Pubdate: Thu, 04 Dec 2003
Source: Houston Press (TX)
Copyright: 2003 New Times, Inc.
Author: Shannon Parker
Note: Editor exception in posting to Digest regardless of publish date.


Victimizing Everyone

By the (lack of) facts from the letter writer ["Pity Them Not," Letters, 
November 13], I can only conclude that you believe that because we are 
criminals, whatever treatment -- even daily lashings and starvation -- we 
receive is not inhumane. What does that person really know about life in TDCJ?

The writer's view fails to grasp the fact that the majority of TDCJ inmates 
are here for minor drug offenses, with no direct victims involved in our 
"crimes." So the argument about our victims living in lesser conditions 
than our own doesn't always hold water. Sure, you could argue that drugs 
victimize the whole of society, which may be true to an extent, but our 
government's war on its own people -- a.k.a. the war on drugs -- does far 
more damage to the fabric of society than the drugs themselves.

The claim of being an indirect crime victim because your tax dollars are 
used to care for inmates doesn't make you a victim of inmates. This makes 
you a victim of the biggest crime ring in the world: the U.S. government!

Inmates are human, and just like officers, there are good ones and bad 
ones. We are not all murderers and rapists. Blanket statements such as 
those by the writer are commonly employed by hate groups. So what do you 
propose? Roadside executions of DWI and drug possession suspects? That 
would save your precious tax dollars.

Or better yet, why not withhold payment of your taxes? Then, when the 
government imprisons you for nonpayment, I'd like to hear your comments on 
the treatment of inmates.

(I'd welcome discussion on the subject; my full address is Shannon Parker 
No. 1159797, 1100 FM 655, Rosharon, Texas 77583.)

Shannon Parker

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