In Prison In Texas

A double-whammy:

Long-term solitary confinement produces an assortment of psychological reactions. Few prisoners are unaffected … Many prisoners have been placed on antipsychotic drugs. Most of these individuals are not suffering from the normal, or common, mental issues. They are developing stress, depression, and psychotic behavior that is a product of the treatment, conditions, and isolation they are forced to live with. Many people are unable to cope.

The prison responds in a two-fold manner. The warden and his administration handle the prisoner’s physical placement and respond to any security concerns. The medical staff, which is under different management, deals with the mental complications that result from whatever the administration inflicts on its captives.

The guards walk the runs, provoking, harassing, and subjecting the prisoners to often idiotic enforcement of petty rules, and new, or otherwise never-before-enforced policies that are ever-changing and designed to torment. The psychological staff makes occasional rounds, or walk-throughs, with clipboards, inquiring in an uncaring way about each prisoners’ well-being. “How are you doing today?” to which most people normally just tell them to get the fuck on, or “bump it on down.” …it is obvious to even the most seriously mentally ill inmate in this prison that they are calloused and uncaring concerning our circumstances and the way we are being treated.

Solitary Confinement for the Innocent

The Bush administration does it again. Many detainees at Gitmo have been released – because they were never guilty of anything, merelky subkect to bounty-hunters in Pakistan. Among these victims of circumstance are thirteen Chinese Uighurs, none of whom ever intended any terrorist activity against the U.S. The government knows they are innocent so what does it do? it does what one has come to expect from the Bush presidency – it has locked them up in round-the-clock solitary confinement, something that, according to their lawyers in an affidavit earlier this week, is "rapidly degrading their mental health." Money quote from Obsidian Wings:

These men were captured by bounty hunters nearly five years ago. They are in all likelihood innocent of any crime, and of any act against the United States; they have certainly never been tried and convicted of any. We have held them in captivity since then, away from their wives and families. If they returned home now, their children probably wouldn’t recognize them – and as those of you who have kids will surely recognize, those are some of the saddest words there are.

And now, for some unfathomable reason, we have decided to lock them up in solitary, where we are driving them insane. Even if they were guilty, this would be wrong: having your mind and your spirit broken apart should not be the penalty for any crime. Our government is doing it to the innocent.

Hey, they’re terrorists. Because … er … we say so.