Restorative Justice Conference

Alabama Restorative Justice Conference

23, 24 & 25 June 2000

Montgomery, Alabama

Attached is PC's letter supporting the Alabama Restorative Justice Conference June 2000. This is an international conference that will be held in Montgomery, Alabama. All organizations that are interested in supporting this conference should get their letters of support to the Alabama Prison Project as soon as possible. Their address is on the letter attached. I am attaching it as a Word file because I would like all of you to see the exact formatting, letterhead and footer we have used which won't reproduce by clipping the text to this post.




Thursday, September 02, 1999

Lucia Penland
Executive Director
Alabama Prison Project
215 Clay Street
Montgomery, AL 36104

RE: Sponsorship for Alabama Restorative Justice Conference, 23, 24 & 25 June 2000, Montgomery, Alabama

It is with great pleasure that I confirm by this letter that The P.A.T.R.I.C.K. Crusade will be a co-sponsor for the Alabama Restorative Justice Conference 2000 in Montgomery, Alabama. We are excited about this international conference as a means to educate the public with regard to the meaning of Restorative Justice and its potential for addressing and solving the gross INjustices in today's criminal justice system.

In our view, Restorative Justice is an essential element to reducing crime in America and around the world. We support Restorative Justice because it provides a realistic way to help victims of crime heal, while at the same time, providing offenders with a humane environment for repentance, instruction, restitution and rehabilitation. Thus healing occurs on both sides of the fence, and as much as possible, justice is restored. We further support Restorative Justice because it has the potential of returning criminal justice to communities and removing it from the hands of our oppressive government.

P.A.T.R.I.C.K. Crusade members strongly believe that Justice for all is the key to a successful, productive and prosperous American society. If one thinks education is expensive, try ignorance.

The criminal justice system in America is presently broken. America has become a Prison Industry nation and the world is looking at us with disdain. Rightfully so.

Judicial misconduct is rampant and without proper checks and balances. There are 5.9 million Americans in the penal system today. Prison abuse is running wild. We are seeing scores of innocent people being locked up and then abused by the courts who are overwhelmed with cases, prosecutors who bathe in immunity as they violate constitutional law to get convictions, attorneys who scramble for the almighty dollar rather than seeking justice, and by prison officials who thrive on promoting medical neglect, beatings, and even killings - all hidden from the Public's view.

The system is broken because the Public does not pay attention to the wrongs that are being done all around them. We believe that promoting revenge and hatred is not the answer to reducing crime. It is instead the vehicle for increasing crime. Yet, our Politicians scream that victims need "closure," stating that death and punishment is the ONLY way. Politicians know nothing of crime prevention, nor do they understand that forgiveness provides "closure." Our goal is to open their eyes, to raise their conscientious.

It is the Public that is unwittingly hurting itself: victims, offenders, families and communities alike. The Public is misinformed by politicians who are afraid they will appear "soft on crime" when perhaps the bulk of crimes in America are performed by the very institutions the Public has hired - the courts and prisons - to clean up the streets.

We are indeed People Aligned To Replace Injustice & Cruelty with Knowledge [PATRICK]. The Alabama Restorative Justice Conference 2000 has the potential of awakening the Public with information they did not know exists. We wholeheartedly support this effort and we are delighted to announce our co-sponsorship.

Blessings,

Sherry L. Swiney
Executive Director, PATRICK CRUSADE
Alabama Headquarters
P.O. Box 1891, Alabaster, AL 35007
Website: www.patrickcrusade.org


-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 12:02 AM
Subject: Art Exhibits Needed

Attention Everyone!!!!

As a member of the Alabama Prison Project steering committee for the upcoming Alabama Restorative Justice Conference, which has been scheduled for 23, 24 & 25 June 2000, I have volunteered to secure pledges for art exhibits. These exhibits will feature displays of inmate art work and that of victims. Among the exhibits -- if possible -- the quilt that is being made by Patrick Crusade member, Beverly George, shall be displayed. This quilt is to be similar to the AIDS Quilt and its purpose is to draw attention to the thousands of children that are adversely affected by (1) their parents being taken to prison, and (2) as victims of crime or injustice.

The purpose of the conference is to educate the public as to what Restorative Justice is and how it can change the criminal justice system for everyone: victim, offender, families and communities, for the better. It's time to take criminal injustice away from government and give criminal justice back to communities where it belongs.

The Restorative Justice Conference will be an International Conference and it will be held in the State of Alabama [site location still being worked out]. Steering Committee members are in the process of obtaining commitments from nationally and internationally known persons to be the main speakers at the Conference [confirmations to follow]. The prominence of these speakers will make this a national media event.

ON THE ARTWORK

If anyone knows a prisoner or victim who paints, sculpts, creates arts and crafts, please contact them immediately, asking if they would be willing to prepare an exhibit for display at this conference. The items shall be returned to its owner when the conference is over. We would like to see a large display for public viewing. We do not need the artwork in hand until shortly before the conference. We do however, need pledges before our next steering committee meeting [scheduled for August 20th 1999]. So....pass the word to your contacts and let me know who is willing to pledge their artwork for this important, noteworthy, occasion.

ON THE QUILT

Beverly George t4justice@netzero.net has already begun making the quilt. She needs more quilted squares sent to her. Each square shall have a child's name either written or sewn in the center of the square. To accomplish this, please contact friends, families, churches, schools, or whoever, asking for quilted squares to be made. Anyone wishing to assist Beverly in the making of this quilt, please let me know. Sewn together sections can be done and sent to Beverly for attachment to the PC quilt. We want it to be as large as possible.

PATRICK CRUSADE BANNER

We will need a banner made for the conference. Who knows how to get this done? Who knows how long this takes to manufacture? Who knows how much this costs?

SUPPORT LETTERS - CO-SPONSORS AND PARTNERS

Letters of support from organizations and businesses from around the world are requested. All co-sponsors and partners are being asked to submit letters of support by next meeting AUGUST 20, 1999. These letters will be used to show broad base support for the conference. All partners and co-sponsors must understand that their role is supportive and no one will be speaking for this committee except the members of the steering committee. The Alabama Prison Project will welcome all but they must understand that this is a project of the Alabama Prison Project.

The primary representative of each organization or business that supports this conference is requested to send their support letter to the Alabama Prison Project at the following address [CERJ's letter and PATRICK Crusade's letter are already forthcoming].

Support letters, confirming sponsorship, should be sent to the following address [understand that support letters are not confirmation of financial support.

Alabama Prison Project
c/o Restorative Justice Conference
215 Clayton Street
Montgomery, AL 36104

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Wednesday, July 28, 1999 11:50 PM
Subject: [patrickcrusade] Fw: habitual Offender Act

Everyone, look at this! The upcoming Alabama Restorative Justice conference in June 2000 is already having a good effect on some individuals, and we've only just begun. This is just a taste of what we can expect to see when we really get the ball rolling on RJ. I would like to see everyone start planning to be in Alabama for this conference. Mark your calendars and start setting aside traveling monies every paycheck, a little at a time, until you have what you need to be here. Patrick Crusade will begin as soon as possible setting aside funds to help PC members with registration fees [fees are still to be determined].

This conference is going to be national media shattering and will have a world-wide affect on the American INjustice system - all for the better.

Blessings to all,
Sherry Swiney
ALABAMA HEADQUARTERS
Executive Director, PATRICK CRUSADE www.patrickcrusade.org
CERJ-Alabama Coordinator www.cerj.org
The Bannister Foundation - Alabama Co-ordinator
http://www.banfound.u-net.com/index.htm
###########################################################
It is the inability to experience the suffering of another human being
as one's own, that allows gross suffering to continue on planet earth.
###########################################################
What is needed is a growth in consciousness, not a growth of government.
###########################################################
"There is nothing more terrifying than ignorance in action." - Goethe
###########################################################

-----Original Message-----
From: Dksummerf@aol.com <Dksummerf@aol.com
Date: Wednesday, July 28, 1999 8:31 PM
Subject: Fwd: habitual Offender Act

Just to keep all updated on MIRACLES that are happening-Continue to PRAY-Diana Summerford

-----Original Message-----
From: Rhonda Brownstein <rbrownstein@splcenter.org
To: dksummerf@aol.com <dksummerf@aol.com
Date: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 8:00 PM
Subject: habitual Offender Act

Ms. Summerford: I am an attorney at the Southern Poverty Law Center. I received your name in an email about the upcoming Restorative Justice Conference and it mentioned that you have a son serving life for non-violent offenses under the habitual offender act. A reporter from the Anniston Star recently called me. He's doing a feature article on this issue and is looking to interview inmates in your son's situation. If you are interested in talking with him, I can't remember his name, but his phone number is 334-264-8711.

Good luck.
Rhonda Brownstein

-----Original Message-----
From: Ojibwawife@aol.com <Ojibwawife@aol.com
To: Taoss@worldnet.att.net <Taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 9:10 PM
Subject: Prisoners art

My husband is a Native American inmate, serving time in Colorado, although he is originally a Minnesota State inmate. He is also a wonderful artist. I heard about your show and the need for artists. We also have a nonprofit organization, N.A.T.I.V.E.S. that works for Native American inmates' Civil, Spiritual and Human rights. It is an uphill battle.

Please let us know how we can help. Renee Still Day, Executive Director, N.A.T.I.V.E.S, Pueblo, Colorado

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Ojibwawife@aol.com <Ojibwawife@aol.com
Date: Wednesday, July 28, 1999 11:34 AM
Subject: Re: Prisoners art

The exhibit will be held during the Alabama Restorative Justice Conference on 23, 24 & 25 June 2000 so there's time to prepare. I would be delighted if your husband would submit some of his art work for this important conference. They need to be mounted or framed for the display, with your name and address plus his name and prison location on the back, so the exhibits can be returned when the conference is done.

I would also appreciate if N.A.T.I.V.E.S. would write a letter of support to the Alabama Prison Project. In that regard, I am copying my entire notification post for your information at the bottom of this post. It explains what we are trying to do and includes addresses.

Blessings to you, your husband and N.A.T.I.V.E.S.
Taoss

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: ALABAMA CAUSE <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Cc: John V. Wilmerding <jvw@together.net; Aaron McCall - Alabama Prison Project-2 <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Date: Tuesday, June 29, 1999 7:51 AM
Subject: Fw: Alabama RJ Conference in Planning Stages

Hi Everyone,

Here is the latest on the Restorative Justice Conference planned for Alabama. I'll keep you informed as things continue to develop. Please feel free to get others involved. And also, please feel free to contact Aaron McCall directly if you want to help with the organizing. We need a BIG turnout so that we can achieve public awareness. This conference will be very good for Alabama and could put the plight of the INjustice system and abhorrent prison conditions in Alabama on the map to effect some major changes for the good of all. I hope we can get participation from the Alabama 3 Strikes people, Kairos, and many others. Does anyone know how to get in touch with the Alabama Constitution Group?

Blessings,
Sherry Swiney

-----Original Message-----
From: John V. Wilmerding <jvw@together.net
To: CERJ_Initiatives@cerj.org<CERJ_Initiatives@cerj.org
Date: Tuesday, June 29, 1999 4:56 AM
Subject: Alabama RJ Conference in Planning Stages

From: Aaron McCall <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
To: John Wilmerding <cerj@cerj.org
Subject: A friendly note of thanks.
Date: Tue, 29 Jun 1999 00:15:30

John,

Thanks for spreading the word about our planned Restorative Justice Conference here in Alabama.

The status of the conference is as follows:

1. We are assembling a planning committee that will help develop the contents of the conference, as well as identify potential speakers and plenary participants and workshop facilitators;

2. We are currently developing and identifying potential sponsors and financial sponsors in order to provide scholarship to attendees who cannot afford to pay to attend, honoraria for speakers, and facility rental;

3. We desire any help in these areas -- it will be greatly appreciated. We would like to present a production of the "Cape Man" by Paul Simon -- if we can get permission to do it as part of the Conference -- and hopefully Paul will make an appearance if that can be arranged.

Thank you for contacting Justice Fellowship's Nick Brown on our behalf, but please clarify to him that my association with Dr. Martin Luther King was limited to public demonstrations as a young teenager (13 years old) in Lowndes County (Hayneville, AL). I met Dr. King on several occasions and was greatly impressed by him in many ways.

I am employed by the Alabama Prison Project in Montgomery, AL, of which Lucia Penland is the Executive Director. The Alabama Prison Project was founded some 23 years ago as part of the Southern Coalition Of Jails and Prisons, and became an independent not-for-profit prisoner advocacy agency when it lost its financial support. We have been in the forefront on many issues, including prison conditions, prisoner treatment, and death penalty abolition, and we were recently instrumental in mounting the only successful clemency effort in recent Alabama history -- that of Judith Ann Neelly.

The idea for the RJ Conference is a cooperative effort of the Prison Project Staff and other concerned individuals including academicians, Clergy and other lay persons.

Once again, thank you for all the great work that you do on behalf of all of us out here. I have gained so much since I subscribed to this list -- the information that you provide is really helpful and will go a long way in planning our RJ efforts.

If there is anyone on the list who will like to help sponsor this conference or might have ideas for its content, please contact me -- send email to me at <halbert@mindspring.com or <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net -- you may also telephone me at 334-264-7416, and if it is in regard to the conference, you may speak with either myself or Lucia Penland at that number. Send any conference sponsorships or financial contributions in care of the Alabama Prison
Project, Attn: Restorative Justice Committee. Any contributions will be accepted, acknowledged, and greatly appreciated.

Thanks for allowing me this space!

Aaron McCall <halbert@mindspring.com or <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
--
-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron McCall - Alabama Prison Project <halbert@mindspring.com
Date: Saturday, July 24, 1999 12:34 AM
Subject: Alabama e-mail addresses

Hi Aaron,

Wonderful to meet you today at our first steering committee meeting for the Alabama RJ Conference. Here are my Alabama contacts so far. Dksummerf (Dksummerf@aol.com) is with Kairos and has a list of about 200 names associated with the 3 strikes cause in Alabama. Please feel free to contact her [mention my name for association/recognition].

Alabama Group
Vicki (VLCoffman@aol.com) - PC member
selia gamble (icandoit@airnet.net) - PC member
Robbie Carter (RSC702222@aol.com) - my sister-in-law
Renaldi (riderquick@aol.com) - Kairos
Pam Thrasher (icandoit@airnet.net) - PC member
Mary (fgleason@bellsouth.net) - Kairos
Linda Peavy (LindaPeavy@webtv.net) - PC member
June Padilla (chaserbaby@webtv.net) - PC member
Judy Cumbee (judysi@mindspring.com) - PC member
Joan Parker (nanaj@hiwaay.net) - Kairos
Eileen (EditWest@aol.com) - PC member
Diane Jernigan (JERNIGAN-DL@redstone.army.mil) - PC member
Diana (Dksummerf@aol.com) - Kairos
Carolyn (Bransnana1@aol.com) - Kairos
Becky Pardue (beckypardue@mindspring.com) - Michael Pardue's wife
Cedric Little (littlb@hlthpart.com) - newspaper reporter

For letter writing campaign, I've written to Jim Harris ProgressiveSecretary@earthlink.net and explained that you would be contacting him. For me alone, he has written over 500 letters to government officials on behalf of voting for or against certain bills before Congress. He will need some assistance to defer costs as all of his work is volunteer.

-----Original Message-----
From: ChipnClara@aol.com <ChipnClara@aol.com
To: undisclosed-recipients:; <undisclosed-recipients:;
Date: Thursday, July 22, 1999 12:20 PM
Subject: Study: Putting More People in Prison Can Increase Crime

(What had previously been a suspicion seems to be shaping up as a fact. Building more prisons may be good for corporate America, but it obviously is not in the best interests of our society. ~ClaraT)

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/chronicle/archive/1999/07/22/MN90

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron D. McCall - Alabama Prison Project <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Date: Wednesday, July 28, 1999 4:20 PM
Subject: Fw: [patrickcrusade] This Is Not About US!! Hear their Voices!

Charles is from Cleveland, Ohio. He heads up Prison Inmate Network Services [a group that tries to provide communication with prisoners who have no one].

Sherry

-----Original Message-----
From: Charles Sparks <advocate@pennpals.org
To: 'Taoss' <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Monday, July 26, 1999 10:48 PM

Dear Taoss,

You are correct in the intentional design to dumb-down Americans. The pass time of reading books for self enrichment has been slowly dismantled through media diversions and substandard education. It occurred to me one day that illiteracy is the ultimate form of censorship. No book ever need burn, history does not need to be re-written, secrets do not need to be hidden in order to maintain obscurity.

I applaud your efforts in the Alabama Restorative Justice Conference. Nothing great has ever been accomplished by being timid. The idea of expanding the concept of restorative justice beyond the prisons is bold but essential if it is to be meaningful. Somehow, someway I will manage to be there if for no other reason than to add one more body to your numbers and to witness first hand the birth of a new era in government of the people by the people.
Charles

Prison Inmate Services Network
Because we're all in this together
http://www.pennpals.org

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Monday, July 26, 1999 1:20 PM

Our demise is by design. Many things have come into play since the inception of the destruction of the US Constitution. The first thing that had to happen was to "dumb-down" Americans, beginning with the children of the 50's and 60's. When you speak of reading books to people, they get a sort of glazed-over look about them. Books? You mean stop watching television, sit quietly and "read"? Many can't because they graduated grammar and high schools without being to read. Government tyranny is only possible when the populous is ignorant. An educated public is a lethal danger to a government that desires oppression over liberty.

I'm on the Steering Committee for the Alabama Restorative Justice Conference, which is actually an International Conference to be held in Alabama - a perfect place because of Alabama's notorious history of oppression. The conference is scheduled for 23, 24 & 25 June 2000. Final details are being worked out as we speak and I'll continue to keep everyone informed so that public participation, with BIG-named speakers, will be in volumes we haven't seen in the past. The purpose of the RJ Conference will be to "educate" the public as to what Restorative Justice actually is, how is will reduce crime everywhere and give back Criminal Justice to the communities where it belongs. It does not belong in the hands of government and never did. The "dumped-down" Americans gave this away to government, out of (1) laziness, (2) fear, and (3) ignorance.

It's time to get out powers of "We The People" back and this conference will be one opportunity, of many others being worked on today, for the downfall of the Injustice system in America. I hope you will take interest in the upcoming RJ Conference, mark your calendars now. More information to come as details are worked out.

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron D. McCall - Alabama Prison Project <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Date: Wednesday, July 28, 1999 5:42 PM
Subject: Fw: [patrickcrusade] Economy of Lies

Elayna A. Monts will be coming from Atlanta, Georgia. She is the Executive Director of The Real Illumination on the Prison Population (TRIPP) www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/1526
Isaiah 61:1

Sherry Swiney

-----Original Message-----
From: Shavsha <shavsha@parkave.net
To: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 8:07 AM
Subject: Re: [patrickcrusade] Economy of Lies

Sherry,

Where and when is this meeting supposed to take place...........Since I am moving to the Atlanta area I may be interested in going

----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Monday, July 26, 1999 8:13 PM
Subject: Re: [patrickcrusade] Economy of Lies

Bill,

I've sent this diatribe and most valuable set of articles to a few political, constitutionalists, and patriot groups. Most of them have woken up and know these things. I want to make this Alabama Restorative Justice Conference the largest anyone has seen in years and years. The People need to take back government, as it was initially designed to be and I think, if done properly, the RJ Conference here in the heart of corruption [Alabama] can be a catalyst for that. At least that's what I'm working toward happening. If we can accomplish educating the Public [the People] with truth, letting them know that Criminal Justice belongs in the hands of Communities, where there is actual equity for all [victim, offender, families and communities alike], many good things will come of this: (1) people incarcerated can become productive citizens again, lending to the enhancement of creativity in the community, (2) victims, to the best possible, can become whole again through restitution of the offenders, (3) education of the children will serve to enlighten them, they are our future judges, correctional officers, police officers, attorneys, governors, senators, businessmen/women, etc., (4) rehabilitation programs will help drug addicts who wish to rid themselves of the burden of being addicted so they too have an opportunity to live fruitful and productive lives, (5) families will not be torn apart by the prison industry and children will not be orphaned and doomed to live on welfare or in other state institutions because they have no homes, (6) the death penalty shall cease, (7) the prison industry shall collapse.

None of these things are going to happen in American Society until the Public is educated. I think the Alabama RJ Conference is a perfect start for this, and if we can have a gathering of "We The People" from Alabama and all the rest of the Nation, and people from other countries [many have already committed themselves for this event], the news media and government officials will have no choice but to listen, to publish, and to help promote the idea of Restorative Justice as the only thing that makes sense in today's world. Maybe you can help me spread the word throughout your circle of friends and associates.

Blessings,
Taoss

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill <earthworks1@ij.net
Date: Sunday, July 25, 1999 11:50 PM

Economy of Lies

The cost of enforcing the illegal prohibition of hemp and marijuana has been phenomenal. This cost has become a veritable pork barrel by which elitist politicians, at the behest of their elite owners, are able to abscond with huge amounts of the publics money, to enforce special interest laws that benefit only them and their industries. Monopolistic and dynastic characteristics epitomize industry's goals as far as fair competition is concerned. Fuels, Materials, pharmaceuticals, and recreational drugs (Budweiser: King of drugs) have been sewn up tight, with legislation and its attendant law enforcement keeping the lid and cuffs on for their bosses, the ultra-rich. Billions of dollars of the peoples moneys have been spent to secure monopolies that act directly against the interests of the public, as concerns business and fair competition. Years have been lost and gargantuan chunks of productivity thrown to the wayside, while huge conglomerates tighten the collar, nay, noose, to the point of strangulation. To enforce these laws of monopoly huge prison industries have been spawned, to incarcerate those who would have the colossal audacity to compete with big business on its own terms. Most times examples are made of the small fry "Criminals", fodder for the fear machine of television, which A) is NOT a press, and B) is owned by the very interests who wish to lock down opportunity and fair competition. Individual states are right now introducing action to sue for damages against tobacco. They say that the medical expense incurred by tobacco users warrants this, and they mean to recoup the losses of the monopolistic Federal Reserve Insurance Interests.

My question is this. Once it is shown how badly Americans have been ripped off as far as fair competition in the marketplace is concerned, which means ever since hemp and its products and byproducts were illegally made illegal, and the beneficence of this crop is once again realized as an alternative to fuels and materials production; once the inmates who are serving time for using this natural substance as a recreational drug (mostly as an alternative to the very debilitative alcohol) get released from jail, who is going to sue government for all the lost time and lives spent in jails that were created for no other reason than to restrict fair trade in America? Who? The reason marijuana has not become re-legal so far is because government understands only too well the mistake that was made when they capitulated to William Hearst, and the Duponts and the Mellons when those apes railroaded hemp illegality through the law system by using yellow journalism scare tactics. They have been able to enforce the conditioning through television, but Americans are not really stupid and are waking up. So who's going to pay us back the money that was stolen from us? Where is the money going to come from? Who will pay to tear down the prison

"INDUSTRY", which is still being used to restrict fair trade in American markets and the World, and who will pay to have them converted to useful and productive institutions, instead of the holding pens for those who have challenged the elitist criminals in control now? WHO? The lock down is so thorough that surveillance has become the norm among the elite who need every advantage they can lay their hands on, because people really are waking up from their television induced fear/hysteria. Prisons no longer need to be locked buildings and cells. It is possible, and has been well exercised by the super powerful, to make prisoners of anyone, at anytime, by controlling them through surveillance. Look at what is available as far as surveillance equipment is concerned, versus countersurveillance equipment. Look at the cost and understand, KNOW that the devices are restricted to only those of upper echelon means. The Goddess Columbia is dying, has been dying ever since she was raped and left bleeding in the gutter at the beginning of this century. But there are those to avenge her, and as ugly as her downfall was, the downfall of the perpetrators of lies and special interests will be AT LEAST that horrible when it happens.

10/9/98

Economy of Lies, Part II 5/1/99

ANYONE WHO CALLS TRUTH TERROR IS A LIAR.

In a very real way we are, right now, standing in The House That Crack Built. We have become a product of certain "Controlled Conflict", namely The War On Drugs, which is itself a product of Hegellian thought which capitalizes on all aspects of a predetermined situation. We The People have been warred upon, and truthfully, most don't even realize it. Many think it only happens to other people. And nothing is farther from the truth. As a nation we have ALL been warred upon, and we have become the greatest economic scapegoats of all time. Our currency is corrupt, inflation is rife but hidden, a possible cataclysm of dire proportions is right around the corner, while no one in government, the caretakers of the people, is answerable for it; and in the meantime, legal drugs like alcohol and tobacco are not just available, BUT ADVERTISED, while the prisons are full of nonviolent pot smokers.

ANYONE WHO BEATS A DRUG TEST IS A LIAR.

We lie to ourselves and say its what we must do to obtain a working wage, all the while knowing that the testing itself is wrong anywhere freedom is valued. The logical conclusion here? It seems that a majority have for some reason forsaken their freedom. It seems that many do not find their freedom valuable enough to fight for. To paraphrase a great maker, Ben Franklin, Those who would sacrifice a little Liberty for a little security, deserve neither.

ANYONE WHO SAYS ALCOHOL AND TOBACCO ARE NOT DRUGS IS A LIAR.

The Illegal Prohibition of Cannabis/Hemp has become special interests most lucrative money pot ever. Huge industries within medicine, law, fuels, materials, and recreational drugs hinge on this illegal illegality of cannabis/hemp. This is the main reason it has been classified as a dangerous drug. The entire economy of the whole last century is founded on malicious and ignorant lies.

ANYONE WHO SAYS TELEVISION HAS NOT BEEN USED AS A FEAR
MACHINE BY WHICH TO CONTROL THE PEOPLE, IS A LIAR.

A lot of popular media, and monopoly television, has become a running commercial for special interests in government and big business. Fear Is The Product They Push.

ANYONE WHO SAYS WE HAVE A GOVERNMENT BY, OF, AND FOR THE
PEOPLE IS A LIAR!

A stark and meaningful departure from the fairness and efficiency of simplicity became effected in Americas Government since the day religious ideals, morals that needed enforcement, were first enacted as law. Get religion OUT of government. The need to strive BACK, to a government by, of, and for the people, has never been more critical.

ANYONE WHO SAYS THAT MARIJUANA IS ILLEGAL BECAUSE OF ITS
PSYCHOACTIVE PROPERTIES IS A LIAR.

Huge monopolistic and dynastic industries have been built upon a foundation of misappropriation, a foundation whose cornerstones are the fuels, materials, pharmaceuticals and recreational drug industries, all direct benefactors of the illegal prohibition of cannabis hemp. Numismatic profits become funneled to powers ever more narrow, ever more elite, and society becomes lopsided, in very dangerous ways.

ANYONE WHO DOES NOT TELL THE FULL ENTIRE TRUTH WHILE REPORTING THEIR EARNINGS, IS, BY LAW, A LIAR. Don't get caught cheating on your income tax, or you will be punished as a liar.

The point of all this talk about lying is to show that lying has become virtually inescapable while existing in America today. The food on Plate imperative has made it a seemingly necessary evil. To once again paraphrase another writer, this time Arthur Hailey: "People have become callused to lying. We have become accustomed to being lied to and deceived. In the recent past we have been lied to by our presidents, other, lesser government officials and politicians, business, industry. Lied to by employers, by Unions. Lied to in Advertising. Lied to in financial transactions, including the status of stocks and bonds, stockholder reports, and "Audited" corporate statements. Lied to at times---through bias or omission--by communications media. The list is endless. Deception has been piled on deception until lying---or, at best, distortion and failure to make full disclosure---has become a way of life.

Oh What Have We Become?

The psychological ramifications of this Economy of Lies amounts to Warfare, pure and simple. When we are put in a position where deception becomes the major or ONLY tool for success you can rest assured this is engineered. That well known psycho-warfare technique of "Controlled Conflict" rears its ugly head again. What greater controlled conflict than an Economy of Lies? Unless it is an economy of lies wherein WAR, say, a DRUG WAR, is declared, and firmly embedded in the public psyche? We have become PREY, and for the perpetrators, it does work. These perps are criminals of the worst type, and I entreat everyone here to begin thinking along these lines. The loss of our Liberties to the forces who wish to enslave us amounts to holocaust erosion of the Peoples Power. Only through solidarity will we be able to overcome, and reverse
this process, which is eating America Alive. NO MORE LIES! Thanks for your time.
Bill Gallagher
luxefaire.com

ALABAMA RESTORATIVE JUSTICE CONFERENCE 23, 24 & 25 JUNE 2000 - watch for
updates.

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron D. McCall - Alabama Prison Project <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Cc: Derryn Eroll Moten <moten@fas.harvard.edu; Renee Middleton <middlre@groupwise1.duc.auburn.edu; Donnel Brown <donnelb@netscape.net; John V. Wilmerding <jvw@together.net; Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Thursday, July 29, 1999 4:02 PM
Subject: William B. Moffitt - NACDL

Aaron,

I think it would be a good idea to invite William B. Moffitt to the RJ conference. He sounds like he's be a dynamic speaker.

Sherry

-----Original Message-----
From: Candyce J. Hawk <cjhawk@owt.com
Date: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 3:56 PM
Subject: [patrickcrusade] NACDL

This news release from the director of the NACDL---

For More Information:

Bess Bezirgan, Public Affairs Director
(202) 872-8600 ext. 228, media@nacdl.com

First African-American President in 25 Years

New Criminal Defense Lawyers' President Decries "Gutting" of Citizens Rights

Washington D.C. (July 21, 1999) -- An unsettling political climate which "tramples on the constitutional rights of Americans, regardless of their innocence, and which ignores legitimate alternatives to incarceration" has made the work of criminal defense lawyers "more difficult and more essential than ever", said William B. Moffitt, incoming president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL).

Moffitt will be sworn in as NACDL's new president this week as the association gathers for its annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

Moffitt is only the second African-American to hold this position in NACDL's 40-year history. "As a society, we must do a better job as protectors of civil rights and as ensurers of due process for all Americans," he said.

Moffitt, a partner with the Washington D.C. law firm of Asbill, Junkin & Moffitt, has a well-earned reputation as a distinguished criminal defense attorney. He specializes in a variety of practice areas including white collar defense and criminal trial and appellate litigation. An inspired and acclaimed lecturer, Moffitt speaks throughout the country on psychological issues associated with criminal conduct as well as civil rights and racial inequality within the criminal justice system.

In a recent high-profile case, Moffitt served as counsel for Michael Abbell, a former high-ranking Justice Department official accused of engaging in a major drug-trafficking conspiracy with the Cali drug cartel. Previously, Moffitt represented William Aramony, former head of the United Way who was indicted for embezzlement and represented the colorful extremist Lyndon LaRouche. He was also involved in the defense of alleged Libyan terrorists.

He is a member of the faculty of the prestigious National Criminal Defense College in Macon, Georgia and is listed in Best Lawyers in America. Moffitt has served on NACDL's board of directors since 1989.

Moffitt, a native of New York, is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma. While there, he was elected student body president in 1970, the first African-American student to hold that office. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, Moffitt was an active participant in the civil rights movement. This experience propelled him to seek a larger role rallying against a fundamentally flawed and unfair legal system. Shortly afterward, he received his J.D. from American University's Washington College of Law.

In 1996, Moffitt testified before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights regarding the draconian three strikes legislation and how it unfairly affects minorities. He also testified on behalf of NACDL at the Clarence Thomas hearings in opposition to Thomas's nomination to the Supreme Court. He is an outspoken critic of the Clinton Administration for its contributions to a criminal justice system that has institutionalized racial unfairness and inequality and its evisceration of the constitutional rights of all Americans.

"The new millennium brings with it unique challenges to our nation's criminal justice system," Moffitt said. "It is an honor and a privilege for me to steward NACDL across the century threshold to deal with critical injustices facing us in the years ahead." # # #

NACDL is the preeminent organization in the United States advancing the mission of the nation's criminal defense lawyers to ensure justice and due process for persons accused of crime or other misconduct. A professional bar association founded in 1958, NACDL's more than 10,000 direct members -- and 80 state and local affiliate organizations with another 28,000 members -- include private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, active U.S. military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness within America's criminal justice system.

National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL)
1025 Connecticut Ave. NW, Ste. 901, Washington DC 20036
www.criminaljustice.org / www.nacdl.org
(202) 872-8600 / FAX(202) 872-8690 / assist@nacdl.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron D. McCall - Alabama Prison Project <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Date: Thursday, July 29, 1999 9:08 AM
Subject: Fw: [patrickcrusade] Statistics from Bureau of Prisons

Aaron,

Perhaps you can use this information for the conference???

Sherry

-----Original Message-----
From: Candyce J. Hawk <cjhawk@owt.com
Date: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 9:24 PM

From the Bureau of Prisons Website (inmate statistics):

CITIZENSHIP

United States: 91,137 (70.3%)
Mexico: 18,104 (13.9%)
Colombia: 4,407 (3.4%)
Cuba: 2,945 (2.3%)
Other/Unknown: 13,085 (10.1%)

So we have ~38,500 people in US Federal BOP facilities who are not even Americans! Look at all like a drug war thing to you? We know about the Cuban-Murial people, but look at the others too. The non-US citizen prisoners cost US Taxpayers roughly $1,155,000,000 a year to house.

TYPE OF OFFENSE (calculated for those with offense-specific information available)

Drug Offenses: 60,062 (58.6%)
Robbery: 8,424 (8.2%)
Firearms, Explosives, Arson: 9,266 (9.0%)
Extortion, Fraud, Bribery: 5,347 (5.2%)
Property Offenses: 5,892 (5.8%)
Violent Offenses: 2,452 (2.4%)
Immigration: 6,377 (6.2%)
Continuing Criminal Enterprise: 674 (0.6%) Janet Reno should fall
into this category
White Collar: 730 (0.7%)
Courts or Corrections: 592 (0.6%)
National Security: 76 (0.1%)
D.C. Offenses 876 (0.8%)
Sex Offenses 801 (0.8%)
Miscellaneous: 984 (1.0%)

These numbers sicken me totally! The US has gone insane. Don't the sheeple even look at this stuff?

INMATES BY RACE

White: 75,129 (58.0%)
Black: 50,206 (38.7%)
Asian: 2,230 (1.7%)
Native American: 2,113 (1.6%)

Blacks comprise on 28% of the US population but are incarcerated at almost 39%. Native Americans should NOT even be in BOP facilities since it's a violation of the Treaties!

STAFF BY RACE/ETHNICITY

White (Non-Hispanic): 20,428 (66.4%)
African American: 6,140 (20.0%)
Hispanic: 3,131 (10.2%)
Asian: 553 (1.8%)
Native American: 452 (1.5%)
Other: 25 (0.1%)

And, of course, the lion's share of guards are white! And somebody said that slavery was abolished in the US!

Candy
--
---------------------------------------------
Visit BigSky Software on the Net at:
http://users.owt.com/loading/bigsky/
---------------------------------------------

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron D. McCall - Alabama Prison Project <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Date: Thursday, July 29, 1999 11:28 PM
Subject: Fw: [patrickcrusade] [Fwd: [smashthestate] Torture In The American Gulag]

Aaron,

I apologize for inundating you with news articles and speeches by others, but this guy - Tom Cahill, President of Stop Prison Rape - would be very valuable at the RJ Conference, I believe. When you have a few free moments, please read his writeup and you'll see what I mean. We cannot claim Restorative Justice for all without speaking out for the crimes that are used as management tools inside the prisons everywhere, including at Holman where rape is rampant and daily witnessed by many who will not speak out because they would be hurt even more. Most just lose their minds and become institutionalized because they have no other way to cope. This must stop and I think Restorative Justice for all is one way to begin that process.

Happy reading....

Sherry

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill <earthworks1@ij.net
Date: Thursday, July 29, 1999 2:35 PM

Pubdate: Summer 1999 (Issue 10)
Source: Alternatives for Cultural Creativity (OR)
Copyright: 1999 Get Real Inc.
Contact: getreal@navicom.com
Fax: 503 315-8260
Address: P.O. Box 1086, Salem OR 97308
Website: http://www.getrealinc.com
Author: Tom Cahill, www.spr.org

TORTURE IN THE AMERICAN GULAG

Sexual Assault Of Prisoners In The U.S.A. Is Being Grossly Exacerbated By The 'War On Drugs'

Sigmund Freud and the Wright brothers were contemporaries at the turn-of-the-century. In the field of aeronautics, we have placed men on the moon and brought them back alive three decades ago. Yet in the field of psychology, we've hardly scratched the surface in understanding the human mind. Just one example of misplaced values is the way the wealthiest and most powerful nation in the world treats its prisoners.

One of the most unique gardens in the world is located in northern California and though few people visit, the garden is well tended.

Scattered among the flowers and bushes are toys - a stuffed unicorn here, a tiny windmill there, a plastic creature with a trace of a smile stands propped among some early Spring daffodils. And painted on the rocks all about the garden are the names, ages and hometowns of children and the dates they were kidnapped, raped, and/or murdered.

On one large, rock is clearly printed in white paint, "For a brief time 'an angel rested here.' Polly Hannah Klaas."

This hallowed ground is where the body of the pretty, forever-12-year-old was found in 1993 and is now called "Polly's Garden and The Memorial for All Children."

On a recent visit, I sat awhile on one of the benches, overwhelmed with sadness, mental portraits of my own grandchildren, and total incredulity. I searched for an answer to how a man, who might have been a father himself, could kidnap a child out of the warmth and safety of her own home, then rape and murder her.

I also sought an answer to why the United States' with its immense criminal justice system; all its great universities and think tanks; and its legions of psychiatrists, psychologists, sociologists, criminologists and spiritual leaders - doesn't seem to care enough about why people like Richard Allen Davis commit heinous crimes such as the murder of young Polly Klaas.

A freshly painted rock in Polly's Garden mocks our feeble efforts to prevent such horror; "Clarissa Ernst. Age 8. Another child victim. Her body found near Shasta Lake in California, Mar. 26, 1999."

There are clues to the mind-set of killers like Davis. But a public blinded by vengeance and swayed by self-serving politicians discounts these clues as "excuses."

For decades the public has voted for ever harsher punishment with lessening efforts toward prevention - as if knowing why people torture others is insignificant. It is crucially important for us to understand that rape is torture - the infliction of severe physical and/or emotional pain as punishment and/or coercion.

In his trial, it was passed over lightly that Richard Allen Davis was himself sexually tortured earlier in life. Speaking from personal experience and fifteen years of research, I suggest that this is a very important clue to why Davis sexually-tortured and killed a 12-year-old girl.

Rape Trauma Syndrome

Rape is crazy-making. It may be the ultimate humiliation, with very serious and long-lasting psychic damage to the victim as well as to close loved ones who are secondary victims. Rape of women and the sexual abuse of children in our society are well known and a national scandal. But there is another form of rape in our society that receives virtually no attention by our media, our politicians, our public at large. The eerie absence of social consciousness on this issue has a sinister match in the enormity of the social problem created by it. I am speaking of the rape of male prisoners and the very dangerous and expensive repercussions for all society that result from this practice.

Many prison rape survivors become rapists themselves in a demented attempt to regain what they think of as their "lost manhood." If upon release, these prisoner rapists and survivors-turned-rapists continue this particular cycle of violence, might they not victimize women as easier and preferred prey? If so, we may have identified a major root cause for the escalating rape rate of women in free society. Survivors are often walking, breathing time bombs.

Some prison rape victims retaliate by murdering their rapists, receiving added years to their sentence. Another outcome of prison rape is suicide. Researchers have found that suicide is the leading cause of death behind bars. Sexual harassment is the leading cause of prisoner suicide. Yet another consequence is disease. Hepatitis-C and AIDS spread by prisoner rape can be a death sentence. An Ohio man contracted AIDS from rape in jail and infected his wife who bore two children who in turn tested HIV positive (Associated Press, Jan. 6, 1988).

Severe psychosis is the most common outcome of prisoner rape. Sexual assault can often break a prisoner's spirit without even breaking his skin, resulting in shame, rage and all the actions related to these emotions. With some people, just the threat of sexual assault can induce rape trauma syndrome which is similar to post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Researchers have found that it takes an average of ten years for a woman to heal from rape and that many male rape survivors never heal because of pressures placed on men that are only beginning to be understood. The rape of male prisoners is especially destructive in that they are usually gang-raped.

In the advanced stages of rape trauma syndrome, a survivor's mood often
swings between deep depression and rage. Prisoner rape may be the
quickest,
most cost-effective way of producing a sociopath or, in Richard Allen
Davis's case, a psychopath. The fact, according to researchers, that most
men on death row were sexually abused earlier in life should come as no
surprise. Indeed, it is a clue that we in free society ignore at our
peril.

Dr. James Gilligan, psychiatrist and director of the Center for the Study of Violence at Harvard Medical School, has discovered that shame is the "deadly emotion." "It works to deaden the feelings of being human...Shame a petty criminal in prison and you may get a serial murderer after his term has been served." (Violence; Our Deadly Epidemic And Its Causes, Dr. James
Gilligan, 1996).

A Monstrous Crime

While I was on a speaking tour in Texas for Amnesty International in February, 1999, I met the parents of a prisoner who confirmed my suspicion that John William King was most probably sexually assaulted in prison a few years earlier. King, you may recall, was the young, white man recently convicted and sentenced to be executed for dragging to death a black man last year in Jasper, Texas. This prisoner, once confined with King, told his parents that King was probably gang-raped by members of the Crips, a nationwide gang of blacks. King was just an average, Texas, good ole boy, redneck racist - not a particularly mean one - when he first arrived in prison, the prisoner reported. But soon afterward, King was "turned out" (raped) and turned vicious.

One of King's court-appointed attorneys, Brack Jones, was quoted by The Dallas Morning News, Feb. 19, 1999, as having said, "Something...obviously happened to him (King) in the penitentiary." In news accounts, including that of Time for March 8, 1999, words like "attacked," and "assaulted" were used to describe what may have happened to King at the Beto 1 Prison Unit in Texas several years ago. But no account that I read or heard until my trip to Texas in February ever mentioned sexual assault which is a big step up the ladder of violence.

* In 1985, I received an unsigned memo from the FBI that included the following official definition: "By the Uniform Crime Reporting definition, the victim of forcible rape is always female...Sex attacks on males could be classified as aggravated assaults or other sex offenses, depending on the extent of injury." I find it interesting that King was reportedly "assaulted. " In effect, 'rape' of male prisoners by other male prisoners does not exist...officially, it's called "assault."

The prisoner in Texas refuses to go public with his information for fear of reprisal by prisoners and/or guards. But any psychoanalyst knowledgeable about rape trauma syndrome or torture syndrome should be able to verify the prisoner's claim by examining King. If the claim is indeed true, I charge that voters in general, and the criminal justice system in particular, share some responsibility for the brutal torture-murder of James Byrd Jr., as well as the sexual torture of John William King. As it is, King gets the death penalty while the criminal justice system that made him a killer is never even indicted.

The major media is negligent for not having dug a lot deeper into King's motivation. Here we have two stories of sexual misconduct, "Monicagate" and the issue of prisoner rape. Both are national scandals. The more titillating and glamorous story gets overplayed by the media. Guess which one has been underplayed since the first recorded prisoner rape in the US in 1826?

"...my country has betrayed me."

In 1968, I was editor of the alternative newspaper Inferno, in San Antonio, Texas. I was arrested for civil disobedience and placed in a crowded cell with thirty prisoners, most of them confined for violent crimes. Almost half of them were black and the other half Hispanic. There were three whites, two of whom cowered in the back of the cell. The remaining white became ringleader of the action. The prisoners had all been moved there just hours before me and the two rival factions had been building up steam to go at each other. In the parlance of prison-speak, this was known as a "gorilla cage," a cell specially arranged for a "turning out party" in which the prisoners would bend some unfortunate candidate like a rubber tire. Later, I learned the prisoners had been told by a guard that I was a child molester and they'd get an extra ration of Jello if they "took care of me." I was placed into this racial tinderbox, a clean-cut, well-dressed, white man, obviously ignorant of life behind bars. I wore glasses and spoke funny, too.

After the attack, I learned from my cellies how it had all been orchestrated. My FBI files (available via the Freedom of Information Act) indicate the Bureau may have set me up to be "neutralized" this way because of my anti-Vietnam war activities. What better way to deal with a political troublemaker than rape in prison? The victim is usually silenced by his or her own trauma and shame.

Since finding these things out, I've never had ill feelings for my rapists - but I still haven't forgiven my country. I'm working on it though because I understand the spiritual necessity and healing power of forgiveness. Whether the FBI was involved or not, my country set up the conditions for my rape and torture. I cared enough about this country and its actions to be arrested for civil disobedience? and I was repaid in a terrible currency.

I May Be Crazy but I'm Not Insane

As a prison rape survivor, I'm absolutely certain I would not be reporting on prisoner rape if not for the feminist movement that brought the subject of rape out of the closet. I'm sure I'd be in a mental hospital or, more likely, prison, since that's where many emotionally disturbed people seem to end up these days. Rape is a human issue. This is something I've tried to communicate to feminists for more than a decade, but, for the most part, their attitude seems to be possessive, that rape is a woman's issue. The shocking truth may be that far more men than women are raped in America each day - period.

In 1984, I fasted for two months to bring media attention to the issue of prisoner rape and obviously to my own pain. The San Francisco Chronicle interviewed me at length in my camper parked outside the gates of San Quentin.

I wanted badly for the story of prisoner rape to appear in a major national newspaper. After waiting two weeks, I figured it wasnít going to be printed, so I went to the Chronicle to find out why. Hoping for the best but expecting a brush-off, I brought a hammer along. I planned, if necessary, to smash a computer monitor because (1) I wanted to finish my fast, one way or other, in jail to make it that much more difficult for society to continue to ignore this barbarism. And (2), if I survived, I wanted to be able to afford to make restitution if I chose to.

Immediately after identifying myself on the phone in the lobby, the reporter upstairs told me he knew about me and rudely hung up. I selected one of the plate glass doors to make my statement. First I went outside, assumed the lotus position and among other things, I asked the door for forgiveness. I then rose with difficulty, put the hammer through the door, and resumed the lotus position, waiting for the police

As you can tell by now, I am crazy. The Veteran's Administration agrees and in 1987 awarded me a 100 percent, non-service-connected disability pension for PTSD. I am crazy. I suffer from depression, rages, flashbacks, paranoia, multiple personalities, and sexual dysfunction, to name some of my symptoms of rape trauma syndrome. But I'm not insane. I know the difference between right and wrong and I'm no danger to myself or others. This is more than I can say for many of those who make the law, interpret the law, and enforce the law.

For me to finish my own healing process, I need this barbarism to end, or to at least be greatly minimized. As president of SPR, Inc., every day I hear the screams for help or the weeping pain of new victims and old survivors.

The War on Drugs and Prisoner Rape as a 'Management Tool'

I submit that the war on drugs never, ever had anything to do with public health. From its beginning in 1968, it was Richard Nixon's scheme to politically neutralize young men of color and the predominately white counterculture of which I am a long-time member. And like most wars, it's been about political and economic expedience. The war on drugs is a civil war against America's poor. As in any war, in the name of national security, civil rights are suspended and atrocities are committed. And since more than half of the men, women and children locked-up in America are confined for drug-related crimes (a majority of them non-violent and victimless crimes), they should be more correctly called "political prisoners." This is why I use the word gulag, the old Soviet term for a prison system filled with political prisoners.

Reagan greatly escalated Nixon's war on drugs, doubling the prison population, thus making the American gulag the biggest in the world. Bush doubled it again, and, for over a decade, the US has had more prisoners per capita than any other country in the world. California provides a telling example: even though new prison spending has outstripped new colleges by 19 to 1, the state predicts that all of its prisons will be filled to capacity by April of 2001.

America is feeding its voracious prison/industrial complex with this spurious War On Drugs. Now, in 1999, according to Amnesty International, conditions in America's correctional institutions have gotten so bad that AI launched its "Rights for All Campaign," focusing on human rights violations in the US criminal justice system.

The appalling conditions behind bars are scarcely conceivable in free society. Statistics do not provide a clear picture of these conditions, but they can begin to establish a useful perspective. For instance: In 1995, each day, 83,000 adult male prisoners were raped in US correctional institutions, according to a report by Stephen Donaldson, of SPR. Donaldson's statistics have yet to be challenged by the Bureau of Justice Statistics. In fact Donaldsonís statistics may be so conservative, he may be off by half, according to Dr. Warren Farrell in The Myth of Male Power. And according to Carl Weiss and David Friar in their book Terror In The Prisons, published way back in 1974, "More men than women are raped every year in America. They are raped in prison."

Not only prison officials, but the entire criminal justice system has a vested interest in keeping this barbarism covered-up. Why? Because they use prisoner rape as what is called a "management tool."

Police officers and prosecuting attorneys use the threat of prisoner rape to coerce suspects into plea bargaining. Ex-prisoners who know what to expect behind bars are especially vulnerable to these threats.

Police - and guards - use the threat of prisoner rape to coerce suspects and prisoners into becoming informers.

I believe the criminal justice system has become a vast criminal conspiracy that preys mostly on the poor while extorting money out of middle-class taxpayers through the use of misinformation such as all the rhetoric about drugs.

Politics and Prison Rape

Who is being raped behind bars? It's certainly not the big drug lords or the vicious thugs in for murder and assault. Itís mostly the young, non-violent, first-offenders confined for a little too much pot and too poor to buy their freedom who fit the victim profile. The legislators and judges know all this. It's their job to know.

A few politicians have spoken out. In 1970, in the wake of prison insurrections in our country, we find these comments on record: "The appalling conditions and practices in many of our penal institutions can do more damage to a young person than his use of marijuana," said then New York State Representative Ed Koch before he became Mayor of New York City.

But as Mayor of one of the greatest cities on earth, what did Ed Koch do to end those appalling conditions and practices?

"I think you are absolutely correct as to the consequences for these young men," agreed then Philadelphia District Attorney Arlen Specter, now a Republican senator of Pennsylvania. "Men who got into the prison facilities and who are victims of attack, or who may join in the attack, come out more finely-honed weapons against society than when they went in. Can any of us understand the degradation and hatred a young man must feel when he is released into a community after being raped?" asked Specter.

Yet as a powerful and influential senator now, what is Arlen Specter doing to end the system of prison rape which creates so much degradation and hatred in young men?

Prisoner rape violates two amendments to the US Constitution, the 8th forbidding cruel and unusual punishment and the 13th forbidding slavery. (Many victims of prisoner rape become sexually enslaved by a dominant prisoner and are often forced into prostitution for contraband such as drugs which, in the reality of prison culture, are often smuggled in by guards.) Reactionaries predictably claim that prison rape doesn't exist, complaining that, to the contrary, prisoners are coddled and prisons are too comfortable. Such voices are especially shrill when prison reform activists report on atrocities. (I observe reactionaries to be very selective about what parts of the Constitution they defend. For instance, property rights, "yes," and to hell with human rights.)

Curbing Prisoner Rape

There is one quick, simple and inexpensive solution to at least drastically cut down on prisoner rape and it has been used in San Francisco City/County Jail for more than a decade. I've been jailed there a number of times for civil disobedience and each time I was screened by a male nurse whose job it was to separate the obviously vulnerable prisoners from the obviously
vicious.

So I'd like to thank San Francisco Sheriff Mike Hennessy and his staff for doing the decent thing and contributing to the solution rather than the problem. But it occurs to me, if the solution is so simple, why isn't it more widespread? The extent to which it is not is evidence that SPR's charge is correct, that prisoner rape is indeed used as a management tool.

God Is Truth

Christians say, God is love. But I go along with Gandhi who said "God is truth." Despite having been intimate with perhaps the worst horror of confinement and despite being an emotional cripple as a result, I have long believed my rape in San Antonio thirty years ago was the greatest single lesson and the greatest single blessing of my life to date. It forced meto know myself, as Socrates urged his students. And it knocked me into a higher consciousness, closer to the Great Spirit. From this great lesson and blessing, I remain optimistic that the prophecy of Victor Hugo will one day become a reality: "We shall one day come to look upon crime as a disease. Physicians shall displace judges and hospitals the gallows. We shall pour oil and balm where we formerly applied iron and fire. And evil will be treated with charity instead of in angeróa change simple and sublime. The gentle laws of Christ will penetrate at last into the code and shine through its enactments." It is to this end we work; not just an end to prisoner rape. I rest my case.

----------------

Tom Cahill is a long-time political activist, mainly concerned with issues of justice and the environment. He's been a member of Earth First! Since 1990 and is currently president of Stop Prisoner Rape Inc. Tom lives on the Mendocino Coast of California. He can be reached at PO Box 632, Fort Bragg, CA 95437, or 707/964-0820. www.spr.org

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
To: Aaron D. McCall - Alabama Prison Project <aaron.d.mccall@worldnet.att.net
Date: Sunday, August 01, 1999 6:28 PM
Subject: Alabama Bar Association

Aaron,

I've been doing a little research and came across http://www.alabar.org/ regarding the Alabama Bar Association. There, I read the "President's Page" and I think it would be a good idea to invite Mr. Vic Lott, President, to the RJ Conference. You might wish to take a few moments to browse this web page for additional ideas. On the page for "Pro Bono" rewards there are names mentioned that might be valuable for the RJ Conference as well. Just some thoughts....

Sherry

-----Original Message-----
From: Taoss <taoss@worldnet.att.net
Date: Monday, August 02, 1999 10:56 PM

Sissel brings to us a message about Forgotten Kids. The INjustice system has created countless orphans and welfare children in America. These children do not have a voice at all. P.A.T.R.I.C.K. has a Quilt Project that started about a year ago, before Aaron George was going to unmercifully re-tried in Texas.

Beverly George at that time was working on putting the quilt squares together. Each square was donated by other PATRICK members and each square had a child's name written or stitched in the center of that square. The goal of the PATRICK QUILT was to have it be like the AIDS quilt, to call to the attention of the world, that millions of children are being adversely affected by the INjustice system. Millions of completely innocent children who have no voice.

Well, we wanted them to have a voice, and we thought the QUILT PROJECT was a good way to demonstrate this - for them. For the children of the victims and the incarcerated.

Now, I am heading this up again because we want to display the PATRICK QUILT at the Alabama Restorative Justice Conference on 23, 24 & 25 June 2000.

So..... it's *quilt* time again folks. I don't know if Beverly is available to start stitching again, and I hope a few other PATRICK MEMBERS are available to gather squares, make squares, stitch squares together, and coordinate this effort. But you people are resourceful and I think some of you could think of ideas on how to obtain quilt squares and help make this display happen for the RJ Conference.

Think of it! Think of the impact such a QUILT will have on society. Remember the impact the AIDS quilt had. That's what we are looking for - publicity, getting the word out about the children who are suffering because of the INjustice system - the criminal justice system that's broken.

Bev's got a webpage up and I think you can still get there through Candy's page http://www.owt.com/users/cjhawk/patrick.html

We have almost a year to put this quilt together - so now would be a good time to start. What say you all?

Send your quilt squares to the following address [and pass this message throughout the web]:

Beverly George
P.O. Box 916
Magnolia, TX 77353-0916

Blessings,
Sherry Swiney

----- Original Message -----
From: Sissel <denmark@online.no
Sent: Sunday, August 01, 1999 9:34 PM

Here we have the 900 potential new death row inmates. For those Americans who are so concerned about their tax dollars and own wealth....It could be a better financial approach to invest here.

Sissel

----- Original Message -----
From: Misty A. Tierney <MistyT@COMPUSERVE.COM
To: <ABOLISH@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU
Sent: Sunday, August 01, 1999 9:26 PM
Subject: Forgotten Kids.......

According to an AP article which appeared on the wires today, Portland Oregon has the highest rate per capita of homeless kids than most cities.

Estimation is at 1,800 teens in a city of 500,000.

The Salvation Army sponsored a June 27th "prom night" for these teens as they have for ten years. For one night, kids who are drug addicts, prostitutes, used and abused both before and after they leave home - are given the opportunity to dress up and play "someone else".

"I wouldn't say it changes anybody's life," Noel Richmond (program volunteer) said. "But it creates a positive memory, something to hold on to. And those seeds of memory in our hearts are what make us stronger people."

So folks, while our political parties are at each other's throats, trying to figure out who Clinton's been forking and which parties donated money illegally to which funds, many of our nations' children are dying a little bit more each day. While I've seen people stoning our "government" and the follow-up argument that WE are the government, as part of this "democracy." I'd like to note that no one asked me whether I'd rather see my tax dollars (and yours - to the tune of millions) be wasted on the latest presidential mess or use it to provide much needed resources to programs aimed at giving kids a hand up in this crazy life.

I find it appalling and unacceptable. I just don't know how to go about effectuating change.

Misty A. Tierney/CA
102455.332@compuserve.com
12:26 PM 8/1/99




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