General Prison Talk Discuss More on the Abuse in Florida... in the Prison Related forums; ~*~ DAY ONE ~*~
July 1, 2004
&quot;The courts have clearly established that a prisoner has a first amendment right ...
More on the Abuse in Florida...
~*~ DAY ONE ~*~
July 1, 2004
"The courts have clearly established that a prisoner has a first amendment right to hunger strike in protest of prison conditions. A prison official cannot retaliate against a prisoner for the prisoner’s redressing of grievances. If an official knowingly violates a prisoner’s constitutional right, he loses qualified immunity. The FDOC is being notified through email as well as through request, US mail and this website not to violate the inmate’s constitutional rights." ~Ronald Wayne Clark Jr.
Today is the first day of death row prisoner number 812974 Ronald Wayne Clark's hunger strike. Although he will not eat, he will be drinking water. He is trying to draw our attention to three issues of abuse:
The excessive use of force,
And the chemical agents that are being used so indiscriminately.
FSP CONFIRMATION OF HUNGER STRIKE
The issues are very real but who would would have thought that what goes on in Ronald Clark's neck of the woods affects any of us?
Abuse is a crime no matter who does it to whom. Prison workers must be held to the same laws as everyone else. The point is that we believe ourselves to be 'better than prisoners'. We claim that we put them in prison because they are behaving badly. Which means we cannot encourage nor allow prison workers to behave as badly just because their victims are criminals or the prison workers are no longer different from their prisoners - and we are not what we say we are.
These issues of prisoner abuse do boomerang on every one of us in a number of ways, despite how one may feel about prisoners. Filth encourages diseases. Abuse creates mental problems. Corruption in authority breeds absolute disrespect for authority. Hunger nourishes a survival-at-any-cost mentality, and desperation begets violence.
If prisons don't rehabilitate the people we send to them, every one of us are worse off. Every year, thousands of prisoners are discharged from institutions carrying disease and mental illness. Many of them are shell-shocked and either defeated or enraged, none of which is healthy for any of us. The final costs of mass incarceration can be lowered by taking care of these problems at the core of 'corrections'.
We must use any tool available to encourage, if not compassion, then professionalism, wisdom, and foresight in the prison industry. Such ongoing volatile situations expose everyone to unnecessary danger.
INTERVIEWS ON DAY 1
NOTE: Media may phone Attorneys Randall Berg, Pete Sieger and Larry Spalding for info on the heat issue.
Contact Kay Lee firstname.lastname@example.org ;
Jillian O'Brine email@example.com,
Shirley Clark firstname.lastname@example.org
or Sissel email@example.com for attorneys' contact info.
Radio Interview by Rob Lorie with Shirley Clark for Radio station WMNF in Tampa, Florida (88.5)
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