Prisoners In Cali Go On Hunger Strike: Who Cares?

“Going on a hunger strike to hurt someone else is like lighting yourself on fire and expecting your enemy to burn. It is useless in the most idiotic way.”

I wrote an article a while back concerning the Gitmo hunger strike. My main point was: who cares? Well, now prisoners in a California penitentiary are on a hunger strike to protest the conditions of solitary confinement. A hunger strike is defined as missing more than nine meals in a row. The strike began with over twelve thousand participants, and is now down to about 387.

According to ABC:

“The prisoners want changes to solitary confinement known as the Security Housing Unit or SHU…St. Mary’s College Professor Ronald Ahnen is ready with a mediation team…’The conditions that they’re being held in is torture,’ said Ahnen. ‘They’re human beings. That doesn’t give us the right, no matter what they did, it doesn’t give us the right to torture them.’“

According to WSWS:

“…more than 2,000 prisoners are serving ‘indeterminate’ (indefinite) SHU terms because they have been ‘validated’ by the prison authorities as members or associates of prison gangs.” There are at least 4,527 inmates currently serving indefinite terms of solitary confinement in these units.”

So, there are numerous prisoners serving possibly permanent sentences in solitary confinement. But does that matter? They are prisoners after all. Let’s look at both sides.

The prisoner advocates say that indefinite terms in solitary confinement constitutes inhumane treatment, violating prisoners’ protection against cruel and unusual punishment. They say being alone for extended periods of time can lead to insanity, which constitutes as torture.

Those in favor of the way in which the prison operates say that solitary confinement isn’t as bad as it is made out to be. According to ABC:

“The Corrections Department insists conditions are not inhumane, pointing out inmates in the SHU are double bunked, get cable TV and daily contact with staff. ‘As far as we’re concerned, it’s not solitary confinement,’ said Jeffrey Callison of the California Corrections Department. ‘Is it a great place to spend time? No, it isn’t. But no prisons are.’“

In the end, I tend to believe the officials, rather than the prisoners, and their advocates. That being said, let’s go back to the hunger strike. Why go on the strike? Hurting yourself—though you are in the care of the federal prison system—does nothing to change your lives, or the conditions in which you live.

Finally, why should we care? Why is it the responsibility of the prison system to force feed inmates if they are refusing to eat? Whatever the truth is behind all of this, I feel nothing for the inmates; I feel nothing for their “plight.” Hunger strikes are an absurd way to make a statement, and the prison system shouldn’t have to acquiesce to any of the prisoners’ demands.







Comments

comments

Posted in Crime, Law, Law Enforcement Tagged with: ,
  • texaselect

    Let them Starve themselves to death, a wooden box is cheaper for California to support.

  • Principled

    The title of the article pretty much sums it up! They didn’t get there by accident and no one is taking into account the vile acts some of these animals committed on their victims!! Capitol punishment would help with the over-crowding issues the prison system is apparently currently experiencing.

    • Mr Bob

      I always enjoy hearing Christians share their demented views.

  • robert1407

    Don’t want to eat, good. It will save the tax payer money.  Beside most of them need to lose weight anyway.

  • ronifer

    I couldn’t care less ! Let’em starve, the sooner, the better !

  • SharonTaylor

    If those prisoners don’t want to spend time in solitary, it would behoove them to behave themselves and refrain from belonging to prison gangs. It’s really a no brainer.

  • RivahMitch

    In answer to your question, “Who cares?”…….Not I!

  • OhGator

    Poor babies. If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime. It is punishment, not a vacation.

    • OhGator

      And for those thinking of committing a crime, that cell phone can be traced to where you are at any given time of the day as to where you are/were. If you think you can get away with it, you are wrong and may find yourself in solitary confinement, or in prison for a LONG TIME. Hurrah ! ! !

  • AmericaNeedsHeroes

    Sorry.  But many, if not most, are NOT human beings anymore.  They are animals.  Somewhere along his or her development; no daddy, an abusive mommy, a missed necessary component of moral development, a crossed neural path – whatever – left these soulless husks less than human.  They are killing machines, most of them, broken beyond repair.  When they take a son or daughter, a dad, mom, husband, wife or other human being from those who care about them – or are WILLING to do so, even if they haven’t yet – when they threaten a prison employee or his/her family; they LOOSE the RIGHT to demand … anything.  They FORFEIT the right to decide what is humane and what is not.  They voluntarily give up the right to ask for more than they get.  They have a debt to pay and it should be paid.  Jail, and especially solitary confinement, is an EARNED punishment, an ultimate punishment, not a summer camp.  Let ‘em starve!  SAVE THE MONEY…!!!  Spend it on education and improved conditions for inmates who CAN be rehabilitated, inmates who DESERVE it, inmates with the intelligence to DEMONSTRATE that they are willing to accept rehabilitation.  Further, I believe if we are willing to make abortion pills available on demand, we should make suicide pills available to prisoners…on demand.

  • Michael Payne

    Here is the sad part, most people think prison is appropriate. No prisons were in the US until around 1830 time frame. Prior to that, if you ripped someone off, you had to pay that person double or triple in return. If it was a capital crime, you were executed. Now, we criminalize non crimes and create a criminal university. Now the idea is prisoners have been driven to crime by society, so society must pay for driving them. A few decades ago, habitual criminals were executed. All of these ideas came from common Law, out of Exodus 20-21 and the rest of the OT. However, the modern approach is an evolutionary attempt to regenerate man. Justice existed to punish evil doers and thus protect society, today it is attempting to save victims (criminals), by a form of statist salvation. Help us! What is the response of most at this wicked system, their own ideas and feelings…. more humanism.

    • AmericaNeedsHeroes

      Michael Payne Have to agree.  And an excellent case in point – if the story is true, and I believe it is, liberal history re-writers notwithstanding – is Senator Harry Reid’s horse-thieving uncle who was HANGED for it.  A pity we can’t apply similar justice to the “good” senator…….

      • OhGator

        AmericaNeedsHeroes Michael Payne I guess we should have known that he come from such kind of stock/family. He is a criminal himself.

  • texaselect

    I am shocked the Liberal Troll Bob Eeeeeeeeeee hasn’t been on this thread complaining about how the poor prisoners have grown up in abusive realtionships and are just mis-understood….crickets……

  • LeonardW Giddens Jr

    These prisoners are locked away for a valid reason. Being locked up 23 hours a day is not that bad. They get to go out in a dog cage for yard call. They weren’t sent to prison for the prison to cater to their needs except, food, water, medical, visit, access to laws and the court system. Most complaints are not legitimate complaints. If you break the rules, you get punished. The only difference in being in prison is, you are confined to a small space and your are monitored and told what to do. There are far too many prisoners that are innocent, they committed no crime out in the world and they usually don’t commit any while locked up. The hunger strikers are real low down criminals and need to be treated as such or they will take over.

  • AndyWithers

    Let ‘em all die, then grind up the remains and feed them to those weasels at Gitmo.  Two problems solved!

    Anybody recall “Soylent Green”?   :o)

  • BobE
    • WatchingAmericaDie

      …and Jerry Brown is spokesman of choice? Nah. You get to lecture us about the 8th amendment when – and only when – you and your commie pork-buddy-turd-polishers come to grips with the REST of the Constitution…………

      • Mr Bob

        WTF would uneducated idiots like you even know about the Constitution? You wingnuts view the Constitution VERY much like your bibles. You pick out the things you like & toss the rest out!