This morning I watched the Ethan Crumbley hearing where he admitted to the killings and the judge told him the possible sentences. He will get life with no parole in prison. He is 16 years old. He committed the murders at 15 years old. He killed other kids, no minimizing that.
But the US justice system is not about rehabilitation, it is about vengeance and punishment. Mostly punishment. The fact is with for profit prisons and every effort at cost cutting the people in prison live in some of the most horrible conditions they cannot escape from no matter how well they may try to improve themselves and they can never redeem themselves. We have all heard the stories of food so bad that it has bugs in it, mold all over the bread or other items, meats that are green and slimy that shouldn’t ever be consumed. That is just the food. The stories about non-existence of healthcare with lack of any medications. Then there is the conditions that prisoners are forced to live in that exploit them at every turn. If they want any comfort they must buy it at often highly inflated prices, but the only access to funds for most is prison set up labor, where often the prison hires out the prisoner as slave labor with no rights for a huge profit to the prison authorities but only pennies for the prisoner, but what choice do they have? Earn nothing and suffer with no ability to have anything including food that is not unfit to eat, or do the slave labor knowing how badly you are being abused. But the worst thing I think is beyond the constant lifelong every second of your life having someone tell you what you can do, must do, not do, no rights for any movement except that approved by someone else. You are an adult treated like a 3 year old. But add to that is the living conditions. For profit prisons are notorious for making the living conditions as unpleasant as possible to save money, so they give no temperature controls making prisoners either swelter in the unbearable heat or suffer the cold with no way to keep warm or leave to get warm. One more thing you have no body privacy. Other people have the right to see and inspect your genitals and look into your anus any time they want, the people in charge have the right to watch you shower. This 16 year old boy will be made to be nude in front of other people and display himself on his return to his prison despite being under constant observation of law officers the entire time. Plus if you look at the video he is in a jumpsuit with his feet / legs shackled together and his cuffed to his waste. They did release his right hand so he could raise it to swear the oath.
What has me crying, emotionally upset, and torn up barely able to deal with my thoughts. This boy has been in jail for 11 months. He committed the crime at 15 and he is now 16. He will be in some prison for the rest of his life. His only out will be either killed or a natural death 60 years from now. During that time his life will be hell. Pure punishment. He is young and kind of cute with longish hair … I know what he will face, I had it done to me. He will adjust and try to deal but others will take their pleasure out of his body and he won’t have any way to stop them. Unlike me he cannot escape or hide from the abusers. He faces constant physical violence and danger of harm. I know what it is like to be stabbed while eating, more than once a fork was embedded in my body. Mostly my hand or arm. From an early age I learned supper at the table was dangerous and got used to looking for the signs of violence about to happen and sliding quickly under the table. I got really good at quickly dropping under the table and trying to shut out what was happening above. Not that if I was the target being under the table was safe, but it gave me avenues to try to escape. I was so undernourished and thin because who can eat knowing that at any time the adults at the table will start throwing things and hitting each other or coming after me for something. One doctor who examined me said I was so underdeveloped I would be lucky to be over 5 foot tall as an adult. This will be Ethan’s life for the next 60 years. I was able to eat at school and hide from supper, but for him to do that he has to do the slave labor to buy food that is not provided. He faces constant threats of abuse from other prisoners, the guards that are said to protect he will also be a threat to him, he wont have access to medical health or needed mental health, he will suffer and suffer for a lifetime of maybe 60 years. And some people think that is justice.
An update and ending. I had more to write on this but I think you get my point you can look up anything you need to, I just got done throwing up which woke Ron from his nap. He came out and wanted to know why I was sick and crying. When I tried to tell him but really couldn’t he wanted me to shut the computers off. He did not know the specifics, but he was sure it had to do with something on either computer. He asked me repeatedly to shut them off and play Halo on the Xbox. I like Halo, it makes me feel better as I get to be the ultra strong hero stopping the bad guys. But in this Ron doesn’t understand. My retreating into fantasy will help me right now, but it wont help anyone of the people in the broken prison system in the US, it wont help Eathan who is a kid his parents destroyed and set up for this. I have a suspicion more will come out, the parents did not flee and lie so because they bought the gun, that makes no sense. I suspect there was a much worse home life for Ethan that will come out. Not that it will matter for him now, our vindictive hateful society will have their revenge. I just wish they would add one more death to the total lost that day, his life also was lost forever it will just take him longer to die.
One more thought. For those that have a weird view that death is worse than a lifetime of rape, punishment, abuse, harm, pain, hurt, being scared, having to use a toilet in the open, having to shower in front of everyone, and all the rest … what is your mental defect. Many times in my childhood I felt death was better. I just never got to the point of doing it simply because I did not know how. I did put some effort into it, but back then no internet. Death even in the bible is the dead no not nothing! Damn that is better than some of the things I mentioned above.
Anyway, this is week we have to vote and the state for the first time I have lived here did not send out a sample ballot for our voting district. They only have a county wide version of the ballot online. This is the first year the republicans have been in charge of our county voting and they are making it as hard as possible to find information on any of the things on the ballot. I was to look up all the judges that need retention and other provisions on the ballot that fills nearly three pages in a PDF file. Most of this won’t be on my ballot but I have no way to know. But with my mind / emotions the way they are right now it is a struggle to even think or concentrate? Damn I want to go hide in my bed. But my mind keeps going back to the life this poor bastard will have. I don’t agree it is justice or in any way what is best for society. If we really want him removed from society just kill him. Don’t give him a sentence of 60 years of punishment. That if revenge, that is sadistic. That is not what humans should do.
Ok I am done, drained of any ability to say more. Best wishes and hugs to all. I am not even going to proof read this for mistakes, what is then it is. I feel the pain in every part of my body and all my fear responses are wanting me to flee but where would I flee to? Hugs
2 thoughts on “I am emotionally torn and upset.”
When you consider that the US contains 5% of the world’s population but 25% of its prisoners you begin to understand the inhumanity of the American “justice” system. Even tyrannical authoritarian nations have fewer prisoners even though they have many political prisoners and prisoners of conscious. It sums up how sick American society it.
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Hello Barry. I agree. I wish our own people could see both how we appear to other civilized countries and how they handle justice and detention / confinement. Best wishes.