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Under Lock & Key

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[Culture] [Texas]
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Chicano Rap & Language against Assimilation

I thought to write with respect to your no. 10 issue I received and appreciated very much. In regards to the main topic, hip hop, of which I am no fan, it gave a good insight as how dominant Anglo culture preys on an underclass and or minority group. Although the Anglo culture is the most prevalent in its influences, the capitalists (the Anglo class), have no respect even to its own race when it comes to the dollar sign$.

Having been born in the 50s, and part of the Chicano civil rights movement of the mid 60s and early 70s, my Raza had had enough of the Anglo suppression of our being and culture. What the Anglo race wanted of us through the South West was cultural assimilation, period! It didn't work for the majority of us, with only a few assimilating into an Anglo society. However, it is those few who assimilate that cause me concern, who follow those that went before them in their deliberate knowledge of the Anglo assimilation process.

Prior to my incarceration in 1990 "rap" music was already making itself known in the major metropolitan cities in Texas. As my years of incarceration progressed during the 1990s, I was seeing and hearing a lot of my Raza mimicking the talk (language) of a hip hop culture that was permeating throughout the free world and penal institutions. And that they were not able to speak, much less understand their own language, Spanish (or the more subtle Spanglish, Cali, or Pachuco), caused me great concern in seeing that the culprit of this subtle form of Anglo assimilation was the Anglo capitalist which controls the media, in its effort to destroy any culture other than that of its own.

Although I now see "Chicano" rap originating out of California as a form of pushing back against the Anglo assimilation process, the Anglo capitalists controlling the media has not embraced this form of Chicano "expression" (nor latino "rap" in general). The writer/reviewer of the essay "Hip Hop: Living Culture or Commodity?" did a good job in showing how a capitalist and dominant Anglo society destroys other cultures at all costs. But in having read the essay I didn't see that it addressed that Anglo commercialization of mainstream "hip hop" has an agenda to also destroy ones cultural language as well.

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[Censorship] [California] [ULK Issue 13]
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California Ban on MIM Over... Sort of

A December 13, 2006 memo from then-Director Scott Kernan declared a systemwide ban on all publications from the Maoist Internationalist Movement. The memo misquoted and took out of context statements by MIM to justify the ban. Many comrades soon jumped into action to defend the First Amendment rights of California prisoners and their outside supporters. One comrade took this battle further than anyone else, leading to over 2 years of legal battles that ended in April, 2009.

One administrator claimed there were three banned publishers in California Department of Corrections (CDCR): MIM, Penthouse and Playboy. While MIM had received this high honor of a complete ban, others were facing severe censorship by CDCR as well. In April 2007, Prison Legal News (PLN) settled their suit against CDCR's illegal censorship. The settlement was very strategic on the behalf of the PLN legal team in that it included reforms to CDCR mail policy that affected all of us that had been having problems.

As many of our readers probably know, Prison Legal News was founded and is led by jailhouse lawyers. Their consistent work has won them the ability to recruit street lawyers to their battles. Without the leadership of prisoners and former prisoners, defenders of prisoners' rights in the courtroom are few and far between. Yet, litigating from behind the walls is no easy task, as our California comrade can attest:

"The sole reason for my non-opposal of defendants summary judgment is quite simply that I was unable to litigate the case from my current residence here in the hole. As I stated to you before I was not able to obtain the required legal materials needed to litigate, materials such as a basic copy of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP), the sufficient or suitable case law required, or even sufficient copies, and typing paper.

"As I am in Ad-Seg, most of the required materials stated above are not in this building's possession, or even on the same yard. We must write to B-yard law library for requested legal texts. This is something no one bothered to inform me of 'til just a few weeks ago. Furthermore, the whole process of requesting materials is usually hit or miss in the sense that sometimes we receive our materials, sometimes we don't. Since I'm in the hole, I had to request photocopies of the FRCP. However, due to 'copyright concerns' I did not get it."

In addition to being denied needed legal materials, this comrade was denied an appeal for a lawyer to be appointed to their case. This was particularly relevant in this case where s/he was being denied access to the materials in question because they were deemed a risk to security.

For a year and a half following PLN's victory, supporters of MIM Distributors argued that the ban on MIM mail was not in compliance with the settlement. Finally, in October 2008 the CDCR released their new "Centralized List of Disapproved Publications," a product of the settlement. MIM Distributors is not on this list, and is therefore no longer legally banned in California. It is against CDCR policy for individual prisons to institute bans that are not on this centralized list.

While the final date for additions to the Centralized List was May 1 (and it is updated annually), we have not seen the new list for 2009. Experience seems to indicate that we are still not on it, since those who continue to ban our mail cite outdated documents. Prisons that continue to return mail from MIM(Prisons) unopened are High Desert and the supermax prison, Pelican Bay. Blanket bans seem to require more stringent review by the courts. Therefore, it may be more strategic for the state to avoid blanket bans in the future, thus making lawsuits like the California prisoner's more difficult to carry out.

The good news is most prisons in California no longer have a blanket ban on MIM (those that do are in violation of court orders). This may have more to do with incompetence of the CDCR staff than a strategic approach. But it also means that the censors must now justify their censorship based on the California Code of Regulations, and appeals cannot be rejected out of hand.

For a while, the prisoner who filed suit was the only persyn in h prison who was able to receive Under Lock & Key. We assumed this was to undermine h censorship claims. Yet, after the ban on MIM was officially canceled in October, all of a sudden ULK was also censored to this comrade. When one of our legal supporters wrote to inquire as to why, the Warden cited the overturned ban on MIM. This was as late as March 2009, and the same thing happened in other California prisons. It was not until 6 months after the new list was released that prison administrators acknowledged that MIM Distributors was no longer banned. We have been assured that proper training of mailroom staff has been conducted in a number of California prisons regarding the new banned list. Still, this alleged "incompetence" has led to over 2 years of no contact with many prisoners across California, and added up to uncounted costs in lost and returned mail and printed materials.

Meanwhile, MIM Theory 8: Anarchist Ideal & Communist Revolution was deemed such a threat that the court would not allow the plaintiff to view the magazine alone in h cell to prepare h case. The CDCR legal team even attempted to seal MIM literature from the public because it allegedly posed such a threat to security. In their motion to have the documents sealed, the CDCR also refers to MIM's "anonymity" as a threat to security. It is not clear to us how identities of those working with MIM are relevant to the security of prisons run by CDCR, but we do see anonymity as justified given the history of harassment and intimidation by CDCR's Investigation Unit and the CCPOA of citizens outside of prison. MIM(Prisons) takes these threats very seriously.

On June 29, 2009, the US District Court issued a summary judgment dismissing the claims against CDCR. In the summary judgment the court recognizes our comrade's exposure of the CDCR for misquoting MIM Theory 8, using ellipses as Scott Kernan did in the 2006 memo. Still, the court deferred to the biased judgments of the prison officials, citing Overton v. Bazzetta, 539 U.S. 126, 132 (2003).

The comrade responded by writing,

"I am extremely disheartened by the aforementioned facts. Disheartened, not defeated, yet I see no positive outcome to the civil matter."

S/he goes on to state,

"Once again I am extremely and hopefully apologetic. It was not my intention to have done all this work for the past 3 years just to have it all come to a crashing halt in the period of three months. I have let not just myself and the movement down, but the people as well.

"Not all is bad though. This was certainly a learning experience and I definitely learned a lot for a 7th grade drop-out. I have been inspired to take a paralegal course, after which I will be of better use to MIM and the people."

For this comrade in California, it is certainly natural to feel disheartened, and it is good to hear that you are not defeated. In the imperialist countries, the task of the revolutionary movement is to carry out long legal battles. Mao said this in 1975, and it is still true today. This means that many of us will have to spend long hours learning and applying bourgeois law, while recognizing that the law has class character and is not designed to serve the oppressed. In addition, "legal work" does not just mean in the court room. An important aspect for keeping our work focused and sane is to carry it out as part of a larger movement. This comrade didn't have a victory in court, but h efforts were simultaneous to petitioning of the CDCR, to public education around censorship, to other prisoners filing appeals, and to PLN's own lawsuit. We will face many failures along the way, but these failures become easy to accept when we study and understand the weaknesses of imperialism as a system, and see our strategic role in contributing to ending all systems of oppression.

We commend this comrade's drive to continue legal studies. The more effective each of us become in our work the easier it is for all of us to succeed. Becoming more effective requires studying others' experiences, learning from them and developing strategies as a movement.

In a more recent letter our jailhouse lawyer wrote,

"Some key points I've learned from all of this is that you definitely have to be committed when engaging the oppressors and their legal system. You always have to keep in mind that you are facing seasoned veterans with all the tools and obstacles of the state at their beck and call. It's never going to be easy, just less difficult at times. Long periods of research and study are also essential with these legal battles long before you decide to actually bring your case into the courtroom. You can also never let yourself be discouraged because discouragement is key to the oppressor's victories which in turn establishes precedent making it that much more difficult for us to succeed."

Prison Legal News and the lawyers supporting their work are the exception to the rule. Most of the time it is prisoners, sometimes with little or no formal education, as this comrade can attest to, who must fight these battles in a maze of complicated language and jargon, where you are starting out at a huge disadvantage. That is why it is important to keep in mind what we are dealing with. The u.$. state is an imperialist state. The court is not a just and benevolent god. Mumia introduces his new book Jailhouse Lawyers: Prisoners Defending Prisoners v. the U.S.A. discussing prisoners who have gone mad after years of learning and applying the law only to lose their just cases, or to have them thrown out before even getting a trial. Such outcomes are to be expected for the oppressed under imperialism and this is an important lesson to learn.

To our readers in California, it is more important than ever that you write in to tell us what mail you are receiving from us so that we can build on this struggle. To date, only a handful of people have acknowledged receiving ULK 10 on Hip Hop.


Campaign info:
MIM Banned in CA!
This article referenced in:
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[Medical Care] [Waupun Correctional Institution] [Wisconsin] [ULK Issue 12]
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Prison lax on spread of H1N1

I'm in the Wisconsin prison system at Waupun Correctional Institution. This is a letter concerning one of my fellow prisoners.

You guys already heard about the H1N1 flying around the country. There are 3 prisoners in Waupun Correctional who have confirmed H1N1. Now with my fellow prisoner in particular, he has been sick all day and on 11/6 supposedly the guards called down to HSU and they said they can't do anything about it.

Now this fellow prisoner has been lying on the floor throwing up in a garbage can since 2pm, that I know of (it could have been longer). Second shift comes on at 1:45pm. They checked on him at 2:30pm and that was the last time they checked on him until 4:45pm count. I go get my meds between 3 and 3:30 every day. I went to get my meds and told the 2nd shift Sgt. Congel, and he said they couldn't do anything about it. Now after 4:45pm count the guards pass the mail out and they just walked past his cell without even looking in. I know this because I'm right next door to him.

It's been 15 minutes, 5 to 5:15pm and the guards still didn't come. They are only 40 feet away at the desk. Finally at around 6pm they came and got him and he hasn't returned yet. It is now 9:15pm.

To me this is way wrong, the guards don't do shit about this and they don't care about us! The only way we can catch H1N1 is if a guard brings it into the prison! Is this the way we have to live? Just because we are in prison doesn't mean we aren't human beings. Trust me if there is a lawsuit I'll be the first one on the stand going against these bitches.

This is not justice, all these guards care about are their checks. This does piss me off very much and I wish I could do more.

p.s. My last issue was denied because they said it had gang stuff in it.

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[Environmentalism] [Rhymes/Poetry] [Idaho] [ULK Issue 11]
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It's Here

How much land can be used to create wind farms that produce electricity in an environmentally safe manner providing whole communities with no-cost energy? The same goes for sun farms and even oceanic wave farms. How hard is it to switch to renewable fuel that has zero emission fumes and doesn't require war and invasive surgery on the earth using tools of poor humans dying in the process? Why isn't there a free worldwide health care or poverty prevention plan but there is a multi-billion dollar industry for grown men and womyn's games, music and entertainment? Is a 3-year-old starving less important than a touchdown? Would you rather stare into the eyes of young man happy to cure his cancer or steroid using actors? It's here, the means to alleviate the suffering of the womyn giving birth to a child in half baked sewage water that came out of the local Nike sweat shop's exhaust. It's here, a way that all the inhabitants of mother earth can co-exist with each other and their surroundings instead of being a disease to our planet and each other. It's here, the imperialist capitalist doing his absolute best to lull you into non-action with his constant misdirection from the harsh cold truth. Next time you cheer for your team or nod your head to the radio remember reality is a lot harder to deal with when you're not hypnotized by complacency.

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[Abuse] [Marion County Jail] [Florida]
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Punishment of Pretrial Detainees in Ocala, Florida

I am writing to let you know that Marion County Jail is a modern concentration camp. All prisoners in Marion County Jail are charged two dollars per day for very small portions of food that contain rocks, sticks, and sand, because all the food is grown on a farm that's run by prisoners. We have no canteen to order except coffee, sugar-free Kool-aid and breath mints. We have no TV to watch even though we pay two dollars per day to stay in the jail.

The conditions of confinement in this facility are clearly designed to force innocent people to plead out to get out. Most people contained in this facility cannot make bond because the judge set it extremely high or they have no bond. The pigs of this town fabricate probable cause affidavits, so a lot of people in here are innocent. The U$ department of Injustice has an investigation going about the excessive force and prisoner suicide rate within this facility. We need a lawyer to file a class action lawsuit on behalf of all Marion County Jail prisoners, because it is futile to file grievances. The things that are going on are clearly unconstitutional.

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[Legal] [California] [ULK Issue 13]
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No "Class Actions"

The days of finding relief via the "class action" lawsuit are over. The Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) and countless other rulings have essentially castrated the "class action." The worst part is, under certain protocols, if a class action loses, every person in the "suspect class" is prohibited from filing in the future on similar grounds!

Only a fascist or a moron will file "class actions" because they have been eliminated. The proper methodology is to bury the bastards with litigation from individual litigants. Whatever the issue, rather than "joining forces" officially, we need to coordinate from the periphery. If 20 individuals file relatively similar actions in the same Court, the Court will occasionally attempt to coerce them into becoming a de facto "class." That can be refused by a litigant who wishes to proceed "as a class of one." Failure in this case does not affect other individual litigants. The decision might be harmful, but it cannot completely deflate the opportunity to seek "redress of grievances," as are protected by the First and Fourteenth Amendments.

The only way to fight in a corrupted system is to use those remaining rules that ostensibly still exist and turn them against the persecuting agencies. The only way to win requires seriously thinking outside the box; but doing it with a rationale they're required to accept. If they try and blow smoke up your ass, take it to the next level. To borrow from Churchill's address done at Princeton: "Never give in. Never give in. Never give in..." It doesn't need to be eloquent: it just needs to be.

MIM(Prisons) adds: The PLRA is one way that prisoners are legally stripped of their rights as u.$. citizens. During the first wave of the Prison Movement, class actions were a crucial tool for prisoner activists to fight battles on behalf of all prisoners. The state didn't like that. We wouldn't go as far as this comrade to say that class actions are completely obsolete, but they are now extremely complex and should be brought by a lawyer. Since most of our comrades cannot afford lawyers, class action suits are functionally useless to us.

This comrade is correct that despite the difficulties we face today, we must keep finding ways to fight legal battles until they take all such rights away. And there are still ways for us to work together and work strategically. Issue 13 of ULK will focus on how to do this, so comrades should write in with their ideas.

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[Spanish] [Culture] [Texas]
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Hip Hop en la Esfera de Acción del Estado

Mostrarlos como groseros y depravados...tener miembros detenidos por acusaciones de mariguana. Investigar conflictos personales o animosidades entre ellos. Manda artículos a los periódicos enseñando sus depravaciones. Use narcóticos y el sexo gratis para entrampar...obtener especímenes de sus escrituras. Provocar rivalidades entre los grupos de objetivo que pueden resultar en muerte. Tácticas FBI COINTELPRO documentado a ser usado contra músicos políticos.(1)

Yo sostengo que es malo en cuanto nos concierne si una persona, un partido político, un ejército o una escuela no es atacada por el enemigo, pues en ese caso, eso significaría definitivamente que nos hemos bajado al nivel del enemigo. Es bueno si somos atacados por el enemigo, ya que demuestra que hemos trazado un límite claramente de demarcación entre el enemigo y nosotros. - Mao Zedong. Ser Atacado por el Enemigo no es Algo Malo Sino Algo Bueno (26 de Mayo 1939)

Un indicación del potencial revolucionario de hip hop es la reacción del estado burgués. El verano pasado, policías arrestaron a Paradise Gray del x-clan (clan equis), y el Zulu Nation (Nación de Zulus), quien juego un papel grande en darle forma al hip hop en los primeros años. Arrestaron a Gray mientras que el estaba filmando una demostración contra el alto burguesismo.(2) Paralelizando algunos esfuerzos de Tupac discutidos abajo, Gray esta actualmente trabajando con 1Hood para promover paz entre la nación de juventud oprimida en la ciudad de Pittsburg, PA. No hay nada que el gobierno le tiene más miedo que cuando los oprimidos paran de matarse los unos a los otros.

Mientras que a la cultura popular le gusta ver Reality Rap (Rap en Realidad), ahora conocido como Gangsta Rap (Rap de Gangster), en el comienzo de la corrupción última de hip hop, la verdad es que pioneros Ice-T, NWA, y Tupac estaban desenvueltamente opuestos al estado y recibieron mucho calor por eso. Cancelaron sus conciertos, postergaron sus discos, censuraron sus canciones y se enfrentaron con constante vigilancia y hostigamiento regular.

Mientras que las formas de arte que se originaron en la cultura de hip hop han sido cooptadas por asimilación de los medios de corporaciones para servir al estado mismo, la amenaza potencial de una cultura que se queda con raíces fuertes en las naciones oprimidas sigue. John Potash sacó una documentación con detalles de la historia del estado usando COINTELPRO contra músicos, conectándolos en operaciones contra revolucionarios que precedieron y que frecuentemente los inspiraron. El describe como el NYPD organizó la primera unidad - rap con entrenamientos por COINTELPRO, y luego fueron a entrenar a otros policías metropolitanos por todos lados del país. Su libro se concentra alrededor de la vida y muerte de Tupac Shakur.

El padrastro de Tupac Shakur era, en el pasado, de los Black Liberation Army (Ejército de Liberación de los Negros) y médico revolucionario, que se volvió prisionero de guerra, Mutulu Shakur. El era uno del número de ancianos influyentes en la vida de Tupac mientras que el creció que eran parte del movimiento del Black Power (poder de los negros). En las juntas con Tupac el dice que el empujó a Tupac a que cuestionara y definiera a la tal thug Life (Vida Maleante), que, con el tiempo, ellos hicieron juntos un código de 26 puntos que fue aceptado por los Bloods y Crips, y otros más tarde, en la cumbre de la paz en 1992 en la ciudad de Los Angeles.(3) Esto indució a una operación mayor de contraespionaje fijando como objetivo a los involucrados, Mutulu incluido que ha estado enjaulado en un centro de control federal desde entonces.

Sanyika Shakur, un ex-jefe de los Crips (Azules), era uno que estaba inspirado a sostener estos esfuerzos. El también fue objeto para aislamiento en la sistema de prisión en el estado de California dónde es esta sentado actualmente (tal pacificadores son supuestamente "peor de los peores" que llenan estas celdas de tortura). Así como el señalo, el gobierno tenia razón para estar involucrados por los esfuerzos para unir a los jóvenes Negros y Latinos ya que las organizaciones de las calles de South Central estaban reclutando más gente jóvenes cada año que los cuatro fuerzas armados de los estados unidos combinados.(4)

La investigación detallado de John Potash sobre 2Pac y otros músicos y líderes, enseñan, claramente, conexiones entre operaciones negras por el gobierno y la represión de esos que movilizaron gente oprimida. El papel primario que Tupac juego en la enemistad del "East vs. West" (El este contra El oeste) en la escena del hip hop era irónico después de su trabajo para unir grupos guerreando en Los Angeles. Pero Potash pinta un retrato de manipulación mandado por el estado que llevó a Tupac que a jugar en el plan de ellos.

Potash traza el uso de sexo y drogas para manipular a ambos activistas y músicos como se describe en el documento del FBI citado arriba. El cargo de asalto sexual formulado contra Tupac es un ejemplo de esto.(5) Death Row Records, quien el pinta como un frente del FBI, mantuvo a Tupac nadando en bebidas alcohólicas y marihuana, así como el FBI hizo a su madre, cuando el era un niño, usando a un traficante que se hizo muy cercano a ella. Igualmente, Death Row cambio a Dr. Dre, que una vez canto, "Ey, yo no fumo marihuana o sess porque es conocido hacerle daño a los sesos de un hermano," a una publicidad gigante de marihuana con su solo álbum estreno, "The Chronic". En la década que siguió, el uso regular de marihuana fue aumentado significativamente entre jóvenes Negros y Latinos, con problemas grandes de adicción discapacite, quizás sea el incremento de la potencia de la droga.(6) Hoy, marihuana y bebidas alcohólicas están alabados constantemente por los raperos.

En sus últimos días, Pac estaba sobrio, leyendo Mao y piensando en unir a los negros alrededor del país. Pronto lo mataron y nadien fue acusado con el asesinato aunque en ese momento el estaba observado de cerca por multiple agencias del estado, así como Biggie en el tiempo de su asesinato.

Una lección grande para tomar de "la Guerra del FBI contra Tupac y los Líderes Negros" es que el gobierno tiene una estrategia de neutralizar líderes poténcialas que ellos usan una y otra vez. Para contraatacar esto, activistas necesitan que estar cocientes de las estrategias y formar estrategias para contraatacarlos. Como un individuo, Tupac estaba, fácilmente, manipulado, pero hasta un partido disciplinado como las Panderas Negras fueron manipulados participando en una división similar de costas este contra oeste que se pudo haber evitado. En ambos casos, el FBI tomó una ventaja de las contradicciones internas entre la gente involucrada. Bueno, mientras que estudiar tácticas del FBI es una manera provechoso para defendernos mismos, más importante, tenemos que poner políticas en mando para hacer un movimiento que sea difícil hacer caer fuera de curso.

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[Abuse] [Robertson Unit] [Texas]
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Unsanitary conditions in Texas

I'm a prisoner confined in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. I'm launching this complaint concerning the unsanitary conditions of various areas of the French Robertson Unit in Abilene, Texas.

12 Building segregation recreation yard is the second most unsanitary area of the facility. The urinal is seldom cleaned and always seems to be backed up. The stench resulting from this condition is overwhelming and can be smelled at a distance of at least fifty yards. I have informed the security staff, as well as its supervisor, yet the problem remains unattended. The tables and weight case are also unsanitary, covered with bird droppings and littered with trash. This is an atmosphere that is in violation of state health codes.

8 building kitchen is absolutely the worst. On more than one occasion I have spoken to the Lt. and Sgt. about there being roaches in the food carts, food being served on dirty dishes, and food being served cold. Yet the kitchen area itself has not been properly cleaned or disinfected or sanitized.

The dayrooms are never mopped, neither are the runways, and the windows aren't sanitized.

Expose the system!

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[Abuse] [Federal Correctional Institution McKean] [Pennsylvania] [ULK Issue 11]
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The Pigs Feed at the Lockdown Trough

The McKean Federal Prison in Bradford, Pennsylvania is on lockdown due to a fight between African-American gang members and Mexican-American gang members. Nobody was hurt and all those involved or thought to be involved have been placed in segregation. So the threat of continued violence no longer exist, however the prison administration has decided to continue the lockdown indefinitely!

Due to the ill-treatment that we are going through in here, we seek the help of MIM concerning this matter. As this lockdown is about money, not a security threat as you will see.

It should be noted that an Acting Warden took over the week following the fight, and does not want to take responsibility for lifting the lockdown.

It is obvious that the threat of violence no longer exists since the prison administration allowed 30 to 40 prisoners to go to work in the prison's UNICOR factory. If there were a serious security threat why are these prisoners being allowed to go to work? They're not feeding prisoners or washing clothes, but working in the prison factory making cups, spoons and forks!

The prisoners have only been allowed 2 showers a week. They have been feeding us 1 thin slice of cold cuts, 1 thin slice of cheese, 4 slices of bread, 1 spoiled fruit, 1 small pack of cookies, and 2 drink mixes. Several prisoners have been suffering from constipation. They have started giving us lukewarm meals, but those meals aren't any better.

We have been denied access to commissary except to buy stamps and batteries, denied access to the law library, phone calls, etc. But the main problem, once again, is the food.

Now, due to the lockdown, the staff here gets extra pay. So there is this possible link which motivates the continuation of the lockdown, especially due to the situation our economy is in. And with the majority of the staff here being related to each other in one way or another, nepotism is rampant here. There is no one the prisoners can complain to in order to address our concerns. And that is why I am writing you. This lockdown is about MONEY!

It is my hope that your legal department will call the acting warden, any of the associate wardens or the Captain at McKean and inquire about this situation. As you know, they will LIE, but one or two phone calls threatening legal action will bring about a change.

The phone number to the McKean Federal Prison is (814) 362-8900.

see our analysis on the parasitic economics of the amerikkkan prison system in ULK 8

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[Organizing] [Maryland] [ULK Issue 11]
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Drop the Pacifiers and Take Action

Greetings from a new soldier in the struggle. I'm the brother who was inspired to join the movement when I read the comrade's article in ULK number 8: Remove the Profit Motive. Since that time I've become indigent. I'm letting the state fork the bill for my incarceration.

I'm writing today about our need for unity. I've seen a couple of things that impede our uniting. One is separation by gangs; there only needs to be two gangs, us and them: "Admin."

Second, I know all my comrades know that the administration's across the country use televisions, radios, fans, etc. And now here Play Station 2's as a "pacifier" and "control tool."

I see grown men jumping with joy to be allowed to buy Play Station. Administration sitting back laughing. That's it, take this pacifier, forget your problems and we'll continue to do to you what we want.

I'm in the process of sending my appliances home. I want to focus on what's important, my rights and the injustices going on in prison town USA.

The fear to lose these pacifiers I mentioned hold a lot of brothers back from bucking the administrations and their strong arm tactics.

I hear it all the time, I'm not losing my privileges fighting for something that will not change. They're right, it will not change with that attitude. The show of unity is the only way to make a change.

Administration here now sends all your property home when you receive 180 days or more on lock up. These people are smart, they know a large percentage of the population don't want to lose those pacifiers. So we remain guinea pigs, they test to see what they can get away with.

I'm now focused on what I can do to fight peacefully against these gate keepers. I'm testing to see if I can get population to come together for a peaceful demonstration. I'm asking everybody in population to skip one meal in protest to the injustices that are going on. We in prison need to stop talking, stop complaining and come together and take action. Send them pacifiers home, stand up and be a man.

MIM(Prisons) adds: Current wars in the Congo that have displaced and killed millions of people over a ten-year period are being dubbed the “Playstation War” because of the direct relationship between mining for coltan, and this metal’s use in manufacturing Sony Playstations, as well as other electronics.

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