The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards

Carter, Harold Sanford, III



The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards by Harold Sanford Carter III Two tears rolled down the left side of my face. Three more curved to the right. My cry was without noise. I was on the top bunk. My cellmate had just handed me a bag of cakes and chips that the prison awarded us. Apparently as a gesture of sympathy, perhaps the administration was happy the inmate population did not riot. But yes, my secretive weeping was brought forward from the kindness of my captors. The benevolence made me think of my eleven year old daughter and my seventy-six year old grandmother. As I sat upright with the treats at my feet. I remember thinking that I wish I could give the snacks to them. I was contemplating a worldwide pandemic in a day dream of sorrow filled questions. Were my loved ones ok? Why have I come to prison to not to be able to care for them? Why do I deserve this Martha Washington and crispy wedge while my family potentially suffers from covid-19? - more tears. Lamenting is not a common practice in the razor wire jungle. Especially at SCI Huntingdon The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-2 in Pennsylvania. But convicts are human. We are capable of love. It was just yesterday the local media reported thirty-eight staff members and one hundred and thirty six inmates as testing positive for covid-19. The prison I'm in is a petri dish of coronavirus. Still, no one here is dying. - yet. The biggest pains come from psychological anguish of not knowing what is going on. In retrospect of my lifetime, I have nothing to compare this unprecedented experience. Hence my oppressed emotions. I am Pagan/Wiccan. My clergy has been the only comfort to me to be able to digest this pandemic. My priesthood has brought to light the historic similarity of the great influenza pandemic of 1918. In addition, I drink lots of green tea, consume small amounts of sage, and of course esoterically banish anything covid-19. This is how I cope as a prisoner. Every convicts reality is different. Again, I'm not saying we are dropping like flies here. However, the infestation of covid-19 at my prison is very real. The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-3 A deputy warden has recently told the inmate population that four inmates have been hospitalized. All four of these men I know to be elderly. Interestingly, the focus in society seems to be how the virus effects nursing homes. In opinion, jails and retirement homes have a lot in common. When the corona knocks on the door of an elderly care center or thumps on the prison gates. covid-19 has the same motive. To stalk the healthy and young. To kill the sick and elderly. The public needs to be aware that prisons have elderly. These older people are treated like second class citizens. Because of this, I believe the quarantine procedures in prisons are over looked and defective. These are my notions in living in a prison population of over 2,000 inmates. About a week ago a bunch of convicts got transferred to various prisons in the state. The administration told us it was to better combat the spread of covid-19. After the announcement was made a captain ranked officer walked the prison tier. I assume to retain order and answer The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-4 questions. I asked the officer, "Whats going on cap." A question he had been asked a dozen times I am sure. With sincerity he said, "The truth is we messed up. We are relocating a portion of the inmate population to other prisons to better manage the spread of covid. I cant say I know how you feel. This thing has hit us all very hard. I have a nine year old daughter at home. I dont want to bring it home to her. All I can say is hang in there man." The captain walked away from my cell door. S_i_ just got real .... What exactly is the quarantine protocol for the prison anyway? Is it similar to nursing homes? Whatever my captors drafted up failed miserably. Do people realize the staff at my prison are responsible for the virus coming into the institution in the first place? My jailers were so concerned with locking down and quarantining inmates that they overlooked their own covid-19 carrying mobility. The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-5 I am literally at the mercy of my guards. Could this be an act of God? People are always looking for a scape-goat. Could the rank and file over me prepared better? Are they sorry? The cakes and chips, free phone calls, free emails, extra food, free cable television, (yes we normally pay for cable) and the prison just let the inmate population order Mcdonalds. Is all of this out of the prisons sympathy? Or is it their apology? Meanwhile. Entire housing units are infected zones. Our gymnasium is a fourteen day monster of makeshift overbuilt. I know I dont want to go there. Regardless, I have been in solitary confinement like status since March 30, 2020. Since this time my eighth amendment rights have been under fire. This is because of a two week period of not being able to shower and exercise. Lack of exercise and hygiene puts me at the mercy of my guards in the face of the coronavirus. The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-6 I also see violations of procedural due process going on at my prison. My showers, recreation, law library, prison job, programs, and general population status was abruptly taken away. The administration at my prison never gave me a memo or notice that these things would be taken. I have been left in the dark completely. Forty five days without procedural due process. The prison does say things on the televisions. The problem is I dont have a TV and I cant see the TV thats mounted in the dayroom from my cell. The prison has not officially told me the lockdown is because of covid-19. Of course I know it is because SCI Huntingdon is swarming with it. However, it is against the law to ignore procedural due process. In these unprecedented times the prison is smart for not providing me with a paper trail. The hard copies might help prove even more civil rights violations. To boot, I cant even find out what my rights are. I haven't had law library access in a month. The prison should have implemented alternative ways to access the law library. Without notice they The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-7 point their finger and I obey. I am left to be at their mercy. My only weapon is my pen. SCI Huntingdon prison was built in 1889. It doesnt take a law book to see this old castle looking prison is out of code. Truth is, this old stockade makes money. Prisoners make liscense plates, clothes, shampoo, stationary, and just a few weeks ago non medical masks, anti bacterial soap, and medical gowns. Prisoners get paid 19¢ to 42¢ an hour. Its cheap slave labor and completely legal. Best believe the state of Pennsylvania wants to keep this guardhouse open. This hundred and thirty one year old prison has a serious problem with the lack of adequate modern ventalation. The ancient vent in my cell is three by five inches. It is filled with black mold and trash. No air blows inwards or out from it. The air in my cell is stagnate. I sneeze like hell in my corpuscle every morning. But how is a lack of ventalation a health The corona contingency at the mercy of my guards Harold Sanford Carter III 1-8 condition in terms of covid-19? Perhaps it could linger longer. Above all, clean air purifies. Ancient elements have purgation dispositions. If I was covid-19. I'd want to be in dirty air. I would flee from anything pure. Based on this theory, bad ventalation could breed the virus more so. In conclusion, not knowing brings the most hardship concerning being a prisoner during covid-19. Since I have been writing this convict thesis, two more staff and twelve more inmates have tested positive for covid-19. There is trouble to come in the razor wire jungle. Pestilence is no stranger here. This place is like a castle and is very old. For now, this thing sweeps through the health of my captors. Searching for a weak host to consume. If this plague casts its evil eye towards me. I cannot fathom. At the end of the day. I'm at the mercy of my guards. Harold Sanford Carter III SCI Huntingdon Prison May 15,2020

Author: Carter, Harold Sanford, III

Author Location: Pennsylvania

Date: May 15, 2020

Genre: Essay

Extent: 8 pages

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