Inside The Forbidden Outside – The Hardest Lesson to Learn

This chapter is broken into two segments to make it easier to read in one sitting.  The first part is my words, and part two are letters from Jamie.  Part two was already published as the chapter, “I’ll Love You Always, Daddy”  It was expanded because of other letters I found.

INSIDE THE FORBIDDEN OUTSIDE     by Sonni Quick  COPYRIGHT 2016

See the SoundCloud link below to go to the rest of the music.  As with all web based media, all stats, likes and shares helps to spread the word as I try to get this off the ground.  it would be appreciated more than you know.

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THE HARDEST LESSON TO LEARN

       The hardest lesson to learn in life is the one where you realize, no matter what you do, there is nothing you can do to change it. You can’t make it better on the outside, because you can no longer control it. But you can learn to pay attention to things you do now, because there are effects to every cause we make, good and bad. These causes send our life in directions we often later regret. We can’t go back and do things over, but we can do other things that effect our future in a better way.
        Through the book there are times when both Jamie and I speak because our stories became intertwined during these years. At the moment I am reading through hundreds of letters Jamie has written to me over these years. He has, in reality, grown up while being locked up. He has been locked up since before he turned sixteen, except for a brief period when he met my daughter after he was released from juvenile detention and they now have a son. Today, in 2016, he is thirty three. That is a lot of life to lose, and unless there are things learned that will make the rest of his life better than it would have been had he not gone in, then that is a high price to pay for wisdom.      

       In a way, I have watched him grow and mature from a boy into a man. He had to decide which lessons he needed to learn so he would be able to figure things out for himself. That hasn’t been an easy road.  There is only so much you can understand unless you were taught. We learn wisdom by our life experiences. What do you do when you don’t have the practical experiences needed to acquire wisdom? What happens when the things you do learn are not the right things for life on the outside?

       Because he really needed one, I became mom, although he is much more than that to me. His biological mother seldom made a step into his world and he was left with no support, emotionally or financially.  One of my worries was how does he not become institutionalized? I have seen the effects of that with other people who were not able to adjust when they got out. Where does he direct the anger he has over the way people have treated him? Anger is one way to cover up pain, and that pain, at times, becomes unbearable, especially when it involves his son.
        Because Jamie is in prison, does that make him a bad person? Should one of his consequences be people looking at him through the lens of “once a loser, always a loser?” Many people on the outside have only one view, and that is to look at convicts as always being criminals. It’s hard to pay the complete price and not be judged as a loser. There is no mid ground. They can never finish paying their dues. People may say inmates deserve a second chance, but only as long as they do not live near them and not in their neighborhood. Inmates are judged harshly by non perfect people who don’t think of the things they might have done in their own past, but didn’t get caught. Haven’t we all done things we aren’t proud of, or did something that was at least on the edge of being against the law? Haven’t we all been blamed for something we didn’t do, yet no one believed us?
        I often read comments like this about black people that were left at the end of articles. Many of these people are white and consider black people as having crime in their genes along with not being overly bright. A stigma is attached to being black. White privilege is usually dripping with sarcasm about what they think they deserve over black people, simply because they were born white. Blacks can never be good enough in the eyes of many white people who still think of themselves as being privileged. That is the way our justice system works.
I now have two half black grandsons. In my opinion, from what I’ve seen, boys have it harder than girls, when being harassed by the police, although I know it’s been hard on the females as well. Racism has entered my home. I know now what it is like to be frightened for my family. It is easy to say you aren’t racist when you are white, when you don’t have to worry about your family. But as long as the percentage of black to white remains the way it is in the prisons, I have reason to fear for my family as any other black grandmother does.

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       The negative way many people see black people has intentionally been driven into the heads of white people by our government over the last thirty years to support their ‘War on Drugs.’ Tell a lie long enough and people will believe it. The government is largely responsible for the intense racism still going on in America to support the bottom line profit of the corporations that own and operate a large percentage of the state prisons. to make a profit there needs to be an endless supply of people being incarcerated. Blacks, Hispanics and other minorities fill those quotas.
        There are four kinds of incarcerated people. One: People who should never be allowed to roam free among people because their crimes have proven they have no idea what the difference is between right and wrong. Two: There is nowhere to house the mentally ill. They don’t get the treatment they desperately need and are instead put in solitary confinement cells and neglected until their insanity is complete. These people often die in prison from neglect. Three: There are those that made a stupid mistake. They aren’t a danger to society and want another chance to prove it. Four: The innocent, and there are quite a few of them if you take the time to read the pleas of help from people who are supporting people who have been charged with crimes they didn’t commit.
        Judging from the number of people who are set free from prison, often after being incarcerated for decades, because they were finally proven innocent, shows you how deliberate the judicial system has been in locking up as many blacks and minorities as possible. These incarcerated people are valuable to the the corporations who want them for free labor just as plantations owners were in the past who needed slaves. In addition, there are many supplies needed for these millions of people and companies bid on the contracts to be the ones to supply them. Prison is big business. To stop this way of doing business will be fought by those corporations.
        The blacks and minorities are often forced to take pleas offered to them by public defenders who work for the District Attorney, not the people they are supposed to be defending. These people either take the plea deal, or they are threatened with having more charges added. This is what happened to Jamie. He wanted to go to court. He wanted to explain his side of the story, but he would never get that chance. He finally had to accept the seventeen year plea deal or he was threatened with  up to ninety-nine years if he insisted on going to court. They intended to scare him and they succeeded. He had no one on his side he could get advice from. He was more alone than he had ever been in his life. He knew he was screwed.
        Jamie became the next person to help fill quota the Prison Industrial Complex had been promised by our government with twenty year contracts.. The corporations were promised the prisons would be kept full or they would be paid for each empty bed. No one cared what happened to the people who got sucked into this system. He was a criminal. He didn’t deserve consideration. He was no longer a human being. He was a number. #1368189.
        Year after year Jamie sits in his prison cell and tries to live through the grief of his ruined life. The letters he wrote to me are a diary of his time inside and the inhumane way he was treated.  After years of writing, I learned for the first time, why our prisons are continuously being built. At the time, though, I didn’t know anything. I never gave one thought about the prisons. They didn’t exist in my life. It never made it into the news. The only people who understood what was happening was the black community, but if anything at all was said, it was to instill in the minds of white people that black people were dangerous and far less intelligent. They were told blacks were lazy and didn’t want to work. They grew to believe black people kept having more kids to get bigger welfare checks. The people who did do that were just as white as they were black. It wasn’t decided by skin color.

       People believe what they read in the news and when anything is said often enough, it is believed as truth. Trying to change that perception today is hard. They don’t want to believe that their hatred and fear wasn’t warranted. There had to be a reason why cops were killing black people left and right and the police were giving excuses for killing black boys and men by saying they were were afraid for their lives, even if the person they killed had no weapon. We’ve all read the stories.
        When I growing up I was scared to death of black people. There was a line down the middle of our town and the blacks lived on the other side and whites on the other. I remember wanting to touch their skin to see if it felt different. I wasn’t racist – until I got into my teens, but that is another story for another time.
        Later in life I thought, like everyone else, the purpose of our prisons was to lock up bad people so our country would be safe for everyone else. The government, during the Nixon administration, manufactured the war on crime and the war on drugs. I thought it was true. I learned the prisons were full of extremely bad people. But when a closer look is taken, it seems that in the 1980’s and 90’s our country spawned a very large number of black people we needed to be protected from.
        New prisons were being built at a fast rate and still are. The news was full of stories about crack cocaine and heroin. It was a problem. It still is, but we were told over and over we needed to be afraid of black people, not white people. They made us afraid to walk on the same side of the street with black people because they were going to rob us. Walk on the other side of the street, we were warned. Be afraid, be very afraid of anyone wearing a sweatshirt with a hoodie, as if the sweatshirt alone turned them into thugs. Black people couldn’t help it, we were taught. They were born that way. It was in their genes.
        White people were rarely associated with these drugs.  In reality, the use of drugs is  evenly split between black and white. But the government needed people to believe the problem was because of the blacks, to support the war of drugs, to support the building of endless prisons, and to support the corporations who were in it for profit. They won. The plantations of the south simply moved inside the prisons and business continued as usual. Can we undo the damage that has been done to the black race? It will be hard because it spawned a new generation of racists right on down through the police and the justice system.
        Jamie is not in prison for drugs, but everything that was happening also affected how the two races, as well as Hispanics and other minorities, were sentenced. The sentence of Life without parole is handed down to all non whites much more often. White offenders were given much lighter sentences straight across the board. You need only look at the prison population to see this. There are also many more black not guilty inmates. When an inmate is finally set free who isn’t guilty that inmate is usually black and has served on average of 20-30 years of his life for no valid reason.
        How come we have so many more dangerous people in America who need to be locked up for the rest of their lives than there are in other countries? How could we have 5% of the world’s population and 25% of all the prisoners? What was wrong with the United States that there were so many more bad people living here who didn’t need to be locked up before, but they do now? Why did the concentrate black people to arrest?  Why were so many more black people given LWOP – life without parole?  The average person never knew this. They didn’t even know it was a question they should be asking because it wasn’t reported in the news  the way it is now. Most people supported Bill Clinton’s ‘Three strikes and you’re out’ law, because we were ill informed of the reality of the prisons or the gradual takeover of the prisons by the Prison Industrial Complex. Prisons are big business. The people believed the fallacy that they were supporting the curtailing of crime being perpetrated by black people.
      It has only been only in recent years that we have been able to look back and see what has happened since the “War of Drugs” began. To make it worse, there were 6 times more black people locked up than white people, even though 77% of our population is white and 13% is black as of the census report in 2014. It hasn’t changed. The percentage is still the same. One out of every three black men can expect to spend time in prison during their life time.
      The government, the media and the people who own the prison corporations have done a hatchet job on the black population in America. The black race was expendable simply because they weren’t good enough to be white. They needed to fill the prisons with someone. The white population would have never tolerated it if there were more whites locked up than blacks. Authorities were picking people off the street and jailing them for no other reason than they were walking down the street in colored skin; any color other than white. Now people know the truth, but changing their hearts is next to impossible

end part one . . .

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Chapter List:
A Message From Someone Who Cares (forward)
First two chapters:
Everyday Dreams
Jamie’s Story

I have begun a newsletter on different aspects of the prison industry as well as updates on the progress of the book. I’m looking for a reasonable cost publishing house that can also include CD’s of the piano music found at http://soundcloud.com/sonni-quick, most of which was written for the book.Fill out the contact form to be put on the mailing list which will only go out monthly. (You won’t get bombarded like some businesses do!)

The Elderly In Prison – Is It Right?

Elderly-Prisoner
photo source: famm.org

What happens to the old people in prison? No one thinks about the elderly in prison.  Most people think of prisons as places where dangerous criminals are locked up because society needs to be protected from them. They are locked up and the key thrown away for 30 – 40 – 50 years or more, until they die of old age. LWOP – Life Without Parole. A young man, or woman, as young as mid teens, committed a crime, and had the rest of his life was taken away. Twenty-two states try children as young as seven as adults. We don’t often picture inmates as people with walkers and wheelchairs, or think they spent nearly their entire life in a cell.  It also takes approximately $30,000 a year of the taxpayer’s money to pay for one inmate to live in the horrible conditions found inside prisons. Senior inmates are almost double that.  There are 2.33 million inmates in the the Us.  How many prisoners are there worldwide.  It is a scary thought.elderly prison inmate

                                       source credit: ca.news.yahoo.com

It is difficult to write only about the elderly in prison without explaining what the prisons are for everyone, and the treatment all inmates  get. It is how the younger inmates are treated that affects them as they age. If they are unlucky enough to spend multiple decades locked up they will go through a lifetime of malnutrition and insufficient medical care that affects the elderly in ways that are cruel and unnecessary. That is what happens to any institution that becomes “for profit”. On the outside we don’t consider age 50 to be elderly. In prison it is. Age 50 and above is the fastest growing segment of the prison population. Some prisons are nursing homes with barbed wire.

This is the effect of the “War on Drugs” when people were handed life sentences like candy. The sentences they were given would not be given today, yet they keep these people inside long after they paid for whatever  crime they committed. Today, everyone wants to carry a gun. It’s their constitutional right, they yell. The want to be able to strap them on their hip like some long ago cowboy. But in 1980 you went to prison if you were caught with a gun in your possession. These men are dying.  They want to see their grandchildren and spend a little time with their family.  They are no threat to anyone.  Because they are in prison, the caregivers hired to help them are not even allowed to give them a hug.  They can’t show kindness  to a dying man.  They are in prison, after all.

This is a link to one of the best articles I’ve read about the aging in prison. There are also experiences of about a half dozen men.  It made me cry.  One man saw a tree for the first time in 20 years – a tree – and the experience so moved him.  The Painful Price Of Aging In Prison

In the 1980’s, when Ronald Regan began “The War on Drugs”, those who were apprehended with even tiny amount of marijuana were given extremely long prison sentences. If someone is arrested with alcohol, a very harmful substance, it’s okay and legal. Death from alcohol abuse is common.  But can’t prohibit alcohol.  We tried that already.  So now they have tried with marijuana, classifying it to be as dangerous and lethal as heroin. Its a Class 1 drug. There has never been even one death from marijuana, ever, and you can’t OD on it like you can with alcohol poisoning. But this phony war has imprisoned hundreds of thousands of people and have made certain corporations very rich.

Now, 35 years later, these elderly inmates are very sick and dying. The war on drugs stopped nothing, but it filled the prisons and the corporations took over because of the money they could make.  What is the point of giving someone a fifty year sentence for drugs?  If he has done a crime, give him an appropriate sentence.  It serves no purpose to take away his entire life. And when they get proper medical care in their younger years and they are fed horrible food so they don’t get the nutrition they need to stay healthy, then you have people dying when they are fifty. Renal failure is one of biggest medical problems.

Michael-Tyrrell-handcuffe-010
photo credit: theguardian.com                                                                                    This was taken the day before this man died.  He is handcuffed to the bed.

 We have learned in recent years that much of the evidence that was used throughout the years to find people guilty, was wrong. When that mistake  is found, often through DNA, or finding evidence that had been suppressed that would have exonerated them from the start, you would think they would be released, but they aren’t.  Even when the courts are presented with new evidence, setting them free is nearly impossible. Even if a judge overturns a conviction, the prison won’t set him free without more years of hassle, as seen by the case of three men called The Angola Three All three had their convictions over turned after spending decades in prison, but the prison wouldn’t let them go. 85% of all inmates in Angola, die in Angola. With attorneys trying to get them released, one man died, one man who was near dying did get out and died a few days later.  There is still one man inside.  After yet another court case where he was deemed innocent and the judge said they would not be allowed to file another case against him, the prosecutors are determined that he will not get out.

WallaceWilkersonWoodfox.jpg

As of 2015 it is against the law to sentence a minor to life without parole, but it isn’t retroactive. If you were sentenced in 2014 the new law isn’t for you. And if you are 65 and already had been imprisoned for nearly 50 years you won’t be allowed to have even a small portion of your life back. To date, it has been unsuccessfully fought.

This article talks about the Supreme Court ruling about youth offenders.  For every youth that has been given life with no parole, he will die in prison as an old man. There are women, but the majority are men. Juvenile Life Without Parole

prison elderly2

Are these elderly prisoners a danger to society?  No. But sadly, after spending decades locked up inside a prison, and not having access to decent medical care, dental care and nutritious food, you body is going to break down faster. You will be much older than than the same aged person who didn’t go through that. A persons body can be neglected for only so long before it breaks down.

Because of poor dental hygiene, and no six month check ups, teeth pain is a  common problem that is ignored even after the teeth become infected and an abscess has formed.  Many problems could have easily been taken care of when it was a simple cavity.  Even after a tooth has abscessed, painfully evident by swollen a mouth and an inmate screaming in pain, they will let him cry in pain for a long time before anything is done. To make matters worse, guards will taunt the inmate and laugh at his discomfort. If he is are extremely lucky he might get an aspirin, but that won’t help the problem of increasing infection. Teeth pain is one of the worst pains to endure and for prisons to allow inmates to suffer this way is inexcusable. If you are in pain, too bad. Eventually, he will be taken to a dentist, but by then he will  have suffered for weeks or months. The dentist could be a two or three day bus ride away, with the inmate being shackled to other prisoners. Spending a lifetime in prison, as your teeth rot because of bad food and lack of care, is inhumane. I have learned  these things through many letters I have received over the years from inmates.

prison food,lockdown,ad seginmate privileges,no justice for inmates
example of prison food on while on lockdown Photo credit: pennsylvaniacooking.blogspot.com

After decades of poor quality food, barely above starvation, it takes a toll on health. If you are one of the few who has family who puts money on your books – a term used when money is sent that can be spent in the commissary or to make calls – you could purchase a variety of food very much like what you could buy at a gas station convenience store. Fresh vegetables or salads are not on the menu.

Disease is rampant and are most are untreated. Many illnesses wouldn’t have ended in death if the inmate had received care. The notion that inmates get free medical treatment is highly exaggerated. They have to fight for medical care and often lose. My grandson’s father, Jamie Cummings, who today turned 33, has been in prison for ten years.  He not only has epilepsy, he was recently been diagnosed with Pericarditis, an inflation of the sac around the heart. He had a seizure that was severe enough for him to be taken to a hospital.  Quite often they just let him lay in his cell because the guard doesn’t want to do the paperwork.

It was during this hospital stay they discovered the problem with his heart. They kept him there for four days monitoring his heart.  The cardiologist told him – and wrote in his report the medication he needed.  It is easily treatable but is often fatal if left untreated. The sac around the heart hardens and blood cant pump right.  It causes chest pains and difficulty moving around because the body doesn’t get enough oxygen. The medical unit at the prison won’t give him the medication that will save his life.  I’m now fighting for him. Jamie has been having chest pains. He talked to a nurse using video chat in the medical unit.

Although there are many inmates with chronic illnesses at Huntsville Prison, there is often no medical staff there for long stretches of time. They leave at 5 PM and return around 3 AM.  Although in my experience I have called there quite a few times as early as 2 PM and receptionist tells me they are already gone for the day. If an inmate needs medical help someone calls a nurse at a different location using video chat. What good is that? There are many chronic illnesses that need more than someone just looking at them on a screen. Older inmates need better care than that. When Jamie had his latest video chat because of chest pain, the nurse said he didn’t “look” like he was in pain and told him to drink more water, the nurse’s remedy for everything.  Jamie does get medication for seizures but he still has them. He went into the hospital with that medication so they can’t decide he doesn’t need them.

The medical care isn’t free.  Every January he is charged $100 he doesn’t have.  Every time I put money into his account  they will take half until it’s paid.  I pay it because as lousy as the care is he needs to be able to call for help when he has a seizure.  Many inmates don’t.  If they don’t need to see a doctor for the rest of the year he still has to pay $100 for one visit. sickness runs rampant in prisons.  If some things aren’t treated they could get really sick or pass it on to others.

You can read  Jamie’s story at:   My Name Is Jamie. My Life In Prison

Cost is the bottom line for everything.  Cut the cost. Who cares?  Inmates are a forgotten society that has no value. Jamie’s experience is just ONE person, one human being.  2.3 million people are locked up in the United States. If they gave inmates the medical treatment they needed, there would be no profit. Investors would be unhappy. After all, they are just inmates, and most of them are black. They don’t care who they hurt.  It seems greed is the reason for everything these days.

A picture of this wouldn’t do it justice.  You need to read the article:       Ten Worst Prisons in America

Another large percentage of inmates are Hispanic. Yes, America is in a uproar about illegal aliens, but Hispanic families with wives and children are separated from their husbands and imprisoned having committed no crime. How bad would your country have to be to risk crossing the border of another country illegally.  Maybe they shouldn’t have done it, but does that mean we have the right to enslave them?  Many have severe medical needs.

I watched a video of a new prison being auctioned off and prospective buyers were promised an endless supply of people. Hispanics caught at the boarder were going to keep the new prison full.  The bidding started at $5,000,000. Today, Texas already has more than 110 prisons.

Many inmates become diabetic because of a high carb diet which turns to sugar. They aren’t going to get the diet they need. Arthritis or any common “old age” disease, won’t get treated. Many illnesses a prisoner has is treatable, but in prison they are left untreated regardless of the pain, until it gets very bad and then the absolute minimum is done.

When sentencing became absurd during the “War on Drugs” in the 1980’s, no one looked at the future affects and thought about the elderly inmates who needed more care than what they would be willing to provide. How could the prison continue to be profitable if they had to pay for necessary medical procedures? The law states they have a right to medical care, but they don’t say how much or when.

When prisons, like hospitals and schools, became “for profit”, corporations wanted to jump on the bandwagon. The Prison Industrial Complex took over many prisons . States were broke. They couldn’t repair roads or schools, and they couldn’t afford the costs of the increasing populations of the prisons while having to constantly build new prisons to house them.  Corporations, like CCA and the GEO Group, offered to take the prisons off the hands of the states and run them. But here was the deal: the states had to sign 20 year contracts promising the prisons would be kept 90-100% full AT ALL TIMES, or the state would have to pay them for the empty beds. That could run into millions of dollars. The corporations sold the deal by telling the states they would now have more money for roads and schools. That didn’t happen. Instead, there were many lawsuits because the corporations were cutting too many corners for profit.  People were dying because of the lack of medical care. They cut out too much food and other necessities. Some of the states that signed those contracts will not be renewing. But these corporations donate a lot of money to the campaigns of politicians to guarantee they will vote on issues that are in the best interest of these corporations. This puts a lot of pressure on both sides.

New prisons are still being built, even though this year there has been much in the media about lowering the prison populations. In my opinion, it is a sham. There has been no mention of the 20 year contracts already in force. There were investors and stock holders who are looking forward to all the profit  to be make. The United States has 5% of the world’s population and 25% of all the prisoners. Do we really have more criminals? No. This system preys on blacks and Hispanics.  Many people get imprisoned that shouldn’t be. That is the only way they get the support they need from the white privileged population who need to keep racism alive and well.  Every black person they arrest could find guilty of something, guilty or not.  There are six times more black people than white people in prison, yet black people are only 13% of the population.  Prisons are filled with black people, a much lower percentage of Hispanics and the occasional white.  The media, bought and paid by those who make the profit, convinced the public that black men are dangerous. They start in elementary schools, where 6x more black kids are imprisoned in juvenile detention.

Although this article is focused on the elderly, most of them started out young kids when they were first imprisoned.  It is these laws that need to be changed, so people don’t spend their entire lives in prison.  Prison should only be for those who really are a threat to society, and that percentage is much smaller than you think.  To understand the problem with the elderly, you need to understand why there is a problem and why it is as bad as it is. Many lives have been ruined for that reason.

At a time when it would be compassionate to let a dying man be at home, it is denied. There is something called – compassionate release. An inmate can apply to be let out to die at home.  Four times this year an inmate applied for it and four times it was denied, and since the process is very long they often die before and answer is given.

SQ sm cages

 There is one last thing I haven’t mentioned – mental illness. That is another article by itself. So many people who have a mental illness have been put in a prison because there was nowhere else to put them. Conditions inside made their problem worse and they often get put in solitary confinement for their own protection.  Even those who have committed crimes often have a mental illness that is made far worse because of how they are treated. Many try to commit suicide and some succeed.  They have also been left in their cells to die with no one helping them, with staff watching them die through the window on their cell door. You don’t want to see the video I watched for an hour, watching a man take his final breath and not one person, including medical staff would help him until after he was dead.  Then they did CPR so they could say they followed the book. It was one less person to care for. There are many lawsuits. There is almost no help for people who need therapy. This last picture is a group therapy session. Effective? You decide.

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CHAPTERS OF “INSIDE THE FORBIDDEN OUTSIDE”
Forward – A Message From Someone Who Cares
Everyday Dreams
I Love You Always, Daddy
Jamie’s Story

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Unanswered Questions of Right and Wrong – What Do You Say?

black prisoners at San Quentin
photo source: http://www.nytimes.com

So many unanswered questions of right and wrong. Ten years ago, before I met Jamie, I was totally clueless about how the prison system worked and how it connects to our past history of slavery.  I didn’t know anyone in prison.  My knowledge came from the same place everyone gets their information – TV and movies – and slanted propaganda the media is paid to report, depending on which political party that particular news organization is affiliated with.

There is a need to justify to American citizens why there has been such an enormous need to lock up a high percentage of our “lesser than us” citizens – more than almost all other countries combined.  This is the mass incarceration of blacks. The people needed to fill the prisons were expendable. They were, and still are, the blacks, and then minorities, and now foreign citizens, AKA illegal aliens. It is so important to keep us afraid of them, even though we created the need to be afraid in the first place. Why?

white power, racism
photo source: wbez.org

Why has it been so important for white people to believe black people have a higher propensity to be criminals than white people?  Has it been our ego? Could we not stand the thought that black people are just as good as we are?  No, we had to keep them down – keep them in their place.  Why do black people have to be so much more afraid of police than white people? We know that is a fact.  All of us know it, yet it continues to happen.  Why do my half-black grandchildren have to be afraid that a cop will shoot them in the back?  Because that is what cops do, and get away with, because black people are so dangerous, so they tell us.

Why do so many white people think they are better than blacks?  Do they think they are good Christians?  They say they are good Christians.  Some racist people will even tell you they aren’t racist because they don’t want other people to know.  I’m not lumping all Christians into that mix, because even black people are Christians, even though they aren’t supposed to be. “Dirty niggers”, we have called them so many times.  It’s hard to even type the letters it is so disgusting.  But not printing them doesn’t make it go away. I could type half the word and put ** in the middle for the missing letters, but that doesn’t change the word, either.  Since the time black people have been slaves, we – the white people couldn’t picture black people being equal to us. The white race did a horrible things to this race of people with beautiful colored skin of many shades.  White people have tried for a hundred years to acquire their beautiful brown tones of skin.  Because of the law of cause and effect or, you reap what you sow, is strict, a price will be paid for what was done.  Even though the current generation of people were not alive while slavery was being enacted there is something drastically wrong because some kids are still being raised with the same hate their parents were probably raised.

Now, with everything going on today in the world with terrorism in the middle east, that we created, children are now being taught to hate Muslims, as if Christianity was such a loving religion. So much blood has been shed in the name of Christianity.  The degree of hate I hear from those who say they are Christians is sickening. Any child now who is racist learned it from the adults in his life – and that is inexcusable.   Again I say, not all Christians fall into this group, but it is enough of them that it stands out.

There is something massively wrong with America, starting with the people who govern it.   What we were never told, as the prisons swelled with people, was the real reason why we had to lock up so many people.  Sure, there was the war of drugs, but that wasn’t the real reason.  That was just the easiest reason for the public to swallow.  Our government knew all along  this was never going to get rid of drugs or crime.  What it did was allow certain corporations to make a heck of a lot of money, and those corporations gave politicians a lot of campaign money.  now they have to support what these corporations want.   The people in power had to prey on the minds of people who were susceptible to believing black people were dangerous.  They needed a reason to destroy black families.  It was the only way to legally continue to enslave them. Take away the fathers, and make sure they were kept poor. Lock up their kids in juvenile detention for poor or nonexistent excuses. Treat black kids differently than white kids.  Make sure they have a hard time getting an education.  Show society that black people are beneath white people.  If you are ignorant and think being white makes you smarter, or you deserve more, then there is no hope for you.  Because, no matter what you believe, it doesn’t make it true.

Cops have killed too many people with the stupid excuse they were afraid for their lives as they shot the person as he was walking away from them.  That excuse won’t work any more.  People are angry.

While locking up so many people, no one put enough thought into how much it was going to cost to keep them locked up. They also didn’t think about how much money it would take to care for them medically.  And what about the elderly? Who pays for them? Everyone – we all pay – it comes out of every taxpayer’s pocket. But who cares?  Not the corporations with the contracts.

cca. prison corporations, prison industrial complex
photo source:
correctionsproject.com

So much money is being made by the prison industrial complex – fine upstanding American corporations who want their products to be made by incarcerated slaves for free or close to it. Do you boycott these companies?  No – you don’t – because you have no idea which companies I’m talking about.  Have you even thought to find out who these corporations are?  No, and they count on that.

You get angry when animals are hurt.  You get angry over the vets who are mistreated.  You get upset about the homeless, but you think the inmates in prison deserve what they get.  In the prisons there are corporations who bid on the commissary products they sell, and corporations who are supposed to supply the food, and corporations who are supposed to take care of medical needs, and corporations who are supposed to supply educational needs.   But they can only make the big bucks by denying these things to the inmates as often as possible. Do you think they are going to give up their profit when they have more money than anyone to fight it?

In prison, Jamie is being denied medications for his heart.  Just this week I have called 4 days in a row trying to reach someone in the medical unit to ask why.  I can never reach the right person, or they are out of the office and they won’t return my calls.  Is there an attorney reading this who can help me?   The prison doesn’t care if they kill him. Would you stand for that if it was YOUR family?  Is anyone angry for the inmates who aren’t receiving care, or do you fall for the propaganda that they deserve it? Do you believe they get three squares a day and free medical?  Are you the kind of person who believes what you read and doesn’t look at the other side of the story?

These things make me angry.  I know there are really bad people in prison, but every single one of them is a human being.  The percentage of the really bad is small compared to the rest of the prison population who got a sentence that did not fit the crime, or is innocent.  Add to that the ones who are mentally ill and have no way to get the help they need.  I’m not trying to say that everyone imprisoned should be let go.  I’m talking about the ones imprisoned who are there to fill a bed so more profit can be made. These are the ones given extraordinarily long sentences that serve no purpose beyond financial gain.  The parole board won’t parole them even though they have numerous letters of recommendation that they be given their life back.  These are the people inside who help fill the percentage dictated in the contracts the corporations have with the prisons.  These contracts say  the prisons have to be kept full or the government has to pay them for empty beds.  Do you know about this? It doesn’t matter that these are real people whose lives have been destroyed to fill a quota.

Our injustice system is sick.  It is the same system that will arrest a young girl for using the camera on her phone to document a cop abusing his role and hurt a student and then arrested the girl who took pictures of the abuse.  We protect the criminals with a badge and instead lock of the citizens who are whistleblowing the cops.  How long can this country function with these corrupt standards?  How many people have to have their lives destroyed for the sake of the profit for someone else?  Why is this allowed? I know there are people and organizations who are trying to stop it. Why isn’t it working?  Who is pulling the strings?  Not one of us is safe.

I have read monstrously stupid comments that people leave on the internet when they have been sucked into the propaganda and lies.  You would think by now they’d be tired of being sheep, led around by their noses. Even so, many of those who do know the truth do nothing.  They read – they sing to the choir – but when it comes right down to helping any of the people who have been destroyed by this system it is too much for them. How can people not want to help?  If each person reached out to even one person, what a difference it would make. So many people are fanatical about saving unborn children but they do NOTHING to help a living human being who needs to know that he matters. No, that is too much to ask.  What has anyone done for one of these babies, born into an abusive home who ends up in a foster home and then over 70% of them end up in prison because of that abuse?  What have you done for these people?  The people who want to control other people’s pregnancies are a bunch of hypocrites.  You climb onto a cause and shoot off your mouth but really have no concern for people. If you did, you’d do something for someone already living.

This election cycle there is a lot of talk for the first time about changing our prison system but there has been no talk about the contracts the prison corporations have.  So, to me, it sounds like a farce.  Tell the people what they want to hear, knowing it will just be another thing that will never happen, just like all the promises were got in the past that never happened.  But people will vote based on the promises that mean nothing. Then, when it is too late to do anything, they will get angry when the promises aren’t fulfilled.  Then they will call their elected leaders names.  Big deal, what will that accomplish? People need to do something now, not when it is too late.

Are you beginning to understand?

http://facebook.com/jamielifeinprison . . .Blog posts and news about injustice in the world

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