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As An Incarcerated Person, I Feel Connected To The People Of Gaza

Ten years ago, a friend of mine made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. When she returned, she came to visit me in prison where I am serving a life sentence in Georgia. I was horrified to hear from her stories that Israel was denying Palestinians access to fresh water, arbitrarily arresting and detaining Palestinians, and separating them from their homeland by a towering wall. She shared images of graffiti that covered the wall: markings that started as a protest but, at the time of her visit, had become a tourist attraction. It was jarring to see a spray-painted “John loves Emily” on such a structure; it seemed to me then that a humanitarian crisis had been normalized into a way of life.

Abolition Is A Global Movement; What We Learned From Allies Worldwide

In 1992, formerly incarcerated women created Sisters Inside to advocate for the rights of women and girls behind bars in Queensland, Australia. While other grassroots groups and ad hoc campaigns had formed to work with incarcerated women, Sisters Inside remains the country’s first organization founded and run by formerly incarcerated women. Over the last 31 years, the organization has provided legal and logistical support to currently and formerly incarcerated women and pushed to end policies that cage people, such as imprisoning people for nonpayment of fines. In November, Sisters Inside held its 10th conference, inviting organizers from across Australia and overseas to brainstorm and strategize under the theme “Abolition Feminism Now.”

Building Hope And A Halfway House In Washington, DC

With nearly two million people in prison and an incarceration rate five times higher than most countries on the planet, the United States is the world’s only carceral superpower. Our nation has a long tradition of “justice” that is articulated in a cold, calculating and harsh expression of punishment. Despite this history, a counter narrative surrounding imprisonment and punishment in the United States has also existed — one that is based in reform, repentance, restoration and redemption. Quakers in Philadelphia spent decades in the early 19th century protesting harsh prison conditions and ultimately convinced the Pennsylvania Assembly to reform their model of imprisonment.

Psychiatric Incarceration Isn’t Treatment

The horrific choking murder of 30-year-old Jordan Neely by a white MTA rider on May 1, 2023, in the New York City subway sparked mass outrage, with demonstrators converging on subway stations while cops brought “force and chaos” to a vigil in his memory. The murder has put a renewed spotlight on carceral logics of the state that assume the disposability of Black, poor and unhoused people — in particular those said to be in “mental health crisis.” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul’s response to Neely’s killing deflects from the white supremacist violence and ongoing lack of accountability for the killer, and instead medicalizes Neely’s death: “People who are homeless in our subways, many of them in the throes of mental health episodes, and that’s what I believe were some of the factors involved here.

Violence Intervention Program Focuses On Stability And Support

A new community violence intervention program beginning in Philadelphia this spring connects providing basic needs services to gun violence reduction. Led by the Office of Policy and Strategic Initiatives for Criminal Justice & Public Safety, the initiative will provide returning citizens with wraparound services like therapy, employment and, crucially, housing assistance with the aim of reducing violence and recidivism. Participants attend group and individual meetings for 12–18 months that assist with professional development, trauma, safe housing opportunities and other support services they may need.

Statement On Behalf Of The Family And Committee To Free Chip Fitzgerald

On Sunday, March 28, 2021, at 3:04 p.m., our brother, uncle, cousin, comrade and friend, Romaine “Chip” Fitzgerald, joined the ancestors. For a week, he lay barely conscious in a Los Angeles hospital as he struggled to extend his life after suffering a massive stroke in California’s gulag known as Lancaster. Chip’s strength and dedication to life remained intact as he defied those doctors who said he would not make it through the night in the hours after his initial arrival at the hospital. A stalwart soldier, he fought until his very last breath. Chip died as he had lived: fighting. A Service is being planned which may be in a month or so due to COVID, followed by a memorial. We want to also thank the many thousands who put their voices together to free Brother Chip.

On Contact: The Power Of Classics

On the show this week, Chris Hedges discusses with Emily Allen-Hornblower and Marquis McCray the power of the classics, such as Sophocles’ play Philoctetes, to elucidate mass incarceration. Emily Allen-Hornblower is a professor of Classics at Rutgers University and is the recipient of a Whiting Foundation grant to foster dialogues about the classics with incarcerated and formerly incarcerated men and women.  Marquis McCray is a social justice advocate. He spent 28 years in prison, during which time he studied the classics through the prison college program offered by Rutgers University.

Forced Sterilization Is Nothing New To Criminalized People In The US

The United States has long used citizenship status and perceived criminality as a means to determine whether individuals deserve basic human rights. This week’s egregious allegations of mass hysterectomies at an immigrant jail in Georgia are consistent with the long U.S. tradition of state-sanctioned eugenics, medical abuse and forced sterilizations against those whose humanity the state does not recognize or value. News reports on Monday revealed that gynecologists in an immigrant jail in Georgia have performed high rates of hysterectomies, often without the full awareness of the immigrant women themselves.

Newly Released Video Shows Jailed Black Man Died In Custody

Newly released video footage shows a Black man in custody in medical distress, repeatedly telling corrections officers he couldn't breathe as officers struggled to detain him after he experienced a medical event in a North Carolina jail two days before he died. Five corrections officers and one nurse have since been fired and charged with involuntary manslaughter for their role in the death of a 56-year-old James Elliott Neville, who died on December 4, 2019. The video, released this week as part of a judge's order, depicts events that occurred at the Forsyth County Jail on December 2, 2019, two days before his death and one day after he was arrested on assault charges by the Kernersville Police Department, according to the report.  The Forsyth County Medical Examiner said Neville's death was caused by "complications of hypoxic-ischemic brain injury due to cardiopulmonary arrest due to positional and compressional asphyxia during prone restraint." The Greensboro, North Carolina, man had been revived several times, both at the jail and in the hospital before he entered a coma and ultimately died.
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