Tag Archive: prison

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…)

The Ecology of a Police State

Or, why hating cops may be the most environmentally sustainable decision you can make in your life

by Panagioti / Earth First! Newswire

The police state in effect at 2013 RNC in Tampa

The police state in effect at 2013 RNC in Tampa.[source][/source]

Imagine being an environmental activist in a world where police can get away with killing young people for vandalizing a fast food joint; where a government’s local law enforcers are collaborating with giant energy corporations to stifle opposition; where a sheriff demands funding for a program urging neighbors to snitch on anyone who says they hate said government.

Sadly it doesn’t take much imagination, does it? In case you weren’t inspired to click the embedded links above, they reference recent stories of these things occurring in the US.

In light of this reality, it’s crystal clear that global ecology will never be stabilized as long as the police have anything to do with it.

That’s right. Stopping the tar sands’ atmospheric climate bomb, keeping GMOs out of our food, and defending wolves’ ability to restore biodiversity depends on getting rid of the fuzz. Perhaps this is the beginning of a new movement initiative that aims to reduce the CO2 parts per million (ppm) by simultaneously slashing the cpms (cops per million). Cops are not only the industrial empire’s first line of defense against, well, us. They are also massive usurpers of the public financial resources that might otherwise be put towards restoring the Earth.

Where the Earth First! movement was once known for its epic wilderness corridor proposals in the ‘80s which became a basic foundation for the future of conservation biology, I think this plan too will shape the face of the ecology to come. (more…)