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Hey everybody out there,

I just got done facilitating a class.  I have another class at 9:30 to 11:30.  Then the rain closet.

I just want to talk about some stuff to try to sell on the internet so I can get some money.  I need money in the worst way, too.  My boss is on  leav4e for a while and I am trying to save the stamps and phone time untill next month.  She didn’t put in 9our hours or anything so I don’t even know if we are going to be getting paid the whopping twentyfive hours I got in July.  Fucking sucks.  Got a raise to 80 cents and hour,  but, 35% comes off the top before I even see any of it.

Sorry.  I am bitching again.  Just stressing about stuff, you know.  As far as selling stuff I have: a paintings on canvas: “tulips,”  “space,”  “chickadees,”  “a spooky tree with an evil moon in back,”  “a big eyeball with yin-hang for the pupil,”  “a city scape at night reflecting on the water,” and, last one: “a shack on ocean front with clouds.”

I can also crochet stuff.  Like, to order.  I can bang out hats in two hours with stuff grafted onto them.  Actually, everyone wants hats with their MDOC# on them.  Also with their children’s names on them.

We get two free mailing a week here, but that’s about it.

Hope to hear from someone soon.

Love: Arline

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Well,

No one’s been killed yet.  No, I have not padlocked or stabbed anyone.  I heard there’s a lot of people in here with hepatitis C and I don’t want any part of that at all.  If it comes down to it, I’ll either hit somebody with a chair or kick them in the manhood.

Anyway, during the lock-down they took our padlocks away and they found quite a few weapons in other pods.  Our pod was the last one they searched, so everybody got ample time to get rid of their weapons,.  Lots of flushing was going on during the lock-down.

Been looking at the town populations somebody sent me.  It’s hard to believe that “Hardshell” only has a population of twelve people.  Must be located in a remote place (really remote.)  Now you got me curious about the history of Hardshell.  I might end up changing the name to “Hardsell,” as in it’s a hard-sell to get people to live there and put it on the farthest frontier island, probably just make it an old hideout for certain people or a place of exile.  Plus “Nooseneck: and “Pelican Point” would be it’s nearest neighbors (30 miles away.)

So Monhegan Island has seventy -five people on it?  Thought it had more.  Guess they don’t get many tourists in the summer.  Sounds like a great place to get away from it all, being so far away from the mainland..

Well, goodnight, everyone.   Can’t believe it’s almost August.

Kenneth McDonald

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Hey, Circle,

Today would have been my Bampi’s birthday.  But, since he has passed on, I guess he won’t be getting older, huh?  I called you guys around 7:30 pm earlier, but no answer.  Don’t know if there is a specific time I should call or what, but I tried and I will again in a day or so.

When I didn’t hear from anyone for a few days I was worried that I had did something to piss you guys off.  But, thank God, just a big worry wart, I guess.

As far as writing goes, I do, or did take writing classes, but I have always loved to write, even before I got arrested.  I am working on a memoir of the Arline Lawless story.

My son, Damien, is doing good.  He starts tutoring on the 11th.  He is a little handsome devil.  He looks just like me.  When I get rich and famous I will send you guys a picture of our visit in May.

I have P.T.S.D.  When a door slams, it sends me into a panic attack.  Guess that has to do with the gunshot wound to the face, but hey, I am also afraid to get into a relationship for fear that the same thing will happen.  I talk to mental health a lot.  I think I might have sensory problems too.

What do you think of that?

Love,

Arline

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Incarceration in the United States is the main form of punishment for the commission of a crime. The United States has the largest prison population in the world, and the second-highest per-capita incarceration rate, behind Seychelles (a tiny island country off the coast of East Africa, which in 2014 had a total prison population of 735 out of a population of around 92,000). 

In 2013 in the US, there were 698 adults incarcerated per 100,000 population, with (According to the US Bureau of Justice Statistics ) 2,220,300 adults incarcerated in US federal and state prisons, and county jails.  That’s one out of every 110 citizens of the United States, or  about 0.91% of our adult population.  That’s not counting the 4,751,400 adults in 2013 (1 in 51) on probation or on parole!  In total, 6,899,000 adults were under correctional supervision (probation, parole, jail, or prison) in 2013 – about 2.8% of the adults (1 in 35) in the U.S. 

Oh, almost forgot: there were also 54,148 juveniles in jail (“juvenile detention”) in 2013.

According to a 2014 Human Rights Watch report, “tough-on-crime” laws adopted since the 1980s, most especially Bill Clinton’s Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (the largest crime bill in the history of the United States and consisted of 356 pages that provided for 100,000 new police officers, $9.7 billion in funding for prisons and $6.1 billion in funding for prevention programs, which were designed with significant input from experienced police officers) have filled U.S. prisons with mostly nonviolent offenders. This insane policy has completely failed to rehabilitate prisoners and many are worse on release than before incarceration.

Rehabilitation programs for offenders can be more cost effective than prison.  According to a 2016 analysis of federal data by the U.S. Education Department, state and local spending on incarceration has grown three times as much as spending on public education since 1980.

Why? Watch the Netflix documentary “13.”

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The Maine Department of Corrections has intercepted more Suboxone sublingual film — thin strips of a prescription drug that are easy to hide and can be dissolved on the tongue — than any other contraband smuggled into Maine jails.

Research by Portland-based CBS affiliate WGME’s investigative reporter Marissa Bodnar found that inmates are regularly trying to sneak in and abuse the drug, which can be prescribed as a treatment for opioid addiction.

Cumberland County Sheriff Kevin Joyce told WGME Suboxone strips have been found in between sheets of cardboard and in the folds of envelopes. Attempts to smuggle in drugs also have prompted the jail to limit contact between inmates and visitors, leaving inmates to see loved ones from behind a sheet of glass.

“We’ve banned cards from coming in,” Joyce said. “We take photocopies of greeting cards.”

Suboxone is a branded prescription drug that includes the active ingredients buprenorphine and naloxone.

Addiction treatment specialists have said Suboxone can be an effective medication to help those battling addiction to heroin and other opiates and opioids, if used correctly.

Dr. Mark Publicker, a longtime Maine addiction specialist, told WGME that inmates should have regular access to medication and therapy.

“Any of the [federally] approved medications should be used,” he said. “We need to develop systems [to create better access to addiction treatment for inmates] and understand, right now at any given time, the figure is over 80,000 prisoners in state and federal levels have opiate addiction and are not being treated.”

Bodnar found that, in addition to the Suboxone strips, heroin, marijuana, methadone, Oxycodone and tobacco, among other contraband items, have been confiscated by corrections officials in Maine jails.

Lethal Dose Haiku

Hi, Circle.

Here’s more on stress here, and ways of coping.

We have a gym here, the only downside to that is there is only space for about three people to do a workout video.  There is also exercise equipment, you know, like the elliptical, bicycles, tread climber, and of course yoga mats and exercise balls.  Once again, there is not enough room for more than three to four people to work out in there at a time unless you are over in the corner on one of the machines.  We have some very dedicated women who work out faithfully everyday here.  Which is fine, but what about people who want to try to get their body back and just try to be as healthy as they can be?  There is neither time not space for them to do that, and if they work, the net day working out at ten o’clock at night is just not really in the cards for them.

We also have a rec yard.  You have to walk to circle twenty six times to have walked a mile.  WE have a volleyball net and a basketball net.  I like to play volleyball and basketball on the outside but not on the inside.  See, I don’t like to go outside because we are fenced in and we have barbed wire on the top of the fence.  I imagine that it is like that in other prisons (!) However, when you have twenty-five years or so left it can be a little depressing.  We can also play cards and buy our own decks, but how many times can you play spades or cribbage?  I mean, it is fine for the time being, but playing it repeatedly can get a little monotonous.  Don’t get me wrong though, I like to play card games.  We even make up our own card games.

We also have a library where people can take out up to four books at a time.  I have read a good amount of books since I have been here.  I have a big reading list also, but many of the books on my list cost money, which is something that I don’t have for such frivolous items.  Women here have televisions, radios, CD players, and of course there are that few that have Play Station 2s.  Once again, I am not one of those lucky women.  I have a radio, but that’s about it.

I love to crochet; in fact, I was in the process of making thread bags with little pictures graphed into them.  I made blankets with pictures, or words graphed into them also.  However,the thing that I like the most is graphing with thread.  I really like a challenge; the more difficult the task is the more I tend to like it.  That’s a big stress reliever for me.  I am trying to do independent study so I can have a career when I am released.  I love to learn new things (I guess you could say that I’m a bit of a nerd.)  I would love to study ornithology and maybe someday get to work with birds.

Lastly, the ways that most women cope with stress here is keeping contact with the outside world.  I know that I try to keep contact with the outside world a lot.  I just wan to know that someone on the outside is still thinking about me.  It seems like to most women here that they are forgotten about most of the time.  That is why a lot of women look for pen pals to correspond with; that way they can feel like they are still loved and that people actually care about them.  I know that having a pen-pal that would like to get to know me and maybe even go further when I get out has made my stress level decrease a hell of a lot.

Write me!

Love,

Arline

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Dear Circle,

I am sending this letter the same time as this one bt by the time gyou guys get this letter I will be getting out.  I have been working on my anger.  You can believe that… it looks like I getting out on the 19th.  I will grab a stick and make aikos.

I know your not a cult.  I never said that.

Be well,

Running Deer

runningdeer1

Hello, Circle.

Well, you probably heard by now that we got locked down at the Maine State Prison.  Recently we have had a spree of stabbings and padlockings (hit with a padlock) of inmates in other pods – not in this pod, thankfully.  They did some major searching in all the pods and came up with a lot of weapons.  We are supposed to come out this Sunday afternoon, as long as no one gets stuck on stupid.  Who knows, it might be a sign of Armageddon.

So, has anyone gone to see the new Spiderman movie yet?!  They changed it a bit”  Flash Thompson is Asian and a nerd, not an athlete, I heard, but he still bullies Peter Parker around.  You guys should really see the Vulture’s costume.

Well, good night.  Hopefully we will be out and about by Sunday afternoon.

Kenneth McDonald

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Political Prisoners

Welcome to the blog from inmates of Maine's jails and prisons.

In collaboration with the Holistic Recovery Project, the Political Prisoners Blog provides a prisoner's view into what's happening at Maine's correctional facilities.

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