Another Open Door -
When Governor Ducey ordered a “full probe’” of the Kingman riots by the Arizona Department of Corrections, it kicked off a whole new battle on prison management and all those priorities and principles attached to the governor’s agenda. He was supposedly in favor or privatizing prisons but this action could in fact, begin a war that could be won, if pressure is maintained and applied at all the right places. Private prisons are silently self-destructive in nature and damage control can’t stall time from telling the truth.
Although he quickly followed up with comments reassuring his stance on expanding private prison beds, it signaled a possibility that there were major hurdles to clear in order to make this goal happen like he wanted it be as it was so neatly outlined in his playbook, designed by his fellow politicians and lobbyist friends from the private prison world. For certain, it delayed the procurement of additional beds another sixty days or so it seems and that itself was a battle won.
The goal of this playbook was to hide all the realistic horrors associated with running private prisons for profit. The key word being ‘realistic’ and a contrived effort to side step ugly things that are directly blocking his plans to expand their bed size during his term. Dealing with everyday atrocities was not part of the plan. The agency was supposed to have been a quiet giant, a sleeping hulk, and not making a sound. Fire and smoke, along with the destruction and expense of moving over a thousand inmates to other facilities disrupted that hibernation wish and brings the issue right back on the front page where the governor would rather not see it or deal with it right now.
Like the Kingman escape from 2010, all the way through the recent Kingman riots of late, the media and various taped exposes of privatization failed methods, it started a media war, a war he might be able to win but lose some battles along the way. Periodic arguments by attorneys, reporters, critics and families makes defending these failures difficult and draws conclusions that these methods used are almost as bad as the methods used to argue their existence.
Combined with the horror details of gruesome medical procedures and delays of the ACLU Parsons vs. Ryan lawsuit, the public is beginning to see something more sinister than before. Mistakes are being made and those involved are talking about it in front of the wrong people. There are racial tensions, social injustices and other negative dynamics brewing inside these prisons, private or public and the governor is about to have his hands full with questions why he allowed chaos to run rampant and give the asylum to the inmates to run while his rapid deployment teams are gathered throughout the state to quell yet, another riot.