Wednesday, April 29:
Yesterday was a great day. Nothing all that eventful happened, but I was given a pair of reading glasses from one of the other prisoners. I could read before, but it was slow going. In the proces I’ve rediscovered the joy of learning by reading books.
I’ve been listening to audio books over the last few years with very little reading. Over the last couple of days I read Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography. He led a very interesting life, and I see a lot of parallels to my own.
I was also able to browse the titles in the library at the last clothing change. I picked out a book on Chinese cooking (I’ve decided to learn how to cook), the basics of book editing, a book on script writing, and a couple more biographies.
Nothing much happens on the typical day, and that’s perhaps the saddest part of all this. The routine? Lights out/lockdown at 11pm. Breakfast is either at 6, in which case they re-lock the cages until 7am, or breakfast is served after 7 some days. Lunch is around noon, dinner is around 5pm. Druggie buggie is two times a day. Clothing changes, where everyone is issued clothes worn by who knows who, are changed 3 times a week. Razors for shaving are offered every other day. A few days a week we go outside into a caged area for 45 minutes. A few times a week there’s bible study for those that want to go. Visitation Wednesday and Saturday; commissary orders on Monday are delivered Thursday or Friday (what do you expect from a government run store?). That’s it, week after week.
Most of the prisoners skip breakfast or return to sleep afterwards. They start getting up around 10-11am, with everyone up for lunch. To fill the gaps they watch TV, play cards, write letters or sleep.
To suggest that “corrections” or rehabilitation in any way shape or form is happening here, I can only label a bold faced lie. The prisoners here blame their circumstances, many lack basic communication skills, and their dispute resolution skills are centered on violence. There have been two fist fights in the showers (out of camera view) since I’ve been here.
If you think about it, the state is teaching them to be slackers! Sleep till noon, sit around watching TV (or playing video games), no job and expect someone else to supply your room and board.
What’s worse, propbation terms are set up so that even contact with a government police officer is a violation. That’s right, get pulled over as a passenger in a friend’s car, and they will throw you back in jail.
This system is set up with one primary purpose, to extract money from taxpayers, “criminals,” their friends and families, to feed the state. It’s no surprise some states are now charging the prisoners $40-60/day they incarcerate. Wouldn’t it be easier to restitute the victim and make them whole again? Of course not! That wouldn’t feed the ever growing monster that is the state, and its fascist corporate prison monopoly n so called “justice.”
There is a better way…