In solidarity, Prison conditions

Hog farms, toxic water, and more toxic prisons in Texas and beyond!

By Keith “Malik” Washington

The pre-eminence of environmentalism in the 21st century is a novel political and historical development. Ecology is a new body of scientific description and knowledge upon which social, economic, political and ethical ideas and practices have become premised. Ecosystem science suggests that political, social, and economic arrangements must be compatible with, and ideally optimize, natural ecological processes. Harming ecosystems is considered ethically, politically, and ecologically wrong.” – Graham Purchase, Green Flame: Kropotkin and the Birth of Ecology 1)

When a persyn says that they are a “water protector”, an animal and plant lover, they more often than not identify with being classified as an environmentalist. However, if you live in the United States of Amerika, you must become an expert in biology, water analysis, and be proficient in identifying poisons and pathogens which routinely appear in your immediate environment, your food, and your water supply.

More specifically, you must actually transform yourself into a private investigator. For who is able to decipher and figure out the complex and conspiratorial relationships which currently exist between capitalist corporate entities who persistently pollute the environment, and federal and state agencies? Government departments who have been commissioned to protect the people, our land, air, and water from being corrupted and exploited by these immoral and unethical corporate capitalist entities. Our planet and our health is in peril and total jeopardy.

What I have discovered is that the State of Texas has conspired with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to downplay and cover-up toxic and contaminated water supplies in State-run prisons as well as the rural communities which have found themselves in close proximity to these toxic sites. It is not just the prisoners in Texas who are suffering the ill effects.

I have also discovered that what is happening in Texas is not unique. I’ve learned of another imprisoned environmentalist in the State of Pennsylvania who is housed at a prison known as Frackville. The prisoner’s name is Bryant Arroyo and he has uncovered the exact same custom, policy, and corrupt government practices in his state.

In a recent essay published in Socialist Viewpoint Magazine, Arroyo stated “In general, Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) knows it has a water crisis on its hands. The top agencies like the PA Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and EPA know about this open-secret and have conspired to deliberately ignore most, if not all, of the prisoners’ official complaints. DEP has received four drinking water violations from the EPA. But the underlying problem is money, money, and more money.” 2)

Bryant Arroyo cites money as the underlying problem. I find that quite remarkable because recently I have been studying the spending habits of Scott Pruitt, the director of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 3) As I see it, Pruitt and his cronies have aggressively forced roll-backs of anti-pollution measures. Simultaneously, Pruitt has conspired to line the pockets of close associates and other cronies. $100,000 a month for private jet memberships, bulletproof vehicles, and bulletproof desks?

Pruitt has been so busy squandering and wasting taxpayer dollars that he has virtually ignored environmental disasters taking place in plain sight! Senator Sheldon Whitehouse from Rhode Island has begun to investigate Pruitt’s careless spending. My question is, when will the Environmental Protection Agency start doing some protecting of the environment?

Hog Farms & Toxic Water

I first discovered the connection between hog farms and e-coli in the water supply in the years 2015 and 2016. I was housed at the H.H. Coffield Unit. Coffield, which is located in the eastern portion of Texas, specifically Tennessee Colony, is the largest state prison in Texas. This prison, in Anderson County, is approximately an hour and a half from Dallas, Texas. There are many prisoners from the Dallas and Fort Worth areas housed there. Right across the field, you can see another large state prison, the Michaels Unit, and it shares the same water supply system with Coffield. This water system has been plagued by problems with e-coli contamination. 4)

On numerous occasions, boil notices were issued by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), but it has been well established that Texas prisoners have no way to boil their water. TDCJ often lies to the public about trucking in clean water when these notices are issued.

While housed at Coffield, I noticed many prisoners had these weird keloid-like growths and tumors on the side of their necks and heads. Some prisoners had recurring respiratory problems and gastrointestinal abnormalities. Then some, like Kevin Wayne Handy, TDC # 1826610, was diagnosed with throat cancer!

There are three large prisons in the Tennessee Colony/Palestine area: Coffield, Michaels, and Beto Unit, and they all have some type of industrial hog operation functioning. The prison agency TDCJ and the TCEQ know that these hog operations are contaminating our drinking water, but because we are prisoners, our health and our lives really don’t matter to these violators of the public’s trust!

It is very hard to comprehend how the medical personnel who work for the University of Texas Medical Branch and provide health care to the prisoners at these facilities have not been able to draw the correlations and connections between particular health problems and the toxic water supplies. Actually, I have observed in the past, while I was housed at Pack Unit in Navasota, Texas, that UTMB medical staff were well aware of the high levels of arsenic in the water supply for years, but they decided to keep their mouths shut!

Lawsuits have certainly been filed citing the toxic water at both Coffield and Michaels Unit, but we have discovered that the conspiracy to cover up the existence of these toxic water supplies extends far beyond the offices of TDCJ and TCEQ. Corruption, collusion, and complicity exist in the U.S. Magistrate Judge’s chambers in Tyler, Texas and in Lufkin, Texas. Something very foul is going on in the Eastern District of Texas.

I am now at the Eastham Unit, located in Lovelady, Texas, and like Coffield, the water is toxic and hog operations are located here also. We have discovered a bacteria known as h. pylori in our water supply as well as another parasitical bacteria called crypto-spiridium. This nasty parasite has effected TDCJ employees as well as prisoners at Eastham! And TDCJ employee Dr Owen Murray continues to lie to the media and the public at large about the water quality at Eastham and numerous other Texas prisons.

It won’t be until the Federal Courts issue a significant monetary award to prisoners that TDCJ will finally clean up their act and stop poisoning the water supplies.

In 2017, the Earth First! Journal published an article I wrote in their Fall issue, entitled Horrific Conditions for Livestock Animals in Texas Prisons Exposed. 5)

I not only exposed the mistreatment and abuse of chickens and hogs, I also began to scrape the surface of factory farms which raise hogs, and the connection with toxic water supplies created by toxic waste from livestock animals!

Recently, Rolling Stone Magazine published a very informative expose entitled A Crap Deal for Duplin County (How China Outsourced Pork Production), by Doug Bock Clark. 6) This article is a must-read for any serious water protectors or environmentalists. This expose serves as a case in point which clearly illustrates the high level of corruption which exists in Amerika and how capitalist corporations such as Smithfield Foods have entered into an agreement with the Chinese government to poison the environments and communities of poor black and white people. This expose will make you scream at the top of your lungs: Fire Scott Pruitt right now!

  1. I took the time to summarise some of the most relevant points Mr Clark made in order to educate the public and my fellow prisoners, as well as my comrades at Fight Toxic Prisons. It is time for us to take the legal and activist fight to these oppressors!
  2. A mature hog whose only activity is to eat, excretes around 14 pounds of manure a day. Respiratory health problems can arise from exposure to manure.
  3. In 2008, a Government Accountability Office Survey found 15 studies that linked animal waste from industrial livestock farms to widespread health problems.
  4. A North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services study found that students in middle schools up to three miles away from hog farms had higher rates of asthma. So it is not a far-fetched conclusion to state that these prison farms in Texas that raise hogs have the potential to harm children living nearby.
  5. Leaks through the clay bottoms of lagoons which store hog manure can spread e-coli into ground water and nearby wells. This point of contaminating the ground water with e-coli has been a major problem in Texas, because the prison agency TDCJ has been allowing this toxic hog waste to be deposited into the Trinity River for decades, and they actually just allow the waste to seep into the ground. And the EPA ignores this!
  6. Hog waste has not been proved to correlate with cancer, but researchers at Duke University in North Carolina are currently conducting wide-ranging studies into possible links. Texas A&M University students often come to prisons in Texas to study horses and engage in other agriculture-related projects, but for some reason the aggies won’t help discover the connections between these toxic factory farms and our contaminated water supplies! Way to go aggies!
  7. Shane Rogers, a professor at Clarkson University and former EPA engineer, has studied this particular issue extensively, and he says “a wide body of research shows that living near pig farms can be hazardous to people’s health.” 7)

Who is liable?

When I first began to do my own research as to who was responsible for the abuse and mistreatment of livestock animals in Texas Prisons, my focus was on uncovering what companies or individuals were buying eggs and hog meat from TDCJ. My free-world friends and I were provided misleading information and deceptive lies by a TDCJ employee named Jane Goolsby, who works for the TDCJ Manufacturing, Agribusiness, and Logistics Division, Planning and Research Department. TDCJ does not sell eggs or pork meat to anyone – it is the agency’s ‘shell corporation’, Texas Correctional Industries, that does all the for-profit business which exploits free prison labor, but of course that is another can of worms.

I have now found out exactly who is responsible for the abuse of the hogs and chickens and who is responsible for the contamination of our water supplies!

Bobby Lumpkin is the Director of TDCJ’s Manufacturing, Agribusiness, and Logistics Division.

Allow me to briefly detail a few of his responsibilities as they relate to livestock operations: “manages the commercial cow herds and stocker operations, broodmare and horse development operations, laying hen operations, farrow-to-finish swine operations, feed production facilities and meat packing plants”. 8)

If Lumpkin’s hogs are poisoning our water supplies, which in turn are causing us serious health problems which last for years, then we have found the person and the TDCJ department which is liable! It is time we re-craft and amend our list of culpable defendants to include Mr Bobby Lumpkin (remember that name).

Connecting the dots!

In the age of Trumpism, I’ve noticed that the Federal and State governments in Amerika relish the opportunity to abuse, exploit and mistreat the nation’s most vulnerable, disenfranchished and oppressed populations. Toxic prisons like Eastham in Texas and Frackville in Schuylkill County in Pennsylvania are no longer the exception, they are the norm. We, the prisoners who inhabit these institutions, are mostly black, latinx, and poor white human beings.

We have been the victims of rare diseases such as Polycythemia Vera (PV). Bryant Arroyo found this disease to be quite prevalent in Frackville. 9)

At Eastham, we are plagued by multiple problems which affect our water quality. The pipes at Eastham were installed in 1953 when lead pipes and lead base solder were used quite liberally in plumbing projects. In 1986, lead pipes and lead base solder were outlawed by the EPA. The State of Texas has refused to spend the money to completely replace these corroded and deteriorated pipes which continue to leak high levels of copper and lead into our water supply at Eastham.

And then there is the hog operation!

The Fight Toxic Prisons campaign is real, and I am one of an ever-growing number of imprisoned correspondents and environmentalists who have dedicated themselves to this fight. I end this essay with a final quote from Graham Purchase, who describes some of the work of Peter Kropotkin:

“Peter Kropotkin (1842-1921) is a leading historical and philosophical figure in the early development and emergence of environmentalism. Kropotkin’s major works were all republished and discussed in the 1970s such that his late 19th century ideas and insights influenced and shaped the direction and definition of the early-modern environmental movement. Kropotkin was the first person to mould proto-ecological concepts within the then fledgling fields of economics, agricultural science, conservation- ism, ethology, criminology, city planning, geography, geology and biology into a coherent new scientific outlook combined with a radical political or social ecological program for rejuvenating society and our relationship with the Earth.”10

Few people realize that in a small solitary confinement cage inside a Texas prison dwells the spirit and legacy of the anarchist Kropotkin! Let us all continue to fight to preserve and protect our planet Earth! Dare to struggle, dare to win, all power to the people!

Keith “Malik” Washington is co-founder and chief spokesperson for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement, a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, an activist in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign and deputy chairman of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party Prison Chapter. Read Malik’s work at ComradeMalik.com. Send our brother some love and light: Keith “Malik” Washington, 1487958, Eastham Unit, 2665 Prison Rd 1, Lovelady TX 75851.

  1. Green Flame: Kropotkin and the Birth of Ecology by Graham Purchase

  2. Frackville Prison’s Systemic Water Crisis by Bryant Arroyo, published at fighttoxicprisons.org and in Socialist Viewpoint, Jan/Feb 2018.

  3. EPA Chief Spent Millions on Security and Travel by Michael Biesecker, (Associated Press), published in El Paso Times-Newspaper, April 8 2018

  4. Prison officials, ACA inspectors ignore contaminated water in Texas prisons by Keith “Malik” Washington, published in the San Francisco Bay View, October 21 2015.

  5. Horrific Conditions for Live-Stock Animals in Texas Prisons Exposed by Keith “Malik” Washington, published at fighttoxicprisons.org and in the Earth First! Journal, Fall 2017.

  6. Why Is China Treating North Carolina Like the Developing World? by Doug Bock Clark, Rolling Stone Magazine, March 22-April 5th 2018

  7. All points ibid.

  8. TDCJ Directory – Manufacturing, Agribusiness and Logistics Division

  9. Frackville Prison’s Systemic Water Crisis by Bryant Arroyo

  10. Green Flame: Kropotkin and the Birth of Ecology by Graham Purchase

Advertisements
Standard
In solidarity

A Feminist Always!

By Keith ‘Malik” Washington

Revolutionary Greetings Comrades! I m 6’4” 240lbs — I am a devout muslim and anti-imperialist who embraces ecosocialism. I am a close comrade and friend to many anarchists and anti-fascists. Could I be a feminist?? Well, yes! In fact, I AM A Feminist!! It did not happen over-night, first I had to come to the understanding that a womyn was more than her physical attributes, I had to force myself to look her in the eye when I spoke to her and sometimes still find that difficult. Then I had to come to the realization that a womyn’s intellect was just as sharp f not sharper than any mans. Then I embraced the reality that from a revolutionary perspective, a womyn could stand shoulder to shoulder with me, armed with an AK-47 or carrying a mega-phone/microphone leading the masses in battle. Sometimes the ‘battle’ may be political or ideological and at times the battle may be a military confrontation in a urban concrete jungle or in a foreign land where the imperialist oppression has decided to set up shop. Don’t underestimate wimmin!!

As a racially mixed humyn being, living in Amerikkka and trapped in one of the many Amerikan gulags and slave kamps, I know how it feels to have your voice silenced. I know how it feels to be abused and when you cry out for help to be ignored. I know that feeling. That is why I began a #metoo project inside Texas prisons. I have discovered that there thousands of poor black, latina, and white wimmin in Texas who have been thrown away by the state of Texas!

Many sit in the comfort of their living rooms and watch the TV program, ‘Orange is the New Black’ and they think that this is a realistic depiction of prison lives. You are sadly mistaken!!! Hollywood like the corporate mainstream media in Amerika, is in a relationship with the ruling elite of the United States of Amerikkka!

What you are seeing in your living rooms is a little bit of truth mixed with a whole lot of LIES. There are journalists and activists who are out there who are doing their best to propagate the Truth, although you may not know them!! Victoria Law, Marcy Wheeler, Kamala Kelkar, Raven Rakia, Noelle Hanrahan, and Asha Bandele to name a few. There are more, many more but the Truth is hard to find in Trump’s Amerikkka!! But you don’t hear me.

A lot of people think they know me, they think they know how I think, what my strategies are or my aspirations. There are very few people who have a clue what I’m really about. But this piece is not about me, it is about me introducing you to a couple feminist warriors who have gone on to join the ancestors. The mainstream capitalist pigs won’t tell you this side of the story!

Lately, I have had the pleasure of interesting and organizing with comrades from the Revolutionary Abolitionists Movement (RAM). They helped introduce me to the grassroots feminist/anarchist and socialist revolution of the inhabitants of Rojava. Rojava is the autonomous Kurdish region in Northern Syria. I personally support these comrades because they have been on the front-lines against ISIS better known as the Islamic State! And for those who really know me, they know that I DO NOT SUPPORT ISIS IN ANY WAY!

Recently, a beautiful, intelligent, and passionate warrior of the people’s internationalist volunteer named Anna Campbell was killed in Syria. Anna was fighting alongside her comrades who are a part of the Women’s Protection Units (YPJ) in defense of Afrin.

Anna was killed by Turkish forces. Anna was a dedicated feminist, social justice and environmental campaigner known to members for her activism around the student occupation movement, ecological and community outreach projects in the United Kingdom specifically Bristol and Sheffield. Anna was a key organizer in the IWW’s IWOC group, and also involved with the Empty Cages Collective, Smash IPP and Bristol ABC.

If any of you know anything about me then you will understand why I am honoring this dedicated Servant of the People. And if you consider yourself a feminist then it should not be hard for you to share this brief essay and take moment to reflect and meditate on the life, death, and revolutionary work of Anna. More of us should aspire to be like her! You won’t be reading about Anna’s life in the New York Times, Cosmopolitan, or Wall Street Journal.

The next feminist warrior I will honor here is Brazilian politician and activist named Marielle Franco. On March 14th 2018, Marielle was murdered with her driver in Rio de Janeiro. Marielle had just spoken at an event aimed at empowering black wimmin. In 2016, Marielle was elected to city council, she campaigned against police brutality, in fact, Marielle was an expert on police violence.

Marielle Franco was not just murdered, she was assassinated! You must understand and know that Marielle vigorously opposed and strongly criticized acting Brazilian President Temer’s military and federal police take-over of security in Rio’s slums also known as ‘favelas’. Marielle had recently been chosen to be the speaker of the commission which is examining the deployment of federal security forces into Rio’s favelas.

This is becoming a pattern that we are seeing all over the world. Fascism is becoming the status-quo and norm. When freedom fighters and servants of the people come on the scene and start to speak Truth to power and challenge the oppressive practices and policies, these valiant fighters become marked for death or imprisonment. Trump and his US Attorney General, Jeff Sessions is laying the groundwork for similar campaigns of repression, right here on the streets in Amerika where wimmin and men of all genders and races are challenging the Trump’s Administration’s bigoted and racist immigration policy.

I must tell you that tens of thousands of people in Rio de Janeiro and other cities across Brazil demonstrated in the days following Marielle’s killing. They demanded answers and got none.

Marielle had a sister that she left behind named Anielle and she said: “I’m seeking justice with blood in my eyes.” A banner at a mass protest in Rio on March 21st read: “WOMAN, MOTHER, REVOLUTIONARY, FEMINIST, BLACK LESBIAN, FIGHTER ALWAYS”. This is how Marielle Franco will be remembered!!

A long time ago, when I was a young man, my mother told me: “You know Malik, the hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world.” Back then, I didn’t have a clue what the hell she was talking about. However, today as I observe this arrogant buffoon in the white house and how he flaunts his power in such a way that shows us what he is all about, I see ‘rude awakening’ coming in November 2018 for him and all his cronies both the complicit wimmin and males!!

So wimmin in Amerika most certainly have the power to change the political landscape in Amerika and possibly even the world but the question that keeps me and many others dedicated revolutionaries awake at night– “Will they give socialism a chance?” Or will they be fooled once again by the false purveyor of “hope and change?” Only time will tell.

 

Dare to struggle, dare to win, All power to the people!!

 

Standard
In solidarity

Teaching Love Not Hate

By Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

As-salamu-alaykum and peace and blessings to ALL!

A couple weeks ago I released a message criticizing the United States and Israeli governments ‘calculated genocide’ which they have begun to force upon Palestinian People in Gaza and beyond.

There were statements that I made which could be construed as hate speech. These points were brought to my attention by a Marxist Scholar who happens to be my mentor and friend.

In keeping with the practice of self-criticism/criticism I will address my wrong statements. I take ownership of my mistake and ask that all of you forgive me for sowing seeds of hate and allow me to rectify this. Although I am angry and frustrated over the situation I must hold myself strictly accountable for my words and my actions. I am a humyn rights activist and not a ‘War Monger’ or promoter of violence. There is a huge difference between advocating ‘Self-defense’ and engaging in acts of indiscriminate violence.

One specific point which needs addressing is my suggestion that the post World War II issue of Jewish refugees might have been solved by actually annexing “a portion of German” rather than occupying Palestine. On multiple levels this statement that I made is flawed and I officially retract it!!!

First, condemning colonization in one place does not justify it in another place.

Secondly, I placed a ‘collective guilt’ on ALL German people. This is historically incorrect and perpetuates hate. I WAS WRONG!!

From my studies I learned of numerous German people who risked their lives to save Jewish humyn beings from Nazis! In my own work as a humyn rights activist and abolitionist some of my most ardent and dedicated supporters are German and Austrian comrades.

These are Objective Facts! I allowed my Subjective Feelings to cloud my judgement. Now that we have that taken care of, allow me to tell all of you a little about myself because more and more people have been asking: “Who is this guy Comrade Malik?”

I am the product of a union between a beautiful and intelligent Jordanian womyn with Palestinian roots (my ummi) and a wonderful and hard working New Afrikan/Latino man (my baba.) Both my parents are deceased. Like many Islamic households throughout the world “LOVE” for our fellow humyn beings was taught in our home.

As a teenager, I worked for Palestinian Immigrants who owned a pizza shop and a “Greek” restaurant located in a predominantly Jewish part of town in Pittsburgh, PA< USA, My employer, Imad, was well respected and like by all. Even though we were Muslims serving mostly Jewish people in a Jewish part of town, we never had feelings of hatred. We often laughed how people ran to eat our “Greek” cuisine which consisted of: baba ghanoush, humas with pita break, tabuli salad, falafel balls with tahini sauce, baklava, and lamb meat gyros!!! Of course I had a dream job for those who enjoy Middle Eastern delicacies which our many patrons perceived to be “Greek.”

So like many of you reading this message my heart breaks to see my Palestinian Sisters and brother being executed by the IDF. I am also troubled by the violence perpetrated by my own Palestinian sisters and brothers. Our Holy Prophet(SAW) did not teach us to act like this. However, Palestinian blood runs through my veins. My mother’s parents were from Ramallah!! So of course I have an issue with Zionists!! The Amerikan Media and Press Corps plays down the atrocities perpetrated by the Israeli Army (IDF) against innocent unarmed Palestinian People. I LOVE PLESTINIAN PEOPLE Let’s make that perfectly clear. I must instruct and advise my sisters and brothers in a manner that preserves their lives and promotes our struggle in a positive manner. The world is watching! Senseless acts of violence against Israeli citizens is not going to help garner world support for our cause and whoever is promoting this mode of thinking is not thinking or acting rationally. If we are serious about developing a state of our own which provides economic stability and freedom as well as justice and equality for all, we must get serious about teaching the Palestinian Youth the precepts of Socialism and Marxist Theory!

However, the conditions on the ground are such that many young Palestinians are being slaughtered like sheep by the Israeli army and ‘Secret’ Israeli Intelligence Units from the MOSSAD. The wholesale murder of humyn beings must be stopped on both sides now if we are to make any progress. Then and only then can we try to develop the financial resources to fund the education of our leaders of tomorrow and encourage our youth to return to our Palestinian homeland and help build a state we can all be proud of.

I envision a sovereign Palestinian enclave which has businesses of export and import, quality schools, Mosques, Churches, and Synagogues, and a Palestinian Police Force and Palestinian Army that is fully equipped to protect the sovereignty of our citizens.

But the key to our future success in Palestine is the YOUTH!! Nevertheless, we face some harsh realities. I recently was studying information posted on the website electronicintifada.net here is what I found:
“Some 1,300 Palestinian prisoners participated in a hunger strike starting in April 2017, they demanded basic improvements to their prison conditions, including access to public phones, air conditioning and heating. They also protested systematic medical negligence, solitary confinement, reduction in family visits, and the common use of administrative detention which is the draconian policy by which Palestinians are routinely held without charge or trial by indefinitely renewable military orders.”

Sisters and brothers it is 2018 and not much has changed. As I sit crafting this message in an Amerikan Prison in Texas, so many of these demands I can personally relate to!! I am half a world away and yet these conditions I face in the so called “Land of the Free” resonates with me!

I want so much for my Palestinian Sisters and Brothers. I want them to have access to a quality education, clean and safe drinking water, I want them to be able to interact with their Loved Ones outside of an Israeli Prison, I’ve come to the realization that in all of our interactions whether in the World or even in cyberspace we must proceed with hikmat (wisdom), sabr (patience), and LOVE. I’d like to remind all of you what our Holy Prophet (SAW) taught us in terms of preserving humyn life!! And remember Allah’s promise to the believers in Quran Surah 23 Ayats 1 and 2!! IQROH!!!

I would really enjoy hearing from many of you, please write me at the address posted. I leave you all in peace!

Dare to Struggle, Dare to win, All Power to the People!

Keith ‘Malik’ Washington is a humyn rights activist currently incarcerated in Texas. He is a co-founder and chief spokespersyn for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement. Malik is a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) and he is the Deputy Chairman of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party (Prison Chapter). Malik has been instrumental in calling for the abolition of legalized slavery in Amerika and is very active in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign. You can view his work at comrademalik.com or write him directly at:

Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington

TDC #1487958

Eastham Unit

2665 Prison Rd. #1

Lovelady, Texas 75851

Standard
In solidarity

#MeToo Stories from Inside Texas Prisons

By Comrade Keith Malik Washington

Peace and Blessings, Sisters and Brothers!

The state of Texas and prison officials who work for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) do not want you to read this essay. They want you to continues to accept the deceptions and lies they feed you about their so called criminal justice system.

A #MeToo project in Texas prisons is taking off; wimmin who are housed inside facilities operated by TDCJ are ready to begin telling their stories, and these will be coming out in the following weeks and months.  You may be surprised to know the pervasive and systemic problem of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and abuse of wimmin inside TDCJ prisons. Allow me to explain.

In early 2014 I was housed at Wynn Farm’s medium custody unit, after spending the prior year at the same facility but in the Ad-Seg unit. The warden there, Kevin Mayfield, was known to hate prisoners and created an atmosphere in which TDCJ officers felt comfortable mistreating and abusing them.  He also demonstrated erratic behavior, and there were whispers of alcohol addiction circulating widely (though these could be unconfirmed rumors).

But Mayfield’s abuse wasn’t restricted to prisoners; he also made inappropriate sexual overtures and advances to a commissary employee named Ms. Duke.  This was only the beginning, and he was about to get a dose of karma. The state of Texas ordered an audit of state-issued Blackberry phones. Warden Mayfield was one of the employees chosen to have his Blackberry searched, and was found to have sexually explicit images on his state-issued device.

Some say he had photos of his secretary on the phone.  Some say he had photos of children on his phone. But apparently, he had something inappropriate because Mayfield was fired in 2014!  Not long after this, he attempted to take his own life.

For those of you who doubt the validity of or the veracity of my allegations, I encourage you to question Senator John Whitmire.  Better yet, ask TDCJ”s new public information officer Jeremy Desel! Or better yet, do your own online research concerning the corrupt and unscrupulous agency.

But the problem goes way beyond Mayfield.  TDCJ has a serious problem with ignoring sexual harassment in the workplace. It is time to expose these issues and rectify the problem now.  Wimmin are not sex objects; they are human beings deserving of dignity and respect!

In 2015, Sergeant Eddie Collins was working as a shift supervisor at the Pack Unit located in Navosta.  I was only there for approximately 120 days in 2015 but in that short time I observed Collins be charged with sexual harassment and sexual misconduct and not a damn thing happened!  How do you think his victims felt? I remember the female TDCJ employees who were victims to Collins’ unwanted advances but I will preserve their anonymity out of respect.

Here at Eastham Unit, there have been numerous allegations of gender-based discrimination and misconduct, and one Lieutenant was recently fired for sexual harassment.  But how many more have not been held accountable and gotten away with their bad behavior?

And if this is how female staff are treated, how do you think our incarcerated sisters are treated??  You see sisters and brothers there is an uneven power dynamic which exits within these prison walls. Ranking officers are given a lot of responsibility and authority.  Many abuse that authority and enforce their will upon subordinate employees and prisoners alike. The office of the Inspector General is supposed to thoroughly investigate claims of sexual abuse or harassment in the workplace and of the prisoners housed in TDCJ facilities.  However, I have observed that the IG performs half-hearted and lackluster investigations and many times the sexual predators in GREY continue on when there is more than enough evidence to have them convicted in a court of law!

There are many different shades and colors to changing the culture inside TDCJ.  However, let it be known to all that the ultimate culture change for me and other abolitionists in Texas and beyond is to CLOSE ALL PRISONS!!!

But until then, we will fight for the humyn and civil rights of all prisoners.  This is why I will be helping to amplify the voices of the wimmin in Texas prisons.  With free world #MeToo exposures many times the victims were harassed, threatened, ostracized or punished!  Look at what is happening with President Trump and Stormy Daniels! If that’s what happens out in the free world, just imagine the retaliation our incarcerated sisters are risking by speaking up.  So it is our responsibility to support them and have their backs when they do!!

If the stories I just told got your attention, just wait until our incarcerated sisters in Texas start to tell you their stories!  Y’all gon learn today!

Dare to struggle, dare to win!  All power to the people!

———-

Keith ‘Malik’ Washington is a humyn rights activist currently incarcerated in Texas. He is a co-founder and chief spokespersyn for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement. Malik is a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC) and he is the Deputy Chairman of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party (Prison Chapter). Malik is part of the movement to abolish legalized slavery in Amerika and is active in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign. You can view his work at comrademalik.com or write him directly at:

Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington

TDC #1487958

Eastham Unit

2665 Prison Rd. #1

Lovelady, Texas 75851

Standard
Prison conditions

Muslims & Jews in Texas Prisons need Legal Aid!

By Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

Peace and blessings sisters and brothers!

I want to take this time to clarify some important issues regarding the recent dismissal of my lawsuit which relates to the growing of our Beards and the wearing of Kufis and Yarmulke prayer caps inside facilities operated by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) (reference: Keith Washington v. Bryan Collier, et al. Civil Action No: 6:16-cv-1139-RC-JDL)

First, I want to state for the record that the Albritton Law Firm located in Longview, Texas has exceeded all of my expectations in regards to this lawsuit. We won on many issues and forced policy change which promotes a more inclusive, diverse, and tolerant environment inside Texas prisons.

Allow me to describe this in more detail in order to provide a clearer picture:
#1 With regard to the beard issue, TDCJ now has a policy which permits all prisoners to grow a fist length religious beard upon request. This includes Muslims and Jewish prisoners.
#2 TDCJ no longer requires prisoners to shave our beards on an annual basis! (This policy change was a direct result of this litigation.)
#3 In reference to the Kufi and Yarmulke issue; TDCJ now has a policy which permits all Muslims and Jews to wear religious headgear throughout all TDCJ facilities. However, the Attorney General of Texas and TDCJ interjected some deceptive language!! The only Kufi and Yarmulke we can wear must be purchased from the prison commissary!! I have a serious problem with this new policy and so should you. Here’s why: 70% of the prisoners housed in facilities operated by TDCJ are indigent – they have no money and TDCJ refuses to pay or compensate
prisoners for the labor they perform.

So the question presents itself: “If we have no money, how can we purchase a Kufi or Yarmulke and enjoy the Tenets of our faith?”
Sisters and brothers, TDCJ and the state of Texas cannot craft a policy which discriminates against prisoners who are indigent or have no money!! Moreover, there are hundreds if not thousands of Muslim and Jewish prisoners in Texas who have received approved Kufis and Yarmulkes for free (no charge) from non-profit religious organizations. We have these items in our possession but Texas in trying to monetize our right to practice our faith and extorting our family members!
The new policy on religious headgear is blatantly discriminatory and violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. We also may have a 1st Amendment – Free Exercise Clause Violation here. This specific issue was outside the scope of Albritton’s representation of me in this particular civil lawsuit. With that said, other prisoners are stepping up to the plate and challenging this policy as we speak! TDCJ and the Attorney General of Texas Ken Paxton continue to craft policies which smack of antisemitism, islamophobia, and xenophobic tendencies.

Albritton Law Firm can’t do all the fighting alone. We desperately need help from Muslim and Jewish lawyers from organizations such as CAIR, the ACLU, the ADL. I am requesting that there be interfaith cooperation on this subject. We need your help.

Dare to struggle, Dare to win, All Power to the People!

——–

Keith ‘Malik’ Washington is a co-founder and chief spokespersyn for the End Prison
Slavery in Texas Movement, a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing
Committee and he is the Deputy Chairman of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party
(Prison Chapter). Malik has been instrumental in calling for the abolition of legalized
slavery in Amerika and is very active in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign. You can view
his work at comrademalik.com or you can write him directly at:
Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington
TDC #1487958
Eastham Unit
2665 Prison Rd. #1
Lovelady, Texas 75851

Standard
In solidarity

Fight to Stop Slave Trade in Libya NOW!!! (We Must Not Be Silent)

By Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington

Revolutionary Greetings Sisters & brothers! It is I your comrade in struggle brother Malik reporting in from the Texas Gulag. In 2018 the campaign to End Prison Slavery will be thrust onto the national stage.

I have been contemplating heavily in respect to the significance of our movement and comparing what we prisoners in Amerika are going through in comparison with human beings in Libya who are actually being auctioned off as Real Life Slaves!!

The question presents itself:

How can we—people who claim to be dedicated Human and Civil Rights Activists—ignore the tragedy of a modern day slave trade happening right before our eyes?

We Can’t Ignore It!!

We can’t be silent and we are going to have to take steps to stop it. NOW!! Not tomorrow.

I’ve been asking myself, how did this happen?

Why are we so apprehensive and hesitant to call-out Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton? Imperialism and the greed for fossil fuels and world domination led to the murder of Libyan President Muammar Gaddafi. Hillary Clinton laughed on National TV and made a joke about Gaddafi being hacked to death by American backed murderers!!

Do any of you remember Hillary’s insensitive remarks?? I do! She said: “We came, we saw, he died.”

Muamar Gaddafi was a friend to Black People. To Hillary black people especially young black males are nothing more than ‘Super Predators.’

But neither ‘good brother’ Barack or “sister” Hillary are in the White House anymore .

No! We have a white supremacist Con-Man in the White House and Donald Trump is not going to do a damn thing about our beautiful African sisters and brothers being sold as slaves in Libya!

UN Ambassador Nikki Haley isn’t going to say or do nothing! Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is not going to intervene. And don’t think for one minute that the ‘Closet Racist’ Mike Pompeo the Director of the CIA is going to lose any sleep over the open air slave markets in Tripoli.

It is my contention that Imperialism has allowed ‘legalized’ prison slavery to spread throughout Amerika and it has ushered in a Modern-Day Slave Trade in Libya. I say we must combat this with Socialism/Communism and come to grips with these dialectical FACTS:

1) The sole purpose of slavery and slavery and fascism is to create wealth for the middle and upper-class slave traders!

2) If the economic incentive associated with slavery and/or racism were to be eliminated by abolishing the exploitative class structure, slavery and/or racism would disappear!!

In other words, when we smash capitalism/imperialism, we open the door to creating a true egalitarian environment for all humanity!

Lastly, 3) Progressive persyns and revolutionaries throughout the world should unite in order to overthrow Imperialism.

When we hear the slogan:

Workers of the World Unite, it should serve as a battle cry for all likeminded comrades and allies in struggle.

The Democratic and Republican Political Parties in Amerika have continued to ignore the crimes against humanity which are taking place right now in Libya!

We have the Neo-Liberals Obama and Clinton who created this mess.

Then, we have the neo-conservatives and alt-right fascists who support Trump and they certainly are not going to fix the problem.

So what good are these corrupt money hangry political parties??

That’s the key—they aren’t any good for any of us.

In 2018 it’s time for change! Socialists and Anarchists who are committed Abolitionists must take an Active Role in calling out the US Government!!

These Hypocrites, and I’m talking about Trump & Obama, encouraged Nigerian President Mohammadu Bahari to destroy Boko Haram but now that innocent Nigerians are being forced into slavery in Libya, the state department sits on their damn hands!!

You don’t like what I’m saying, President Trump??!

Well, shut me up!

Get up off your Ass and do something meaningful to stop the sale of our African sisters and brothers!

Stop ignoring the Humyn Rights disaster in Libya!

Abolish Slavery NOW!

Dare to Struggle, Dare to Win, All Power to the People.

———

Keith ‘Malik’ Washington is a co-founder and chief spokespersyn for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement, a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee and he is the Deputy Chairman of the New Afrikan Black Panther Party (Prison Chapter). Malik has been instrumental in calling for the abolition of legalized slavery in Amerika and is very active in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign. You can view his work at comrademalik.com or you can write him directly at:

 

Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington

TDC #1487958

Eastham Unit

2665 Prison Rd. #1

Lovelady, Texas 75851

Standard
End Prison Slavery, Prison conditions

Re-distributing the Pain (2018) Shut ‘em DOWN!

By Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

Chief Spokespersyn
End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement
I.W.O.C. member

“The Black Panther Party is a revolutionary Nationalist group and we see a major contradiction between capitalism in this country and our interests. We realize that this country became very rich upon slavery and that slavery is capitalism in the extreme. We have two evils to fight. Capitalism and racism. We must destroy both racism and capitalism.”

-Dr. Huey P. Newton

Many try to separate anti-imperialism from our Prison Abolition Movement. They avoid talking about Capitalism and how it relates to ‘Legalized’ Slavery or Mass Incarceration in the United States. I won’t be making that mistake.

The Capitalist Oppressor who operates and oversees the Prison Industrial Slave Complex is only ‘moved’ by profits, or more accurately stated, the lack of profits!

Let me make something perfectly clear to the exploited lumpen prisoners in Amerika and our free-world supporters:

The only time these folks give a damn about what happens in these Slave Kamps is when the Slavery Business ceases to be profitable or beneficial to the oppressor.

Contaminated water does not move them! Deaths from deadly extreme heat does not move them! Not even the ever-rising number of prisoner suicides pricks the conscience of the oppressor.

But let the prisoners in Amerika wake up tomorrow morning “With it on their mind!!” I’m talking about one mind and one determined purpose!

Let those prisoners rise up collectively and say: “We refuse to work anymore and help maintain a system which degrades, dehumanizes and exploits us!”
WE WANT FREE!!

OH-All of a sudden “The Game” will change I promise you it will change FAST!

Florida is just the beginning!

We won’t be telegraphing every move we make. Now sit back and ponder on that Capitalist Pigs!

In 2018 it’s time to redistribute the pain. This is a National Call to Action to All Prisoners in Amerika and the United Kingdom Withdraw your Free Labor and Shut ‘em Down!

Dare to Struggle, Dare to win! All Power to the People!

Standard