13 October 2005
Thank you for writing me again so soon. It’s good to hear from you. You’re right that I don’t really need your news updates, as I do receive the Arizona Republic regularly. Sometimes I am reminded of an article I read a long time ago, and sometimes there are articles from other sources, so its not totally useless. The other inmates would not be interested in your news summaries. They are surprisingly pro-government for a bunch of people the government is locking up for many years. I have heard many uttering pro-war sentiments.
Mostly what I do all day is read and watch my cellmate's television. I can’t hang around in the prison yard, because we are locked down all day. They only let us out for recreation, food, and medical appointments. Recreation is three times a week.
I have never actually seen someone taking drugs or dealing drugs here, but from what I hear it does go on, and the Aryan Brotherhood is involved with it. One inmate asked to borrow ten stamps from me (postage stamps are a de facto currency in here), and I was told later by my cellmate that he needed the stamps to pay a cocaine debt. I don’t know what the attitude of the guards is to drugs. There aren’t enough guards here to monitor everything, so I imagine if one is discreet it is possible to get away with taking drugs.
You have my permission to post my letters on other the Indymedia site or other websites as you feel fit.
There are definitely dangers her, but it would be an exaggeration to say that I fear for my life in on a daily basis. 90% of the inmates here are nice and friendly. It’s a few inmates in a few circumstances that cause the trouble.
There are nine housing units (HUs or “houses”_ on the yard (the Rincon Unit). I am in HU6 or “House Six”. Each house has three corridors or “Runs”, A, B, and C. I am in B run or “Baker Run”, as the guards call it.
Each run is governed by a representative of the Aryan Brotherhood. For my run, HU6 B, the representative is an inmate named Todd Huston. (inmate number 115953, DOB 12/28/1977 ) If anyone wants to submit any kind of paperwork to the prison authorities, even a request for medical treatment Todd has to see it to make sure no one is snitching. My paperwork has been examined closely this past week because Todd is afraid I will report what happened in the recreation field when I refused to enter the lottery the Aryan Brotherhood was conducting. The Aryan Brotherhood doesn’t insist on examining letters going to people outside the prison, however, and so I can be perfectly frank about what goes on here. Still I prefer to write these letters when my cellmate is at work and finish before he comes back.
Todd also collects a tax of one stamp (37 cents) per month from each of us – supposedly it goes to help the white inmates who are being held in the Supermax yard in Florence. Supposedly that lottery they wanted me to enter goes to that also.
I am glad that Laro was able to defy the will of the Aryan Brotherhood while he was being transferred. It would be very dangerous for him to sit next to a black man here.
Thank you for telling me about Kyrstin Sinema. I am glad we have someone in the anti-war movement in the House of Representatives. I’m also glad she sticks it to the religious folks as well.
The television here has four channels devoted to Department of Corrections material. Channel 2 has a lot of fundamentalist Christian garbage on it, but now that it is Ramadan, they have Muslim shows on it so I suppose they let different religions take turns.
I am surprised to learn that all my letters have been opened and read. They did not do that to the outgoing mail when I was in jail, only incoming.
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