Unshackled Voices are the voices of people who are incarcerated, formerly incarcerated and people who's lives have been effected by the criminal Justice system. Their stories are a reflection of an unjust criminal justice system and it's effects not only on the incarcerated but their family's and loved ones.
There are so many voices that speak of the harsh, unfair racist bureaucratic system which is born of the systematic racism America was built upon.
Another Death in Prison
by Ken Siegel
Another death in prison.
A woman, some say.
Others, just an inmate.
In any case not a human being.
She hung herself.
Left a note,
Sister’s name address,
Can’t find her.
Is this a loss?
I guess it only counts
If at some point
You are considered a human being.
If not, no loss.
How can any portion of humanity
Not be considered worthy?
I’ve heard that fear of the unknown is a common trigger.
How can we not know her?
Is she a monster or just unknown?
Maybe another reflection of fear?
God forbid, she maybe sick.
Well she’s dead now.
Did we care?
What was her name?
How did she get here?
Committed a crime
Everyone who is here (prison) deserves to be
You know they violated us – society
The rules, the law
They must be punished,
Got to pay.
How can people be so foolish,
as to come to prison?
Don’t they know any better?
You would think.
Maybe she/they were dropped on their head
At an early age,
Maybe molested, raped, or beaten as a child,
You know some type of dropping
On their heads.
Maybe their Daddy beat their momma
In front of them,
Maybe he climbed into bed when the night came,
Maybe when momma or daddy was drunk and shots were fired
Someone young got hit,
But did not bleed from the wound,
It festered and rotted until infection came.
Maybe the infection was brain damage (mental illness),
Maybe drug abuse,
Maybe these infections
Are fixed by incarceration?
Treatment wouldn’t help,
Lock em up that works,
It must, we put so much money into it
It must work. ($35,000 per year per person)
Well at least it offers a broken heap of a human,
Maybe not human,
An opportunity to kill themselves.
Think about it.
Glenna McCarthy recently passed away while undergoing oral surgery. She had recently started working as a social worker after a major struggle getting her degree. Living for 25yrs with HIV and a survivor of everything imaginable. She also wrote two e-books about her life.
I met her on Albion and will never forget her.
My secret dog inside Attica prison Michael Rhynes | TEDxAttica
Listen to this entertaining performance piece as an incarcerated man inside Attica confesses to an audience (including the head of corrections for New York State) about the hidden dog in his cell and various methods he uses to deal with the traumas of incarceration.
Michael has been incarcerated since the age of 23. He is now 58. Michael’s endeavor to reconnect to his humanity through the arts finds its roots in the same fertile ground that produced the Harlem Renaissance. Rising from the ashes of his past, he has produced a chapbook of poems entitled, “Guerillas in the Mist.” Michael co-created and co-founded the Phoenix Players Group at Auburn Prison. He also initiated a domestic violence prevention program while at Auburn. At Attica, he created and co-founded the 3rd Prison from the Sun Theater Group. Michael obtained his associates degree in Arts and Humanities from the Cornell Prison Education Program. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.
Learn more at https://www.ted.com/tedx