This essay was originally published on the FFUP website, about 2006, but the host will cease to exist later this year, therefore we re-publish this here.
By A Wisconsin Prisoner
In recent years there has been more than ever calls for longer sentences to combat the growing fear and rise of crime or criminal elements within our neighborhoods and communities. Not only has inspiring, but veteran politicians used the tougher sentencing scheme as a platform to ignite their political careers and to perpetuate this fear an outcry from everyday citizens which cut across all ethnic lines, whose lives has been touched directly or indirectly by crime, which has resulted in the overcrowding of jails and prisons all around the state of Wisconsin. With a significance primarily focused on the predominantly larger Black or Hispanic or minority areas.
And while more and more young Black and Brown males are being incarcerated for demonstrating antisocial behaviors such as drug addictions, robberies, homicides, sexual crimes, etc., many of these poor underprivileged and under-represented class of people suffer from some form of mental affliction ranging from severe to mild mental diseases and defects. It is these outcasted members of society who can’t afford to hire competent attorney’s for representation to defend them or help them get into drug rehabilitation clinics or mental health institutions to combat the poisonous chemical they have become dependent upon in an attempt to escape the realities of their living condition of impoverished and depressing neighborhoods. The rich rarely serve time in any prison for any kind of crime, as they can buy their way out with hiring a good high profile attorney and receive real justice. America and Wisconsin has a longstanding history of incarcerating the uneducated, untrained and oftentimes mentally handicapped minority who are ignorant of the laws and intricacies of the criminal justice system, so they are provided quarter defenses’ if that, by state paid overworked, burnt out, underpaid State Public Defenders whose main objective is not to fight and mount any kind of real defense but to get the measly few thousand dollars the state is paying him/her and dispose of the case quickly, which oftentimes more than not are settled through plea agreements.
Such a quagmire are realities for minorities who has the unfortunate luck to get caught-up within the American System of Justice. It’s also unfortunate that so many has come to believe in the political rhetoric and media propaganda that’s locking up citizens and warehousing them in these industrialized institutions now called “Correctional Institutions,” rather than what they are (“Prisons”) will solve the problem of crime. This misrepresentation and manipulative power of circumstances as well environment are in my belief the root behind thousands of minorities arrested daily within Wisconsin’s ghetto’s for serious and petty crimes, in an attempt to feed their addictions from drugs to materialism, placing them in processes of legal and judicial entanglement.
I like so many Blacks in the ghetto’s of America was also duped into criminal activities for whatever reason and has served as a conduit for the accumulation of political power and grandstanding by those politicians and aspiring political figures who complain about repeat criminal offenders (primarily blacks). While these hypocrites secretly make millions from the criminal elements of the streets. What realistic opportunity does an unskilled, undereducated ex-con have for success when you have a governmental body that has passed laws which says companies and corporations doesn’t have to hire ex-offenders, Housing and Urban Development can deny you housing, school grants can be denied you simply because you’re an felon, and there is no governmental assistance programs to act as a safety net for ex-offenders. The answer, of course is self-evident— he has no options, he must do more crime in order to survive or revocate himself.
Wisconsin like the Country has taken on the title “Correctional Institutions,” from the root word [Correct] meaning to remove the errors or fault. This very play of words are design to manipulate and hoodwink the masses of society by the power structure and government into believing prisoners are not just being imprisoned as punishment, but are being rehabilitated.
The reality is that many prisoners rehabilitate themselves and yet, even though many are eligible for parole, in Wisconsin’s penal system we remain imprisoned as society is methodically manipulated by politicians and Prison Unions who utilizes pernicious, insidious schemes to exploit and sensationalize with the help of the media those circumstances where an ex-offender gets out and re-offends.
This type of cunning and intellectual racism is superb. America and States like Wisconsin has a proud history of thwarting minority progress; It is not enough that most incarcerated prisoners are disadvantaged, but must be kept in a system of disenfranchisement and slavery for as long as humanly possible.
This is how rural “White America,” and its dying farm industry has been revitalized, and how “white,” underprivileged Americans become middle or the working class, as Wisconsin’s Prison system is predominately 65% or better of Black and or African-American, while 95% of those hired to guard and administrate these places are White. It doesn’t take Einstein to see the system is designed to make profit off black bodies as it has done since America and Western Europe invaded Africa in 1618.
And no accident that the Parole Board and Parole Chairman has been denying eligible prisoners parole, instead opting to give lengthy defferals such as 48 months, 60 months and longer as Parole Board Chairman Alonzo Graham, an ex-police approve these questionable and undoubtedly racially motivated deferrals. No program of rehabilitation and consequent social, economic regeneration can be effectively achieved, unless these depraved and racist tactics to keep incarcerated eligible prisoners incarcerated are addressed by the people of this state and its Governor. This kind of dissipation must be destroyed and removed from the penal system.
So long as this practice and program continues to operate as presently allowed, there can be no real chance for regeneration of minorities members back into society as productive citizens. Wisconsin Parole system needs to undergo serious changes in its policies and practices. In most states the Parole Board consist of two or more members to fairly and accurately reflect a panel that’s impartial in body and thought, however, in Wisconsin there’s only one person sitting as decision maker, determining whether or not parole should be granted.
This policy and practice is merely perfunctory, a sham process whose primary goal is to do nothing, but make society believe its affording prisoners a fair and accurate hearing for chances at parole. Through the genius of trickonolledgy politicians and the Wisconsin’s DOC Parole Board has reinstituted a situation that’s identical to institutionalized slavery because there are no grassroot support or outcries against the practices being promulgated in Wisconsin. No public outcry of the rampant inmate abuses and fraudulent misbehavior reports orchestrated and designed to keep prisoners incarcerated as former governor Tommy Thompson advocated, and although other states that employ loss of good time, the prisoner is allowed or afforded the chance to re-earn their loss time through good behavior, not so in Wisconsin penal system. This time is taken and never returned.
This is much like the slave who could not effectively stand up and challenge his/her slave master. This was true because the slave had no ally to help alter the balance of power in his /her favor.