Prison Industrial Complex
Tens of thousands of human beings in this country are being tortured and driven to psychological breakdown through mass incarceration.
In every aspect of the US prison system, violations of human rights are common to increase corporate and state profits. The evolution of slavery and indentured servitude is the foundation of the prison labor market and and the kidnapping of our youth from our oppressed communities.
California, the 5th largest economy in the world and home of Silicon Valley, forces it’s prisoners to work as firefighters for 11 cents an hour. Reports from 2015 show somewhere between 30 and 40 percent of California’s forest firefighters are state prison inmates. These same people often are unable to find employment upon release, even as firefighters, because they have felony record.
What is it to be civilly dead? To have no voice or be declared less than a person. Where the rights of your country do no apply and you are left to be exploited at every level.
Forced prison labor from October 2016 through March 2017 by The Federal Prison Industries/UNICORE generated $252,414,987 worth of goods and services. Bail bond companies collect $1.4 billion annually in nonrefundable fees from desperate defendants and their families, too poor to post bail. Monopoly contracts on phone services allows companies to charge over $20 for a 15 minute phone call while commissary vendors profit to the tune of 1.6 billion annually.
How can we continue to allow people to die in prison knowing most serve sentences not for the crimes they are accused of but the color of their skin or the economic crime of being poor?
76% recidivism rate
6 million prisoners can’t vote due to having a felony, 75% are out of prison.
In California it cost $70,000 per year to incarcerate each prisoner and detainee.
“The weapons of empire are always the threat of death and torture and incarceration and dehumanization. And so, when we undertake this, as white people of privilege, we are just adding a little tiny bit to what is ongoing of the struggle of people, where the Doomsday Clock has already hit midnight for them and their children and their grandchildren and the Earth where they live.” – Clare Grady, Kings Bay Plowshares
Racism, implicate basis, poverty, and lack of quality employment opportunities have made being a black male the most telling factor in whether or not a person becomes a felon.