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Letters to Our Family (January 2016)

My precious family –

I need you all to know that you have made such a huge impact on my mental stability, my outlook on life, my plans for my future and my happiness. I am doing life in CA. prison and have no biological family to speak of that supports me in any way, definitely not emotionally. I am an incest, abuse, rape survivor by the people who should have been nurturing me not torturing me. But I am no longer the suicidal, unloved, unwanted, misunderstood leper I was convinced I was a year ago. I have the most amazing encouraging supportive family I coud ever ask for, My Black & Pink family. I decided on a whim to put my name on the penpal list. 4 of my B&P family members wrote me and reminded me that I am not alone. It has been so long since anyone asked me how I am doing or sincerely cared about my life. Thank you so much! I may never get out of here but the love you have shared by taking a little time out of your busy life to write me has given me a freedom I wouldn’t trade for a parole slip! Thank ou Arden, Karen, Ariel & Stefanie. You literally saved my life. For those of you beautiful people not sure if you make a difference in anyones life by sending a letter, I promise you, you do. It’s been 11 months since my attempted suicide & I had planned on completing it on the 1 yr. anniversary. Now my plans are to spend that day writing thank you notes to my precioos family for saving my life.

Love, unconditionally
Alissa

 

Unity!

“The world already looks down on us as if we’re nothing, beats us and even kills us. So it should be unthinkable to help them.” – Ms. Priss

I grieve immediately whenever I see division within the LGBTQ community. Because Sistah’s and Brotha’s, we already live ing an ice cold world which treats us (LGBTQ community) as if we naturally have an infectious blood virus. Yet at times we belittle, criticize, express jealousy and hatred toward each other. Whereas we shouldn’t ever assist those who disagree with our lifestyle by harming one another. For we can all offer something different, even identical twins possess different qualities. So let’s celebrate each other’s diversities oppose to an individual’s indifference. And this can be accomplished by someone just like you. Yes, “YOU!” Because we must come together so we can unify our love by caring for one another. Which reminds me of a movie I once saw. Where a grandmother told her grandchildren: “A hand isn’t powerful until it folds into a fist, cause a fist can strike a mighty blow.”

Well LGBTQ community, we have to be that fist and with us standing united we can surely make a difference. For it’s time to stop being a part of a problem but more so the means of a solution. Therefore I challenge you to find someone who’s in our community and give them: a compliment, a smile, and hand to hold but most of all love. Forget about the dark unpleasant clouds (shade) of yesterday by celebrating days of eternal sunshine. Now I’m no fool, I know there’s judy girls/guys in the life who are hard to get along with at times but let’s love them too. Start with planting positive seeds cause chile’, they do grow. So I dare you to pass this paper to someone in our community and give that person a hug of course. Because when we stand united as one we can deliver a powerful change. Yes the world is starting to open up towards us but there’s still miles to go. So once again I dare you, “Yes you” to stop helping those in the world who dislike us by assisting our community by standing together! If you don’t know where to start, if you happen to know of some shade or, shadiness, help turn that shade into sunshine. That’ll always be a good place.

I love all my people and look forward to helping make a difference.

Ms. Priss

 

Dear Black and Pink Family,

Solitary confinement is one of the most commonly employed methods of torture used by the profiteers of the Prison-Industrial Complex. It was a popular subject of eighteenth and nineteenth century literature but not much was really known about it. Useful data about its devastating psychological effects are now starting to emerge from government funded studies and private research.

In 1995, a liveral U.S. Supreme Court disingenuously claimed that disciplinary segregation is not an atypical and significant hardship because it’s similar to administrative segregation and protective custody. Sandin v. Connor, 515, U.S. 472,484. Could the Justices truly have been unaware that the global consensus is that the hole is a form of torture? I think not.

What makes this ruling utterly outrageous is the presumption that administrative segregation and protective custody shouldn’t require dur process. Not all victims of protective custody requested it, and it’s never totally voluntary. “Administrative segregation” is a term of art applied by prison authorities when they don’t want to follow due process procedures. It’s used disproportionately against Black men and LGBTQ prisoners. It’s sole purpose is to violate human and civil rights with impunity.

Every assignment to solitary should be reviewed at least every three days. Protective custody should require the victims consent. Disciplinary segregation should require due process of law. Administrative segregation should be abolished.

Robert
North Carolina

 

Hello Black and Pink Fam…

My name is Lil Kool ya heard me…

Im from New Orleans but currently incarcerated in Texas (TDCJ). Well I’ve been referred to this family by a dude here and as I started getting this newspaper I never once found the courage to write or before I started getting the newspaper I couldn’t find myself to tell anyone how I felt and who I really am because of shame, scared and embarrassment of my sexuality. Well after the recent newspaper with dede from PA and Tammy from GA and also anonymous and Jada from NV. All that went out the window. I’ve never been Gay before or did sexual things with anyone as my gender (male). Maybe 2014 is when I actually found who I am and who Im really interested in (feminine man and transgenders).

So what that label me as world??? Yes I am ya heard Me…All these letters to the family I’ve read really had a tremendous impact on my life. Instead of being ashame, scared of what others might say or embarrass.  I took the honor to be encouraged by my black and pink family through these letters that we read and write. Among each other. These letter inspired me. Not only cause I found myself but because I can now be proud to share my new identity and not be ashamed. Scared or embarrassed. Thank yall for the inspirement. Ya heard me…with the help of these people I call family at Black and Pink.

Sincerely,
Lil Kool

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