When I came to prison sixteen years ago

B., Bobby



1) Brothers, and Sisters of society, When I came to prison sixteen years ago I've never thought in life I'll encounter the pure hatred or even racism. Rather it's between the inmates or the officers. As a young 23 yr old African American inmate I was barred from being social with a Spanish or white prisoner and if you spent more than a few minutes conversing with a guard you'll be label as "questionable", "suspicious" not out-right consider a snitch, but one to be watchful with. You see, that's the mentality of people programmed in prison. We're govern by rules and politics that people assume from a friendly conversation of sports or why a decent person could be in prison to now you're working for "the man"? Don't get me wrong or mistaken part of your survival are guidelines of how you live and conduct your self. I don't wish prison on "anyone" unless they truly need and deserve it. I don't wish prison on people that are young and underdevelop mentally. A young man coming into prison especially a maximum security level four "will lose himself" He'll become more than a product of his environment, or what his family and friends remember him as. Allow me to explain the part about "lose himself." 2) They'll forget to laugh, smile, be open to change, accept new ideas to improve their life, they'll become extremely aggressive, dislike people, don't enjoy joking. Each day that human side becomes animalistic. Not trusting "anyone" friends and family plus it'll do harm if he have a girlfriend or wife. Through my years I've struggle not to forget Bobby verses T-Bone. Each day I still make sure to smile, laugh, mentor and encourage the young and old. Despite rules and politics I speak to anyone I wish and choose to. Refusing to give up and give naysayers power over me. I am now 39 yrs old. What I've seen the last five years are very disgusting especially towards African American inmates. And those with mental health. Black inmates have been widely discriminated against by Spanish and white guards from being beaten while in restraints, Black inmates have being given false rule violations "reporting" that they was resisting or they lunge forward towards an officer, Black inmates have went without being fed or that their food is contaminated with stool, dirt or spit. Black inmates while being beaten gets sexually assaulted whether it's a baton place in their butts, their scrotum yanked or kick dehumanize because of his skin color or being too vocal. 3) Black inmates suffer by these white or Spanish guards don't misconstrue me not all white and Spanish guards are racist or corrupt they just don't have a voice to speak up against their fellow guards. Yes, I've been through these experiences and still to this day witness the harshness towards black inmates. I am sadden by this, but I refuse to give-up or give-in to these trials, their the bricks to my foundation that gives me strength, elevation and determination to get home to my family and kids. Brothers and sisters in society, hear my voice through these pages. "Here" in a place of chaos and desolation "the light of Hope shines." There's more educated man in prison along with those who are gifted with talents then officers. So you see, the Department of Corrections fears that. When a prison or yard is thriving, there's bound to be some-type of shake-up created not by a prisoner but the system that govern us. Everything is about money. Create chaos shut down the prison especially when those 4) we call the "important people" about to make a visit through-out the prison. Now the living condition inside of an administrative segregation lock-up building is extremely dirty. You have flies, gnats, small mosquitos flying around. The floors are dirty, the hair clippers are partially broken and dirty along with the clipper guards which are rusty. That's a risk to an infectious skin disease. In the morning from 6:00am to 2:00pm we have seven correctional officers who spend a good time playing cards, gossiping, antagonizing mental health inmates who they dislike overall neglecting to keep their building clean. When the "important people" about to do a walk-through there's alot of activities inside the building. Officers All-of-the-sudden cleaning, offering extra meals to certain inmates to clean the showers, telling inmates to remove any window coverings, remove girly photos from cell-walls. So that's how "I" know when someone important is coming by the officers actions and behavior. My name is Bobby. A man who have been down 16 yrs for murder. I do have strong remorse for what I did. My actions cause a ripple effect to my victims family, my family and society. 5) Being in prison also have allowed me to focus, to breathe, reflect, not to be selfish, remember the person of good value and qualities that people saw in me. And never forget those who cherish and loves me first. (Allow your past to be just that, and never allow it to define nor rule over you. Allow it to empower you.) David Brinkley said it best: "A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him." I leave that with you Brothers and Sisters of society. Sincerely, Bobby B.

Author: B., Bobby

Author Location: California

Date: March 3, 2020

Genre: Essay

Extent: 5 pages

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