Gayle Madwin (queerbychoice) wrote,
Gayle Madwin
queerbychoice

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Anniversaries and Prisons

Today is my parents' 32nd wedding anniversary, and my maternal grandparents' 60th wedding anniversary. My grandparents are throwing a big party for it, to which half of Northern California is invited, but the party isn't until Saturday. But anyway, today should be a happy day on the subject of marriage for all my family members. Unfortunately the California Supreme Court decided to use the day to revoke the marriage licenses of 4,000 same-sex couples, which made it not really such a happy day on the subject of marriage after all.

In other news, I made an animated LJ icon today. Anyone who wants it is welcome to use it:



Sources:

12.9% of black men ages 25-29 in the U.S. are in prison or jail right now: Sources

30% of black men ages 20-29 in the U.S. are incarcerated or on parole or probation: Sources

Black men are 6% of the U.S. population but 48% of the U.S. prison population: Sources

13% of U.S. black men have lost their voting rights from felony conviction: Sources

Black people are 13% of drug users, but 35% of people arrested for using drugs; Black people are 35% of those arrested for using drugs, but 55% of those convicted of it; Black people are 55% of those convicted of drug crime but 74% of those imprisoned for it: Sources

The U.S. Justice Department projects 32% of black males born in 2001 will spend time in prison: Sources

75% of black men in Washington, D.C. are jailed at least once by age 35: Source

A black man who lives his entire life in D.C. has nearly 90% odds of being jailed: Source

U.S. Federal prisoners earn $0.12-$1.15 per hour: Source

About 80% of a U.S. prisoner's wages are withheld for rent and other costs: Sources

FPI, Inc. nets over $30 million yearly from federal prisoners alone: $34 million in 2000, $37 million in 1999

Most state prisoners in Texas are paid only in "good time" credit: Source

The 13th amendment outlaws slavery, "except as punishment for a crime": Sources

See, the U.S. government would never have permitted me to be laid off if they'd realized it would give me more time to spend on things like that.

In sort of related news, moominmuppet linked to an article today about how . . .
Forty prison guards wielding clubs and their warden’s blessing went on a rampage against the 33 helpless women wrongly convicted of "obstructing sidewalk traffic." They beat Lucy Burn, chained her hands to the cell bars above her head and left her hanging for the night, bleeding and gasping for air. They hurled Dora Lewis into a dark cell, smashed her head against an iron bed and knocked her out cold. Her cellmate, Alice Cosu, thought Lewis was dead and suffered a heart attack.

Additional affidavits describe the guards grabbing, dragging, beating, choking, slamming, pinching, twisting and kicking the women. Thus unfolded the "Night of Terror" on Nov. 15, 1917, when the warden at the Occoquan Workhouse in Virginia ordered his guards to teach a lesson to the suffragists imprisoned there because they dared to picket Woodrow Wilson’s White House for the right to vote.

For weeks, the women’s only water came from an open pail. Their food--all of it colorless slops--was infested with worms. When one of the leaders, Alice Paul, embarked on a hunger strike, they tied her to a chair, forced a tube down her throat and poured liquid into her until she vomited. She was tortured like this for weeks until word was smuggled out to the press.

So, refresh my memory. Some women won't vote this year because--why, exactly? We have car pool duties? We have to get to work? Our vote doesn’t matter? It's raining?
The full article is here. You should read it. Also, you should vote.
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