Tag Archive: animal rights

Wearing Orange

orangeFrom Mask Magazine – by Carrie Feldman

When I was released from jail, I searched the internet for news stories about my case, curious what kind of mark would be left on my name from the four months I had served. The local paper in Minneapolis had written an article titled “Stuck 3 months in Iowa jail for refusal to testify.” The story was fairly sympathetic, quoting both of my parents and my lawyer, and referred to me at one point as a “hero to scores of animal rights defenders around the world”. The comment section, however, was full of diatribes about my terrorist affiliations and assertions that I should rot in prison. Nestled amongst them was an enigmatic quote posted by my mother:

“Gradually it was disclosed to me that the line separating good and evil passes not through states, nor between classes, nor between political parties either, but right through every human heart, and through all human hearts. This line shifts. Inside us, it oscillates with the years.”

It’s a quote from Alexander Solzhenitsyn, about his experiences in a Russian prison. My mom said that she believed I had learned this during my time in jail.

She was right. People in prison are some of the most heavily classified and marginalized in our society — losing their very names to the categories of “inmate,” “convict,” and “criminal.” I went through that process of dehumanization with women from backgrounds totally different from my own, and in a strange way it reaffirmed for me our shared humanity. I was able to see that people are just people, and they’re just trying to get by as best they can. (more…)

Animal Liberation Activist Kevin Olliff Sentenced to 2.5 Years in Prison

from supportkevinandtyler.com

Kevin Olliff receives 30 month sentence for possession of “burglary tools.”

Tuesday, Kevin Olliff accepted a plea deal and was sentenced to 2.5 years in Illinois prison. The only allegation against him was possessing tools the prosecution claimed were intended to be used to “burglarize” a fox farm.

With credit for time served, and Illinois’ “half time” credit, Kevin is expected to be released in 10 months.

This is a significantly harsher sentence than the one received by co-defendant Tyler Lang, who received a sentence of time served and was released in November. It has been speculated Kevin’s history of arrests for animal rights activity made him a more appetizing target for the prosecution, translating to a longer sentence (Kevin served time in California on “stalking” charges for his role in the successful campaign against POM Wonderful). (more…)

Kevin is Finally Receiving Books! Thanks to Everyone Who Applied Pressure

prison-bible1-95764_200x200From SupportKevinandTyler.com

After a tug-a-war between jail superintendent Michael Waterworth and the (much more reasonable) people above him, fairness prevailed and Kevin is now receiving books.

Thanks to everyone who spoke up on Kevin’s and Tyler’s behalf (and everyone imprisoned in Woodford County).

Kevin’s book wish list is here, so if you have the means, please send him a book (or just a letter).

Thanks again for everyone’s support.

VICTORY: The book ban has been lifted! Kevin ends hunger strike

books posterFrom Support Kevin & Tyler

The book ban has been lifted + Kevin ends hunger strike.

After 8 days on a hunger strike, jail head Michael Waterworth told Kevin Olliff he was lifting the book ban. This huge victory comes after Kevin lost close to 20 pounds over the 8 days. Kevin has now ended his hunger strike, effective immediately.

Thanks to everyone worldwide who made calls, wrote articles, and organized support during Kevin’s hunger strike. While it is always unfortunate when someone is pushed into starving themselves to receive a basic human right, we can say that from everyone’s hard work and Kevin’s sacrifice, this episode has a happy ending.

Kevin at his first meal in over a week at lunchtime on Thursday, and was given a book. He was told the books that have been sent during the book ban will be given to him by the end of the day. (more…)

Tell Woodford County Jail to lift the book ban NOW

bannedbooks-200x200Editors note: Hours after their supporters posted Tyler’s and Kevin’s book wish lists, the jail announced a new rule: books are no longer allowed in the entire jail.

From Support Kevin & Tyler

For over a month now, Woodford County Jail has blocked books sent by family and friends from reaching inmates. This means that not only Kevin and Tyler, but every other inmate, has had zero access to new reading material sent from the outside—we don’t need to tell you that this is a serious violation of their First Amendment rights.

[Unfortunately, this kind of thing is not unprecedented. Read more here, here, and here.]

Grievances have been filed by Kevin, officials have been contacted by liaisons, and still there’s been no movement from Superintendent Mike Waterforth or Sheriff James Pierceall to lift this arbitrary ban.

SO START CALLING. Please contact the jail and (politely!) ask when the inmates will be allowed to start receiving books again. Let them know that you’re concerned about this infringement on free speech, and that you’ll continue to call to check back about the book ban.

Jail: 309-467-2116

Sheriff Pierceall: 309-467-2375 (more…)