The Voice of the Anti-Imperialist Movement from

Under Lock & Key

Got a keyboard? Help type articles, letters and study group discussions from prisoners. help out
[United Front] [Mental Health] [ULK Issue 19]

The Subjection of the Incarcerated

I read in the September/October 2010 issue, an article written by a prisoner in the Pennsylvania structure. He said, "[guys in this jail] are only concerned with BET, sports, 40 cent ice cream tickets and who's sucking whose dick... they don't stand up for shit except count time."

I believe these statements are very correct. Not only for the Pennsylvania structures, but all penal structures throughout the United $tates. I've read every single article in that issue by many different prisoners throughout these structures. I can relate to every last one of them, and I'm pretty sure that all prisoners within the system can relate to every single article just the same.

These structures differ only so slightly, only by name, location and modeled design, but their inner mechanisms pretty much work the same way. Everyone complains of the disunity and betrayal between their fellow prisoners. Noone wants to stand up against the powerful structure that has the ability to deploy swarms of guards equipped with body armor shields and pepper spray to counter any resistance from its 'subjects.' Even though we outnumber them, in the end, they still seem to come out on top. They seem unstoppable, victorious, and mighty. Prisoners give these "warriors" seemingly honorable names such as "The Goon Squad", "The Turtles," "The Team," "The Run Down Boys", and "The Squad."

Riots and uprisings are quickly squashed with no positive results, other than more lockdowns, revocation of good time and parole, restrictions on telephones and visitations and all other privileges of the prisoners that were provided by their "structure." I relate and share in the suffering and pains of every one of my comrades.


But do you know why there is so much disunity between prisoners? Do you understand how the human mind works? Do you understand what I mean by the term structure? Do you know how dangerous and manipulative your institutional psychologist or "psych" could really be? Do you know why all modern prisoners must be built and structured into many individual pods? Do you know what your mind frame is being subjected to, by the master psychologists and anthropologists who designed and masterminded the inner workings and mechanics that make these structures work so differently from those of the 70s and 80s?

In the world of psychology, there's a basic and very fundamental term known as "Classical Conditioning." Classical Conditioning means any type of learning through which an organism learns to associate one event or object within the environment to which the organism or person responds with another. For example: when we see or smell delicious food we are tempted to eat, or feel hungry. Or when we see a very attractive person, we become sexually aroused, thanks to certain hormones that are being secreted within our bodies.

These natural responses to events or objects in our environment are our Classical Conditioning. It is in our nature to respond in this way to these types of stimuli. (Ivan Pavlov 1849-1936, Conditioned Reflexes: An investigation of the physiological activity of the cerebral cortex.) [ULK Editor: Classical Conditioning is actually the replacement of the natural occurring stimulus (like the smell of food) with an unrelated stimulus (like the ringing of a bell). Pavlov famously made dogs salivate with this method by ringing a bell. The idea that anything that triggers a physiological response is "natural" is often used to imply that humyns are hard wired to respond this way. On the contrary, most, if not all, of our sexual arousal is triggered by socially conditioned responses (see Operant Conditioning below). A scientific approach would be to overthrow the patriarchy and then see what triggers sexual arousal in humyns. Things that trigger sexual arousal under communism and under the patriarchy would be good candidates for "hard wired" responses. Similarly, the smell of certain fast food might make some Amerikanized humyns salivate while making other people nauseous.]

The next most basic and fundamental term in the world of psychology is known as "Operant Conditioning." Operant Conditioning means a type of learning in which the consequences of behavior are manipulated so as to increase or decrease the frequency of an existing response or to shape an entirely new response. For example, in order to be paroled and released back into society, you must respond with good behavior throughout your incarceration. Or, if you break the law, the response of the controlling authorities will be to convict you and then send you to prison.

The most notable researcher of Operant Conditioning is a psychologist by the name of B.F. Skinner. In his book, "Beyond Freedom and Dignity" (1971) Skinner quotes "free will is a myth and a person's behavior is always shaped and controlled by others - parents, teachers, peers, advertising and television." In this book, Skinner argues that society must systematically shape the behavior of their members for the larger good.

Now that we are familiar with the terms Classical and Operant Conditioning, we will lean more towards the Operant Conditioning within the walls of these structures because Operant Conditioning deals strictly with the manipulation of human behavior.

Operant Conditioning in Prisons

As of right now, I'm confined to solitary confinement, in a single cell for 23 hours a day for a total of 570 days. My original time was 90 days for a "shank" or "shaped weapon" that was allegedly found in my cell during a shake down at a time when we were having a lot of stabbings within our structure. When they brought me down to the hole, they tried to give me a cellmate, but I refused. Due to this refusal, I was issued a ticket, which was then reviewed by a hearing examiner, who gave me an extra 30 days in the hole for "refusing to obey a direct order." Every day, the guards would order me to take a cellmate, but I refused. Within one month I totaled 570 days, and counting.

One must be thinking, why is he putting himself through all of this unnecessary punishment? Why don't he just take a cellmate and get out of the hole?

The truth is, I'm actually avoiding extra punishment, not physically but mentally. The hole is a behavior modification mechanism within the structure that employs a form of deprivation to manipulate human behavior. It is not meant for two human organisms to occupy for any period of time. But due to overcrowding in all of the Pennsylvania's structures, people are being forced to cell up and co-exist with each other under these harsh conditions. A man needs privacy and time to himself in order to cope in the best way he can during this time of extreme deprivation. But instead prisoners within my structure are forced into these conditions. Under these conditions cellmates are known to fight with each other for something as minor as using the bathroom at a certain time of night. Whereas in general population if the same two individuals were cellmates an unorthodox or out of timed bathroom break would never have been a problem.

After their fight these same two prisoners are then forced to kiss and make up and endure each other's differences as well as their deprivations. Under these conditions, stress and mental anguish are always present. This type of stress results in bad health and hair loss. It is much healthier to remain in solitary where one doesn't have to deal with the next man's deprivations as well as his own. I see and hear cellmates argue and fight each other every day from where I'm at. A lot of the cellmates do not get along and "pull stunts" to force the commanding shift officer to move them in with someone more suitable.

Another form of Operant Conditioning used to manipulate behavior employed by the penal system is food. Though food is a necessity for the human organism and is classified as Classical Conditioning, when used in behavior modification - it becomes operant. For example, in the hole, we get fed less portions of the meals than those in general population.

The food, that all of us prisoners consume is laced with monosodium glutamate (MSG). Our tongue has four distinct taste sensations: bitter, sweet, sour and salty. The fifth sensation is called the umanmi, which is triggered by the substance glutamate. When this fifth sensation is triggered by this glutamate substance, it stimulates the other four sensations on the tongue's taste buds, creating a strong urge for more glutamate substance. Try eating a handful of salt and vinegar potato chips and then bite into an apple. Which product will you crave more?

To supplement the effects of monosodium glutamate in the lunch and dinner meals, the penal system provides the prisoners with a commissary that has food available upon purchase in its inventory. The prisoners are now led to purchase items on commissary to supplement their chemically induced hunger at night after the prison feeds him/her their dinner. Ninety percent of the prisoners I know can't live without ramen noodles every night. So now the prisoner becomes dependent on the commissary.

Then, penal systems will provide the prisoner with privileges, but only if his behavior is in compliance with the rules. The prisoner is allowed to have a radio and a television set with cable in his cell. Then there are the phone calls, the visits, parole, the weight room and the yard. But let's go back to the television set. A TV is major time killer. You could do your entire bid in the cell just watching TV. The TV is a major stimulus if you want to control the weak prisoner. Most people in the hole say "I can't wait to get back out and watch TV., I've missed 3 episodes of Jersey Shore (or whatever program) already." Even I miss the television and a good honey bun every now and then.

The manipulation of Operant Conditioning can be so powerful, many prisoners take abuse from their structure's establishment in order that they may make parole and go home to their families. Within my structure, the prisoners are forced to take programs and work jobs that start at 19 cents an hour, otherwise they won't make parole. Would you stay in prison for 10 years, or adjust your behavior and go home within 5 or 4 1/4 on pre-release.

These individuals who are trying to go home, as well as the weak prisoners, are then placed within the same housing unit along with the strong, long term more militant prisoners - who, by the way happen to be our comrades in the struggle. With these different individuals with different goals in mind, any type of unity or grouping together for one common cause is gonna be difficult.

Whenever the penal system changes a policy that we are in opposition to, only a few will be able to stand up while the majority of these strategically placed so-called convicts will turn their backs and endure the abuse in order to be released from prison or maintain possession of their privileges.

We can't shut down the kitchens, because a majority of the prisoners who are working there are parole mandated. They would rather deal with the abuse and go home. Hunger strikes are iffy. A riot these days will consist of no more than 300 people, which is easily contained as soon as they seal off the individual pods or units and lock the prison structure down. Then they turn us against each other by offering the unfortunate and the "have nots" a radio or television set, in return for spying and telling on their comrades' movements.

The ones who designed the program structure, the parole structure, the commissary and privilege rights (the "brains") are the college educated psychologists who we will never see. They are the ones who created this form of behavior modification.

Because of this, a division is wedged in between our factions, causing a chain reaction of adversary and conflict amongst ourselves. The ones who have a little bit of money, shun and look down upon the one who is broke. Even if the one who doesn't have any money on his books had lived more prosperous in the streets. The young prisoners take our older comrades for granted because they are old. Thus creating a huge intellectual and traditional gap between the two.

Phillip Zimbardo is a psychologist most notable for his work on social roles. A social role, as defined by Zimbardo is a "socially defined behavior considered appropriate for individuals occupying certain positions within a given group."(P.G. Zimbardo, "Pathology of Imprisonment" (1972) 'Society,' 9, 4-8.) The Stanford Prison Experiment is an experiment in which Phillip Zimbardo simulated a prison experience. College students were randomly assigned to be either guards or prisoners. The guards, wearing uniform and carrying small clubs, strictly enforced harsh rules. The prisoners were stripped naked, searched and deloused. Then they were given prison uniforms, assigned numbers, and locked away in small bare cells. The guards quickly adapted to their new role, some even to the point of becoming heartless and sadistic. One guard remembered forcing prisoners to clean toilets with their bare hands. And the prisoners began to act debased and subservient. The role playing became too real - so much so that the experiment had to be ended in only 6 days.

That was just an experiment, play acting. But you see once an individual becomes wrapped up in a certain social role how far it can lead. Zimbardo conducted this experiment back in 1972, but we are in the real thing today. Once these guys adapt to certain roles and behaviors, the result is what we see being acted out today.

One day, a guard burnt one of our comrades for a meal right here in the hole. Only 7 of us held our food trays and refused to return them in protest of the injustice that was carried out. Those that gave their tray back all stated that they didn't want to get a ticket, that they were trying to get out of the hole as soon as possible.

So, what are we left with? The answer is simple - it's knowledge. My comrades, prison is a mental struggle, it always was. We must evolve mentally. Study psychology, get good at it. Study political science, get good at it. Study anthropology, get good at it. We must evolve and turn our cells into think tanks. Learn and understand how the penal system structure controls and manipulates human behavior.

Stop taking psychological medication in any form, be it a sleep inducer or antidepressant. For when you are released you will be subjected to withdrawals whenever deprived which may lead you into narcotic abuse. If you can't sleep, read and learn meditation and breathing exercises, heal yourself.

If you're depressed, meditation and inner calmness works wonders on the mind. The structure is a very powerful establishment designed and put together by some very smart college educated veterans, who get paid a lot of money to make sure that the prisoners advances are easily thwarted.

When we are able to show and prove that our solution is better, the younger ones will follow and we will grow in numbers in time. For now, my comrades, we are all in the same boat. Let's not be upset with the younger ones or the ignorant who refuse to unite. The manipulators who control these structures have made sure that the consequences will outweigh the rewards by far.

The weight of the structure sits heavy on those who need to get home to their families. The younger ones are easily manipulated, just give them a television and some food, and the jail could burn to the ground for all they care. As long as the power don't shut off.

For the rest of us, my comrades, if we continue to apply ourselves and stick to our disciplines, in time we will grow in numbers. Understand the importance of the right knowledge for the right battle. This is a psychological war. Learn the fundamentals of psychology, please.

Prison today is more like a mental hospital. With the number of the mentally ill growing in numbers every year, psych meds dim the intelligence of the individual, making him/her slow as the years go by. Understand what you're really being subjected to within your structure. Learn to adapt and adjust, be independent.

MIM(Prisons) responds: This analysis of prisons using classical psychological tools is useful for revolutionaries because it helps to uncover the methods and goals of those who design and run the Amerikan criminal injustice system. This comrade is right that the system is built to discourage and prevent organizing and unity. It's not that prisoners who are passive are inherently evil, they are just doing what the system is pushing them to do, and resistance is no easy task. Similarly, brutal COs are not just evil individuals. They are playing a role like the students in the experiment. This role cannot be abolished until capitalism itself is abolished.

For our comrades who do stand up against all this, we must know that the struggle is long and difficult. But as this comrade points out, we will grow and unite others as we stick to our message and discipline. For more on MIM(Prisons)'s position on psychology, check out the magazine MIM Theory 9 or our article Mental Health: a Maoist Perspective.


La escritura no-ficción = amenaza de seguridad

por un prisionero de Wisconsin noviembre 2011

El mes pasado, octubre, un hermano recibió un reporte de mala conducta escrito contra él por tener los Libros de Soledad Brother y From Niggas to God. La administración dió la razón que George Jackson fue conocido como un "Black Panther", como si eso fuera una razón válida para un reporte de mala conducta. Ellos dijeron que From Niggas to God estaba prohibido en la institución correccional de Green Bay. Yo pienso que es porque ellos no nos quieren que vayamos llamándonos a nosotros mismos "Niggas," actuando como niggas, a llamándonos hijos de Dios o actuando como tal. Ellos quieren que todavía seamos los niggas de ellos y más vale que no nos cojan tratando de educarnos o leyendo libros de sustancia. Pero sí podemos leer libros 'urbanos' y novelas que promocionan la muerte y la violencia entre nosotros mismos. Al hermano le dieron 210 días en el hoyo.

El 2 de noviembre 2010, la cama de mi camarada fue rebuscada por el puerco racista van Laden el cual confiscó varios libros, es decir, Soledad Brother, Noam Chomsky, Niami Akbar, el libro de lector de Cornell West y un par más. Ellos también confiscaron varias ediciones del periódico 4struggle porque mencionaban el partido Black Panther. Por varios días ellos no le dieron el reporte de conducta. Usualmente eso no se tarda más que dos días. El fue llamado para hablar con el puerco van Laden y van Laden le dijo que le vería en la corte, en realidad es una audiencia del reporte de conducta.

En el 11/8/2010 el recibió el reporte de conducta. Es una persecución de brujas. En lo cual el puerco van Laden dice que Soledad Brother menciona a los Black Panthers, y que el periódico de 4struggle menciona las 10 puntos de la plataforma de los Black Panthers, con frases como "Puños Cerrados" "Poder Para La Gente" "Rojo, Negro y Verde." Este puerco dijo que los libros eran materiales de la "Supremacía de Negros " yo todavía estoy tratando de entender que quiere decir la Supremacía de Negros". La palabra supremacía significa que grupo dice que es más superior al otro. Nada de lo que ellos confiscaron significa nada de eso porque si significara algo de eso el hubiera especificado tal y tal página de este libro dice que "Ellos son superiores y los blancos son inferiores." Pero no pueden porque nada de lo que confiscaron significa lo que él esta alegando. El clama ser un experto de amenazas de seguridad y dice en el reporte que los Black Panthers están en la lista como un grupo de amenaza de seguridad. Ahora cualquier material que la menciona que está restringida y cualquier persona que se encuentre con ese material esta en violación por tener ese material de escritura. Lo mismo que esclavitud.

Pero miren esto, el camarada tiene recibos de todos los libros que ellos dicen que son amenazas a la seguridad. Ellos los dejaron entrar y después dicen que uno no se puede tenerlos. Ellos tienen una lista de libros restringidos y ningunos de los libros confiscados están en esa lista. Ni Soledad Brother porque nada es su contenido es una amenaza a la seguridad. George no está promocionando nada de violencia ni supremacía negra. Como yo dije antes esto es un intento de los puercos para rompernos.

Los dos hermanos que mencioné están en el mismo dormitorio que yo, estamos en un ambiente social, sin pelear entre nosotros mismos, más enseñando a estos hermanos más jóvenes. Eso es la amenaza de seguridad para ellos. Ellos no quieren que aprendamos de nuestra historia y tener un sentido de nuestro mismo. Ellos quieren que seamos ignorantes y corriendo por aquí siendo unos "N"es buenos. El leer es restringido a menos que sea algo de ficción. El fue cargado con resistencia de grupo y petición y espera ir a su audiencia.

En 11/5/2010 fui llamado a el escritorio del comandante y me preguntó cómo otro prisionero tuvo mi libro porque ella dijo si no se lo di ella lo escribiera por robo. Yo le dije que el guardia regular Comandante Zellner que trabaja aquí dijo que él, el hermano, podía leer mi libro siempre y cuando que él se me devuelva el libro antes de la fin de la noche. Ella me dijo pues, te voy a escribir por una transferencia de propiedad inautorizada. Ella llamó a otro hermano a la mesa y le devolvió su libro sin darle una multa. El título de mi libro era Huey P. Newton and the Black Panther Party. Eso es porque ella me escribió y le devolvió al otro hermano su libro.

Yo recibí el reporte de conducta el 11/8/2010 y resistencia de grupo y petición estaba en mis cargos también. Este cargo es uno de los que ellos usan para poner a uno en el hoyo o también enviarnos a la súper-máxima de Wisconsin en Boscobel donde yo he estado por más de 4 años. El reporte dice que di mi libro a otro para leer lo cual es violación 9.3. transfiriendo propiedad inautorizada. Aun si el guardia te dio permiso sigue siendo una violación bajo sus semánticos de neolengua de 1984. También dice que los Black Panthers es un grupo "no sancionado", y el libro está confiscado. Pero trabajé en la biblioteca aquí anterior y vi este mismo libro en varias ocasiones. También vi a Soledad Brother y From Niggas to God.

El arreglo esta. Yo y el camarada todavía estamos esperando ir a nuestras audiencias. Hablamos con un camisa blanca y el director de seguridad de esta arreglo. Así ellos tienen sabiduría de esto y pueden ser incluidos en la demanda, porque nada de esto es una amenaza. ¡Yo tenía este libro por más de 6 años! Estamos tratando de desplegar la palabra de todo esto. Ellos tienen una lista de libros restringidos pero ningún de los libros que nos quitaron están en esa lista.

También yo escribí un libro del cambio y dejé a un joven hermano leerlo. Su cama fue rebuscada y otro puerco se lo llevo al sargento lo cual me llamó a su escritorio y me preguntó si ese era mi libro. Le dije que sí. Me hizo la pregunta ¿quién te dio permiso para escribir esto? Yo dije mi mente! ¿Qué quiere decir quién me dio permiso? Dijo que llamaba a la seguridad para ver si podría hacer esto. Pasó una hora más o menos y me llamó al escritorio y me devolvió el libro. La cosa es "¿Quién me dio permiso? Como si yo necesitara el permiso de alguien otro para escribir mis pensamientos Esta mismo puerco tiene un tatuaje de la bandera de confederación en su brazo izquierdo.

Diciéndonos que no podemos leer o ganar un sentido de nuestro mismo por aprender de nuestra historia o que necesitamos "su" permiso para escribir nuestros pensamientos es la misma como la esclavitud que sufrieron nuestros antepasados. Pero la mayoría no pueden verlo así. Sólo lo ven como estos puercos racistas tienen un trabajo. Esto no es un trabajo, esto es una forma de la opresión,. El capitalismo es opresión. Somos su modo de tener un trabajo por nuestra opresión. Trato de hacer que estos hermanos menores y mayores vean esto. La esclavitud era el capitalismo. La prisión es el capitalismo. Los blancos eran los que corrían los campamentos. Los blancos son los que corren la prisión, es lo mismo sino una nueva manera.


Revolutionary Rising

I'm lock'n loaded, tried, tested;
now proven
revolution is now what,
has ensued.
In the vein of Marx, Lenin, and Mao passed:
first is where the heart is,
the proletariat class!
Try as you might, superior numbers manifest,
In league, with the correct political line.
followers we have. Guns too:
next is political power.
With a massive, intake
of breath;
know it's the bourgeoisie's final hour.
Capitalist pigs and imperialist scum,
wiping blood off our boots
as thoughts and feelings
have become numb.
If this is not coming through,
here it is spoken, loud and clear:
"This is a struggle and a fight!"
Either bourgeoisie or proletariat class.
Yours is our life.

[Civil Liberties] [Abuse] [California State Prison, Solano] [California]

Brutality Under Color of State Law

As I laid there on my prison issued bunk, nursing my wounds and pains, I thought back to the very day I was sentenced to prison. Did my sentence also include occasional excessive force? Did the judge also pronounce contrived rule violations as part of my sentence? Were all my constitutional rights relinquished that day? I don't recall the judge asserting anything to that fact. But evidently, brutality perpetuated Under the Color of State Law is an inherited trait of prison.

The term "Under Color of State Law" means that civil rights were violated by an individual or individuals who at the time of the violation were employed by the local, State, or Federal government.

Since brutality under Color of State Law is so prevalent, it would be appropriate if the sentencing Judge would state the obvious during the sentencing phase of whatever crime a person was convicted of. The Judge could say something to the fact, "I'm sentencing you to 10 years in prison, plus some occasional excessive force, which will be administrated by various rogue Correctional Officers throughout the course of your confinement. In addition, you will also be subjected to several contrived rule violations. The frequency of these false rule reports will depend on the utter lack of integrity and the psychopathy of each rogue Officer." At least this information would give a person facing incarceration a heads up. Time to mentally prepare themselves for the Guantanamo Bay-style treatment that will be visited upon them.

During the course of Correctional Officer B. Johnson's assault on me, I felt as if I were somehow transported to a Third World country where human rights and regulation did not exist. Apparently, my assailant felt the same. How else could he feel so at ease with openly violating my civil rights, right there in front of two other officers, who evidently concurred with B. Johnson's views on civil rights? Maybe the three officers forgot they were in Amerika? That they were correctional officers employed to uphold the law in a system governed by the U.S. Constitution? Or just maybe they forgot that I am a human being? Officer B. Johnson did call me a "Jungle Bunny." But if that were the case, shouldn't animal rights have protected me that night? Here in America, if you harm an animal, you will go to jail. Who knows what the three officer's were or were not thinking. Whatever it was, the shear, sadism of it all was revealed that night.

The assault was witnessed by two prisoners. Both were housed in a cell that gave them a direct view of the incident as it took place. One prisoner, who initially claimed that he witnessed the assault, later recanted his story. He became a confidential informant. He had alleged to the investigating Officers that I conspired to falsely write up B. Johnson for assault. He was originally placed in the hole for a cell fight, whereupon he threw hot boiling water on his cellmate. His cellmate received 3rd degree burns on his face and chest area. At that time he was facing a segregated program (SHU term) for assault on a prisoner with a weapon (hot water), causing serious injury. Also a possible DA referral. But all that disappeared after he provided false confidential information concerning B. Johnson's role in the assault. This prisoner was released from the hole and placed on Corcoran's SNY yard, which is a protective custody yard, equivalent to Disneyland.

Officer B. Jonson, has a history of assaulting prisoners in handcuffs. Now I have a permanent shoulder injury. I will need surgery at some point. I have received physical therapy treatment.

MIM(Prisons) responds: We agree with this comrade's assessment that prison sentences in Amerika come with implicit brutality and both physical and mental abuse. These go well beyond the legal punishments supposedly a part of criminal "justice" in this country. As this abuse is standard in Amerikan prisons, we disagree that the perpetrators are "rogue officers." We need to expose this systematic brutality and organize towards a level of unity that will make it very difficult for individuals to turn against their fellow prisoners, and where the guards know that we have the numbers to fight back and prevent this violence.

[Campaigns] [Abuse] [High Desert State Prison] [California] [ULK Issue 19]

Battle at HDSP Gains Official Attention

On 19 January 2011 High Desert State Prison (HDSP) was visited by administrators from the headquarters of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) in Sacramento, as well as the inspector general. These administrators finally listened to the many complaints from prisoners and outside advocacy groups and started an investigation into the corrupt policies and actions in place here at HDSP. In this struggle, MIM(Prisons) was instrumental in sending us petitions to submit regarding the appeals process.

This investigation had two parts. It was carried out by several administrators and started in the morning and continued into the early evening. Several prisoners were interviewed, some once, while others twice. I was one of those who was interviewed twice, first by a Correctional Counselor II from headquarters. We discussed the appeals process here at HDSP. During this interview we mostly talked about how our appeals are continuously screened out, denied, lost or simply ignored. The interviewer asked meaningful and intelligent questions and took detailed notes, and he appeared surprised by the lack of meaningful access to the appeals process. This interview only lasted between 10 and 15 minutes.

Later that same day, at around 5:45 p.m., I was again taken from my cell for an interview. This time it was with a captain from headquarters (Sacramento) and the inspector general. During this interview I was told that they, Sacramento CDCR Headquarters, were doing these interviews due to the pressure and complaints coming into Sacramento from prisoners, advocacy groups, and prisoners' families. They said they were simply conducting fact-finding interviews. This interview was more in-depth than the morning interview. We discussed a wide range of topics during the interview from the mass validations of the northern Hispanics on 4 August 2009, the poor conditions here in Z-unit (administrative segregation), to the many violations of our constitutional rights. Again the interviewers asked many valid questions and took notes, giving the appearance of taking things seriously. I did not buy into the act.

During this meeting they showed me copies of petitions I had mailed out which included the MIM(Prisons) grievance petition. I don't know if this is going to make any difference because I think (and hopefully I'm wrong) this was only a smoke and mirror show to attempt to pacify those of us who are fighting against these corrupt and unjust policies. But only time will tell how big a victory this truly was, because it was a victory!

I seriously doubt anything comes of this so-called investigation that is a significant improvement to the quality of life for us here in the zoo (Z-Unit). The reason I think this is the day after the Sacramento officials left HDSP, staff on Z-Unit started their retaliation. They cut our food portions almost in half, and the law library was denied to those of us who are Priority Library Users and have court deadlines. So I expect things will go back to normal in a week or two. Its the same every time anyone visits up here. One of the Sgts did say that they are totally redesigning the entire appeals process and we did get beanies (to protect us from the cold on the yard).

However this is not enough, we cannot afford to be satisfied with this token gesture of a beanie and some promises. No, we must continue to fight and put the pressure on HDSP until we are given all of our rights as well as everything we are entitled to by law and common human decency.

MIM(Prisons) adds: Contact us for more information about the campaign to end the Z-Unit Zoo, and the grievance campaign which is active in multiple states. If there are problems with the grievance system where you're at, spread it to yours!

[Abuse] [Clinton Correctional Facility] [New York] [ULK Issue 19]

Murders at Klinton

I am just checking in with current cowardly acts perpetrated by cowardly Kkklinton (Clinton Correctional Facility in New York). (see ULK 17)

The murder of Mr. Leonard Strickland(see 1,2) last October 3rd 2010 in upper F Block has now been termed "death by natural causes" by channel 5 news media in Vermont.

More recently, corrupt klansmen under disguise of law abiding civil servants jumped on a 5'6" 147lbs man. And get this, one of the cowards, CO Barnaby, is also one of the murderers of Mr. Strickland. The others involved in this particular incident of brutal assault are COs L. Bezio whose family members are numerous here in Kkklinton and CO B. LeClair whose family members are also employees of facilities here in northern New York, including Kkklinton.

The behavior of these corrupt officials is very onerous, especially when their superior acting Deputy Superintendent, Captain of Security Facteau makes statements such as "this is a dictatorship, not a democracy," a statement that is relayed amongst all employees giving them the green light to violate even the prisoners' minimum standards.

Maybe one of these days the lumpen will unite as one and focus on our real enemies?


Cambiando Unidades de Control a Universidades

Como ya lo sabemos, unidades de control son cámaras de tortura donde prisioneros pasan de 22 a 24 horas al día encerrados en una celda pequeña por largos periodos del tiempo con una luz cegadora quemando todo el día, sin programas ni educativos ni de otras formas, y sin la debida atención médica y de la salud mental. Estamos forzados en vivir adentro con marranos que nos oprimen cada día. Estas condiciones son intentados en quebrar el espíritu y estado mental de los prisioneros. Son herramientas de opresión. Aquí he visto prisioneros darse por vencido y perder toda la esperanza, perdiendo sus estados mentales, dañándose y aun suicidarse. No hay duda que estos lugares horríficos afectan al estado mental de un prisionero, es decir la mayoría de ellos. Sin embargo, podemos y debemos cambiar estos cámaras de tortura en nuestros universidades, por el mejoramiento de nosotros y por nuestros camaradas oprimidos.

La primera vez que fui colocado en una unidad de control (aquí en Florida son llamados unidades manejados muy de cerca [se refiere como CM en el resto de este artículo]) hice dos años encerrado en una celda pequeña 24 horas al día. En mis primeros meses estaba desperdiciando mi tiempo, peleando y leyendo libros de ficción que matan la mente. Estaba ciego a la lucha - nuestra lucha, el oprimido contra el opresor. Luego, un día, un camarada me pasó un libro llamado El último hombre de pie por Gerónimo Pratt, un miembro alto del Partido Negro Pantera. Ese libro dio chispa al revolucionario dentro de mí y desde luego no he mirado atrás. Luego conocí a George Jackson, a Mao, a Lenin y a Che entre otros. Eso fue cuando empecé a formar y organizar mis ideales. Cuando mi familia me preguntaba si necesitaba dinero para cantina, les decía que no. En lugar de eso, les pedía que me mandaran libros sobre o escritos por los camaradas sobre mencionados y empecé a estudiar todo el tiempo.

Al pasar del tiempo un camarada me dio una copia de Bajo Cerradura y Clave y me encanto. Eso me subió en la lucha de la prisión. Empecé a corresponder con MIM(prisiones) y después de un tiempo empecé a escribir artículos para ellos. Los camaradas en MIM(prisiones) me aprovisionaron con materiales buenos y muy necesarios para estudiar y seguí trabajando fuerte de parte de la lucha-nuestra lucha. He aprendido a disciplinarme y organizarme en una manera que nunca imaginaba posible. Mientras que crecía mentalmente y aumentaba mi conocimiento de la lucha, lo compartía con otros y ayudé a despertar a sus conscientes.

No tenía acceso a nada salvo lo que MIM(prisiones) me mandaba y mis únicos oportunidades de salir de mi celda era cuando tenía que ver el personal médico o de salud mental y cuando teníamos el recreo en un pequeño jaula de perro y duchas 3 veces a la semana. Sin embargo, Me negué todo esto. Yo pensé - y todavía pienso- que por ir a estos estaba malgastando el tiempo que pudiera usar para estudiar y hacer trabajo por la causa. Yo hacía ejercicios y tomaba baños de pájaro en la celda. Yo aun estudiaba cuando se apagaban las luces. Usaba una poquita de luz que entraba por la ventana de atrás desde un poste de luz de pie afuera del edificio.

Los marranos estaban acostumbrados al ir y hacer sus revisiones y ver a los prisioneros acurrucados en sus camas no haciendo nada o solo mirando al vacio mientras se hablaban a sí mismos. De hecho, les gustaba a ver esto porque sabían que estaban venciendo las mentes y espíritus combatientes de los prisioneros. Pero lo odiaban cuando caminaban por mi celda y me veían sentado en el piso con todo tipo de libros, diccionarios, papeles y plumas alrededor de mi. No me podrían agrietar - mucho menos destrozarme - y eso les comía adentro. No les daba la cansa. Estaba - y todavía estoy - peleándolos hasta el último final. Si no puedo pelearles físicamente, les pelearé ellos con papel y pluma por correr la voz de la lucha y ayudar a otras personas oprimidos despertarse sus conscientes.

Cuando yo estaba a punto de ser soltado a la población abierta me dije a mí mismo que si empezaba descarrilarme y perder mi disciplina que regresare a la CM adrede para empezar disciplinarme de nuevo. Cuando finalmente fui soltado en al fin de 2009, la gente que me conocía antes no me asociaban mucho conmigo porque no podían relacionarse a mi nuevo estado de mente. Afortunadamente, yo pude despertar algunos y unírselos las fuerzas en la lucha.

En mi primer prisión, después de salir de la CM, pronto formé un grupo de estudios con 9 camaradas y de lo cual el camarada que me introdujo a MIM(Prisiones) era una parte. De cualquier manera, la prisión en la que estábamos era extremamente racista y opresiva y los marranos empezaron a centrársenos. Por ser portavoz del grupo me consideraban el líder y solamente por eso saqueaban y destruían mi propiedad personal cada vez que tenían la oportunidad, me amenazaban, y luego me encerraban en solitario con cargos falsos. Finalmente me trasladaron a otra prisión.

En la siguiente prisión los marranos ya sabían de mi, entonces en cuanto a llegué las búsquedas y la destrucción de propiedad personal continuaban. Pero eso ni me quitó las ganas ni sacudió mi confianza. En unas cuantas semanas tenía otro grupo de estudio corriendo. Pero luego, ni un año después de mi salida de la CM tuve un pleito con otro prisionero quien era un soplón para los marranos y regresé a la CM donde me encuentro presentemente.

He llegado a la conclusión que la populación abierta no es para mí. Me quita demasiado de mi tiempo del estudio. Tiempo para estudiar que necesito cuando sea soltado a la sociedad. Además, en CM no tengo marranos en mi cara todo el día. En la población abierto hay una gran posibilidad que yo le dañe a uno de ellos gravemente y agarre más tiempo en prisión. Entonces he decidido en hacer mis 14 años que me faltan en una celda solitario. Esto pueda ser útil para mí, pero no es para todo porque todo ni lo entiende ni aprecian tal como yo.

Si no tiene ninguna opción sino que estar en una unidad de control, no desperdiga su tiempo. No deje que estos malditos marranos te quiebren. Convierta tu cámara de tortura en la cual te encuentras en tu universidad. Lea, estudie, edúcate a ti mismo. Suscríbete a Bajo Cerradura y Llave y otros materiales de MIM(Prisiones). Si no tienes muchos materiales que estudiar, estudia lo que tienes una y otra vez. Estarás sorprendido con cuanto podrás aprender con leer la misma cosa una y otra vez. Todavía tengo el primer Bajo Cerradura y Llave que leí, que me fue dado por ese buen camarada 3 años antes, y todavía lo leo de vez en cuando. Y cada vez que lo leo, aprendo algo nuevo.

Pues camaradas, despiértense y pónganse a estudiar. Enséñenles a los marranos que no permitan que se les quebranten y que están dispuesto a pelear, a aprender y luchar...y a convertir sus cámaras de tortura en su universidad. No la conviertas en tu cementerio mental y físico.

[Organizing] [Security] [Oregon] [ULK Issue 18]

Special Needs Yards Revolutionary Fighting Fascism

I'd like to comment on special needs yards and the lack of revolutionaries therein. I am on such a unit, except here in Oregon they call them mental health units. Of course there is also protective custody but, I'm not addressing PC units in this letter.

I am a former racist skinhead who left the movement decades ago. Since then I began a movement to get others out of the white supremacist movement by educating them on issues of white privilege, aspects of class war and anti-imperialism. I was extremely successful and my efforts have been recognized at a national level. Someone needed to come forward to educate these misguided individuals. I did. Now I pay the price.

As the result of some robberies I was sent to prison. Almost immediately I was recognized and repeatedly attacked while staff lied and covered up a conspiracy to keep me on mainline knowing I had received several valid death threats. Finally I was moved to an institution where I could walk mainline and placed on a "mental health" unit. I am on such a unit because I am a revolutionary. Now I am in a system where often the line between the white power groups and the guards is blurred. In a white privileged and dominated imperialist nation what more could one expect?

Everyone in the Oregon DOC is too busy fighting one another to join together to accomplish anything and it is my experience that there are just as many rats and snitches on mainline units as there are in the "mental health" units here in Oregon. The mentally dead are everywhere. You find them not only amongst the ranks of snitches or rats but, also in those who are brainwashed into believing in the false theory of race or racial superiority.

It is not until whites of the lumpen can realize the privilege the color of their skin affords them in the united states and throw away the doctrine of race or racial superiority that we can join ranks with our brothers and sisters and truly become revolutionaries in the non-violent struggle to end oppression in the U.S. and the doctrine of oppressive imperialism our nation forces upon the innocents of the Third World.

MIM(Prisons) responds: This is one of many responses we received to our article on Special Needs Yards prisoners. While we know that many snitches seek PC status in exchange for selling out their fellow prisoners, we also know that many prisoners get into these yards for legitimate reasons and that there are serious revolutionaries throughout the prison system. At the same time, there are plenty of snitches on mainline so we can't just generalize and avoid the PC units and assume our movement is safe. We must always be on the lookout for snitches who will betray the revolutionary struggle. At the same time we should always be on the look out for genuine comrades who will join and contribute to the struggle. We best achieve this by keeping politics in command. That means setting policies to address security risks that judge political line and practice, not state-enforced labels, rumors or persynal interests.

[Nashville] [Tennessee] [ULK Issue 18]

Long line for ULK

I am at DCSO in Tennessee. One of my pod-mates receives your publication, Under Lock & Key, and it has attracted a lot of attention. The line to read it has become so long and complex, I decided to write to you and request my own personal subscription. I've always been interested in subversive politics and your newsletter gives me a lot to think about. Also I am willing to write articles for future publications in exchange for a chance to take part in your free book program.

MIM(Prisons) responds: Don't get stuck waiting in a long line for Under Lock & Key. Or worse yet, get moved to a new prison where you can't get at ULK at all. Write to us today to get your own subscription!

[Rhymes/Poetry] [ULK Issue 19]

Black is Where the Heart is At

Black-on-Black crime,
I see it all the time,
Why come brothers hurting each other,
instead of loving one another?;
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.
Black-on-Black violence,
I see it steadily destroying us,
Why come Black people keep killing each other,
instead of helping and protecting one another?;
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.
Black people betraying themselves and each other,
Always disrespecting, lying, stealing and cheating one another,
Why come brothers can't work it out?
Psychological warfare, mind control and genocide is what
I'm really talking about;
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.
Brothers not wanting peace and reconciliation,
Only helping the enemy (racism, capitalism, and imperialism) to oppress the Black Nation;
Black love, Black reconciliation and Black redemption is what we work for and need,
Brothers and sisters join in and defeat our enemies.
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.
Black people wake up to what's really going on,
don't be deceived by the integrationist song;
In a white capitalist democracy,
A Black minority will never be accepted or treated equal by a white majority.
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.
Black unity, Black pride and Black power is what our ancestors loudly proclaimed,
Let us uphold this legacy and proclaim today the same darn thing;
This is what we owe our ancestors, future generations, ourselves and each other.
True commitment to the Black liberation struggle will allow us to do nothing other;
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.
Divided we fall, together we stand,
Black power and Black nationalism is our true call and demand;
And keep world liberation as our primary goal.
Let those present convey the message to those who are absent,
_______Every Black person ain't Black,
_______Black is where the heart is at.

Black people, rise and unite!