The US treats prisoners inhumanely and is singular in the “free” world in utilizing isolation as punishment. The human suffering was featured recently on NPR’s Fresh Air. Sensory deprivation is cruel and unusual punishment. Isolation is sensory deprivation.
We are prisoners at Pelican Bay State Prison who have all lived for over 15 years locked 23 hours a day in small windowless cells, without ever being able to hug or touch our families, without ever seeing birds, trees, or the outside world, with no programs or chance for parole. California keeps us in these torturous conditions not because of any violence we have committed, but because it believes we are affiliated with a gang, often based on artwork or photos we possess, tattoos we have, literature we read, who we talk to, or anonymous informants statements that we have no way of challenging. We are put in Pelican Bay not for any specific term of months or years for misconduct we have committed, but indefinitely, which in practice means forever- unless we become informants.
Last summer we went on hunger strike – we were willing to starve ourselves to death rather…
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