What he has been through at the hands of the guards, the staff, and also some other inmates is something you don’t want to go through. It was hard reading about it knowing there was nothing I could do to help him – except be there for him. Family pretty much disappeared. I have struggled to provide him with basic necessities we take for granted. Now he has “only” 4 1/2 years to go before he is released. Now it is going to take more than an occasional $20 of extra food each month and money to buy hygiene, books and magazines and pay for the lousy medical care he gets. He wants so much to survive and be a father to the son he has never been allowed to touch because a piece of plexi-glass separates them.
How will he live? He doesn’t know how to open up a bank account or sign a lease agreement if someone takes a chance and rents to a convicted x-felon. That can be difficult to find. There is so much he doesn’t know that he will be expected to know. How can an almost 40 year old man not know what he should have learned 20 years before? Getting out of prison after that many years is similar to coming home from war with PTSD and have to assimilate into society.
Jamie has epilepsy and needs medical care to keep his seizures in check. The prison medical unit has denied him his medication many times for days at a time and is often left laying, sometimes on the floor after a seizure, or he wakes to find himself in cuffs and leg shackles ( for the guard’s protection, of course). He sometimes seizes twice and to be shackled could mean breaking bones.
I have been working to get him help legally and to stop them from changing his records to indicate he was adequately cared for. I am not going to let him be a statistic. I’m sure, if you have a loved one in prison you have also been fearful of the things the prison staff can be authorized to do.
This costs money I do not have. Many of you have followed this blog for the four years I’ve been writing it. I have gotten many messages of encouragement to pass on to him. He is a kindhearted person who appreciates every kind word he has received. It is why I am writing the book “Inside The forbidden Outside” so he will have money and a chance to get started when he gets released. It will be a hard road. There will be a sequel to this book which will be what happens as he starts the process of being released and starting again.
This is why I decided to do something that could make money to help him. I am sincerely hoping you will help, too. Jamie wrote to me and said, “Are you sure? I don’t think many people would want a T-shirt with my face on it.” I told him, “You don’t know how many people know who you are, but they are all over the world!”
Sharing this post will also help. If this works I will branch out to more colors. The success of the book ( when I get done writing and recording the music and videos! ) depends on those of you who care about the great number of people who were railroaded into prison by having plea deals forced on them even if they are innocent. I have to do everything I can to help him.
Yellow cotton 14″ x17″
Adult XX light weight cotton
T-Shirt adult Sm
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I hope to add more colors and styles as well as other items to help raise much needed funds.
I want to thank everyone for reading and sharing posts and chapters along with music and videos I record. It has been quite a journey. Thank you for helping me support Jamie, even if that help is just coming here and reading. The prison system needs to change. Hopefully with this book and the lecturing I plan on doing afterward will help change a piece of it.