Open Letter to Governor Doug Ducey – A Gathering Storm
There is a lot of furor out there. It may have little to do with our own personal lives but in all practical pretext, aren’t we all just innocent or uninvolved bystanders. Not really. We are all aware of the seething anger out there. Keeping silent about it is not helping matters either. When it is all said and done, people feel they are under attack by government and other socio-political groups. I know you can feel it too.
It appears our personal identities, culture, heritage, religion and our basic values are all being mocked or criticized, even made immoral or criminal. In the meantime, we are dealing with leaders at all levels, state, local and national, who appear to be arrogant, or demanding changes that may not be in our best interest.
For example, on the matter of private prisons, you, our governor remains cloistered, smug and firm on not providing alternatives to our expensive prison system. I think you are wrong in closing that door to reforms. What you don’t seem to realize is that what is happening on the outside of prisons is also happening inside of prison.
After all, these two societies are connected and linked a lot more than you may realize. When we deal with things that are visceral, irrational and confusing, it means something bad is going to happen. Hatred can boil over quickly and without warning. Kingman was a sample of a boil over. Based on the damage done, you can tell the mood of the moment infuriated these prisoners to no end. Private prison can co-exist but it must be a balanced environment.
Certainly we all know they don’t prefer to live this way with chaos and disorder around them causing pain, suffering and consequences that are severe in nature. I value public safety and staff safety. I also favor inmate safety for when inmates feel safe, they are less prone to be violent or strike out to attack someone. Let me for a moment, take the time to deliver an objective lecture of some sort- I hate liars, I hate deception and I hate distorting the facts. A lot of people are like me, they hate people who deceive others.
What is the anger or hate about? It’s about social injustice, fairness, racial hostilities, muffled discussions on border security and immigration waffling, etc. The hate and anger pervades the prison systems today. It’s about perverse policies that have no legal standings but enforced because they can be done with the kind of rancor used to force changes. It creates mistrust, suspicion and detestation of the systems in place. A perfect storm is forming and nobody is talking about it.
Due to high vacancy rates, the agency is hiring the incompetent individuals who have no clue where they are working. This creates tension and more hatred locally and results in our prisoners, [whites, Hispanics and blacks] fighting each other as well as the other races, challenging each other for control and power of their limited territories. It includes burning property and brutally attacking each other as well as the officers, assigned there in sparse proportions and working hard to protect them. It is an asylum today and growing.
Whatever it is that is causing this hate, it is growing in exponential proportions. It wasn’t this way, but it is now. It is getting worse. But there is far more than race. We now are compelled to live tense times with a heavy finger on the trigger. Day after day, we endure the silence that hides the light in the darkness. We all thrust our faces into a make believe utopia and pretend everything is all right. It isn’t all viciousness. I don’t think anyone wants to deliberately want to persecute other people. Sometimes, our leaders are not as bright, productive or aware like they would like to be. They depend on others to give them the scoop of what is going on in their world. It’s a vicious circle and endless tedious world with concerns.
But they have to be bold, they have to avoid the tragedies and mistakes that takes human lives to the edge of insanity or desperation. This can be done, it can be natural if you let your instinct or your gut feeling guide your intuition better than before. Trust yourself a little bit better and listen to those who criticize a little bit more. Don’t be afraid for failure. One should be aware of the rights and wrongs under their watch and do the best they can following their moral compass and their grassroots values.
Our prisons [state and private] are spiraling out of control. Soon, the two worlds inside and outside prison will have something in common. Both will be filled with hate, mistrust and resistance to change. Nothing will be accomplished and nobody will be safe from blame. Right now, as we speak, the prison population is winding up like a tight spring. A wire so jumpy it could snap any moment and break loose, stoking the flames of chaos and release steam like a pressure cooker under fire.
We need to know what we are playing with and that is an unending ever-tightening failed systems and mechanisms of control where control is not the only problem. It’s more of an inner management issues than control. It’s every aspect of treating humans like people and understanding what they need.
You need to solve the problems related to the social justice inside of prisons that focuses on grievances, disciplinary, staff abuse, medical care and mental health care as well as substance abuse treatment opportunities. One way or another, they are going to make us toe the line. Either under a federal consent decree or some other outside mandate by the courts. Tick Tock Tick Tock…. Tick.