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Reply #215: I speak from experience... [View All]

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Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (01/01/06 through 01/22/2007) Donate to DU
Texas Prison Boss Donating Member (30 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-14-06 07:22 PM
Response to Original message
215. I speak from experience...
*ulurking to reply*
Wow.
Were to start?

Ok, first a little background since no one here knows me. I've been a Texas Correctional Officer
for 15 years now and have worked who whole spectrum from low security "State Jail" facilities
to my state's version of "supermax". For a little over eight years I worked in a large "Administrative Segregation" department. This is a high security lock-down area that houses the most disruptive and violent offenders....and I have the scars to show for it. (I've been assaulted numerous times, have worn human urine and feces on occasion, and in 1993 I was stabbed) Take it from me, my state's prisons are far from being "torture". Granted prior to the mid '80s Texas prisons were a pretty harsh place to do time. However in the years since the pendulum has swung back the other way to the point that the punishment aspect of prison is all but gone. Now brazen inmates with little to fear act out in an agressive manner toward staff in ever
increasing numbers. For the last four years in a row for example, assaults on staff have actually outnumbered inmate on inmate fights.

Texas inmates, while not exactly living in luxury, don't have it half bad. Certainly the conditions fall FAR short of the rediculous charge of "torture".

Are other prisons the same? I'm not 100% sure and can only speak with certainly regarding my state's system, but, my professional curiosity has led me to educate myself on other prisons and have extensively corresponded with officers in other states. Thus I think I have a pretty good idea that the conditions in other states and in the Federal system are quite similar.

Of course I don't expect people like the original poster and those who agree with him to believe me. After all I'm an "evil agent of opression". (don't laugh..I actually got called
that one time) However I can garentee that those who make such silly comments have probably never been within miles of a real prison, let alone actual been inside one or dealt with real criminals on a daily basis. Most likely, they get most of their information upon which their opinions have been formed from exagerated TV and movie accounts (there is a reason I hate shows like "OZ"),
scary doccumentaries, and criminal rights web sites like the ones linked to above that have a vested interest in painting a horrificpicture. Once again, take it from someone who has been there...it simply aint so.

The fact is (and anyone who actually works with real world criminals will agree here) that the admitedly restrictive and unpleasant conditions of high security lock downs are really the only way to deal with the most violent and disruptive of the criminal element. People don't simplly
get placed in these things for no reason after all. In the end, they are an effective tool (probably one of the most effective) to keep staff, the public, and yes even other criminals
safe from these kinds of "people".

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