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Letters from Our Family (May 2018)

I would like to bring to everyone’s attention, the life endangerment, abuse and torture, I as a senior prisoner, am receiving and enduring at this extremely corrupt and illegal family operated Alaska, Spring Creek Correction Facility. I have been sexually assaulted/abused, by inappropriate touching of my genitals, and an unauthorized, illegal cavity search of my opening my digital penetration, by a sexual pervert female, AK. D.O.C. employee, which of course has been corruptly and illegally justified. I have had my legal filings and other legal documents stolen (4) four different times, and numerous pieces of artwork worth several thousand dollars stolen at the hands of the wife/spouse of the assistant superintendent, which of course is a fault of mine, however that can be. She was removed from the hobby shop and placed in a higher paying position in probations, for lying, cheating and stealing. This is called progress, and is the norm at this corrupt and illegal family operated facility, and these actions justify putting me in a life endangerment position, where my life could be taken at any minute for no reason, by AK. D.O.C., supervisor and socalled staff, and selected prisoners that will later be rewarded for their actions. I will not be the first to lose their life at this facility by the use of this manner and tactics. To all of our Black and Pink Family, take care, stay strong, and don’t give up. Because one battle is lost does not mean we or anyone has lost the war on prisoner abuse, harassment and torture.

Love to all, always,
Earl (AK)

 

Dear Black & Pink Family,

My name is Charles and this is my first letter to our magazine. I am 28 years old and have been incarcerated since 2007. Being bisexual is hard in prison and trying to keep it hidden is devastating. There are risks that all LGBTQ people suffer and face, but there is no other way we want to be.

We want to be who we are and do not want to hide, and we shouldn’t. I am bisexual and proud of that. Prison is not good for anyone, true; but it takes greater toll on us than many of those incarcerated choose to be aware of. An old saying is that “Who guards the guardians and who watches the watchers.” This came from an old Roman phrase that is translated from its Latin form. This is a major problem with the prison concept and its application: There is nobody watching those who hold the lives of the prisoners in their hands; no system of checks and balances.

I am a young man with an old soul and often portray a wisdom and maturity that is far above that degree shown by many people my age. Sadly, this tends to leave me isolated and lonely. In prison this is worse.

On top of being bisexual and convicted of an SO offense, I suffer from a developmental social disability known as Asperger’s Syndrome. It is part of what is referred as the autistic spectrum, however, it is not the same as being autistic. The major difference is that autism is a disability that has a very isolative and anti-social desire; whereas Asperger’s is a disability which displays “normal” or “higher” degrees of intellectual adeptness and a desire for social interaction. However, while Asperger’s patients crave social interaction, there are issues we face with interpretation of social cues. In my case, I have a “high function” Asperger’s diagnosis. I am highly intelligent, very inquisitive, and observationally astute. In prison the traits are dangerous to possess, because the staff really hate it when you maybe—or are—smarter than they are. Oops, can’t have that. Worse, however, is that I am also possessed of a tenacity and persistence that shames much else. When I latch onto an issue, I won’t stop until I am satisfied with the result.

These traits do not make me very well-liked. Indeed, they are very difficult for those who choose to be my enemies to overcome and accept. They also make me rather abrasive and irreverent. I love a good argument, but I dislike violence strongly. I avoid it if it is at all possible. That is not good in prison as people tend to think that you are a pushover if you exhibit control—particularly other inmates.

Prison is unfortunate and is a massive place of suffering and those who run these human sweat shops would rather view us as animals than as humans. In 7 plus years, I have learned that well. Psychologically, it makes it easier for them to disregard their harmful actions to see prisoners as lesser beings. I am big on the concept of analogy as it is very effective. In this case, go back to World War II and consider the racist slurs used by American GIs for the enemy. Japanese people were “Japs” or “Nips”; Germans were “Krauts”. American troops did this as a subconscious psychological defense in order to kill the enemy without feeling the natural distress of a human killing another human. The slur hid the fact that the enemy is just like you. Prison officials do the same: “Staff” and “Inmate”, “Prisoner”, “Convict”… sound familiar?

I have received the Black & Pink newsletter for about a year now and it is always a joy to read. It is comforting to know I am not alone in my suffering. I love all of you. Your strength gives me courage and hope to continue my battle for justice and to defeat the P.I.C. Many letters I’ve read speak of torment, torture, harassment, and abuse at the hands of prison officials. I am no stranger to that! The problem that I see as the biggest obstacle is a lack of unity in the prisoners. Prisons exploit and encourage that. Prison is a microcosm of the “Class warfare” we see in the outside world macrocosm. Without division of people into gangs, clicks, and such garbage, prisons cease to be justifiable because the conflict does not exist. Prison amplifies this by placing large numbers of people in spaces of insufficient size with too little of every resource.

This encourages competition for resources, which causes conflict and fighting. Such activity is how prison officials justify the abuses and deprivations they employ. It is a self-perpetuating cycle and many prisoners blindly participate. The march to the trough, never aware of the slaughter that awaits them. It is so stupid that I would love to just scream: “YOU IDIOT’S. DON’T YOU REALIZE WHAT IS GOING ON!?!”

The problem is that it isn’t just us, LGBTQ family, that need to unite and face the P.I.C. and its cronies. We are strong, sure, but not THAT strong. We can’t fight this battle and win alone. We need allies. We need to unite not only the LGBTQ community, but all those who share the common ground of desire for change and dismantling the P. I. C. Common ground is what we need. I love you all for giving me hope and strength. When I read what each of you contributes, I know I am not alone and I take heart from that. Brian, in Pennsylvania shot my heart out in the December 2014 paper. He stole the very words that I hold true. His letter is a light for me and proved to be the very support I need and still need now.

So, my family, keep your will strong. Never give up and never give in. Your hope is mine and my hope is yours. We are strong because of each of us, but we are stronger together. We don’t have a local “chapter” of Black and Pink in Wyoming, but I got a card from Sage in Boise, Idaho. I am grateful for that. It was a great gift and I am grateful for your care Sage.

Keep strong my family.
Charles, (WY)

 

Dear Black and Pink Family:

My name is Fatima Malika S. I am an African American Transwoman currently incarcerated in Corcoran CA. I have been receiving B&P for a long time, so firstly I really would like to thank B&P for all the work Jason and the family does with their activism always working for the cause of the GLBTQ community.

However, what I would really like to address is a bit different. I am a level One Inmate housed here on a level 2 yard, a couple of years ago this yard was designated a medical hub for transgender inmates, one of only two yards, so essentially I like many others trans woman are stuck here. This could actually be a good yard for transgender inmates but for the fact that we are in many ways bothered and harassed for simply being who are are. This facility is not very conductive to allowing us to really live expressing our chosen gender identity.

We have been fighting tooth and nail just to be able to wear a tank top t-shirt, because female staff (presumably) are bothered by a bra strap sticking out, yet we are not allowed to order more modest style tanks from the womans section of our approved vendor catalogs. At one point there was even talk about the staff getting together and banning the wearing of these t-shirts by any inmate, which apparently has been done at another prison, this is obviously a spiteful and vindictive move as well as a clear statement that “we will never recognize you as a woman.”

According to elements and standards set by the World Professional Association for Transgender health, trans men to present in our chosen gender identity, could be harmful to us psychologically, yet we are not allowed to order or wear makeup of any kind, and when we create our own we are harassed for doing so.

Staff here speaks to trans women in any way they choose, and maintain an air of invincibility. I staunchly believe that this situation is exacerbated by the fact that no one here will take the time to put forth the effort to write the disrespectful and discriminatory offenders up for their treatment. The reason is because no one wants to be retaliated against. I however feel that whenever you do not stand up to these ignorant bullies, you are in effect disrespecting all of the people that came before all of us and put themselves on the front line for us to be able to have what we have coming, and live openly without fear. This is a fight that is still going on today, every day, and every night.

If you are willing to allow someone to walk over you, just for the benefit of a bed move, then your character is and should be questioned. At which point do you stand up for yourself, for your gender. When do you stop disrespecting the people who have been hurt and some even killed for our cause.

So my call now is not only to people in the free world, but also to every trans woman and trans man in every jail and prison across America, Stand Up, no one can ride your back if you stand up straight. STAND UP, be the women and men you are supposed to be, not the one they tell you you are but won’t even recognize. Use your voice, by way of your ink pen. I know you’ve heard it before, you either stand for something, or you’ll fall for anything.

WHAT DO YOU STAND FOR.
Fatima Malika S. (CA)

 

Dear Black and Pink,

What up Fam! Heyyyy dis is Juicy, Ms Juicy aka, you can’t handle the truth. I’m a Sexy Native Queen. Well, I’ve been getting the newspaper for a few years now! And I pass it around to all the (LGBTQ) fam here in Ely. Alot of inmates try to hit me ip on the low to get me to live with them due to my sexy juicylicious body and swag. But I do not put myself out there like that. I get with who I want, and any one who I feel is deservent of my company. I conduct myself very respectful and loyal to all my (LGBTQ). A lot of my homeboys don’t know about my juicy ways yet. But since I’ve come out 5 years ago I do tell all my closest bros. So far they’ve all said we got your back and accept me as a two spirit. I read about all out bros and sisters struggles and victories and that gives me a sense of comfort in here.

I lost contact of my girl Delicious, she’s a two spirit as well. She don’t know that once she left home I became a girl too. She taught me very well and really helped me find myself as a girl, and now I do my best to help and better any LGBTQ that I meet. I don’t care what others think of me b-cuz I am who I am, and creator made me the way I am, I’m hell of sexlicious with my long redish hair. I will not stop Rep’n our family to all my (LGBTQ) Be part of who god made you. Pray and don’t be selfish. You must play your part in out struggles. If you give some one one arrow, he can break it with one motion over his knee. But give him 10 arrows to break, It’ll be impossible.

“Unity”
Much love to yal all.
Your native girl,
Ms. Juicy (NV)

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