When Your Government Tells Women They Don’t Matter

Posted: July 7, 2021 in Human Rights
Tags: , , ,

Photo by Denis Oliveira on Unsplash

Imagine having made a horrible mistake or two or even three. You know what you did was wrong. Like everyone else, you had your reasons. Maybe they were good reasons. Maybe they were stupid reasons, but you did what you did and you got caught.

You weren’t violent or if you were, it was to defend yourself or your child or a friend.

You were stupid or strung out on drugs or thought you could get away with it.

But you didn’t.

You got caught and now you’re in jail. You commit yourself to being better, to doing better, to take this one chance to change your life.

You don’t know where your kids are because they were taken away from you. Put in foster care because you didn’t have anyone in your family who could take them in.

Worse yet, they are with a family member you know will harm them, neglect them, use them as punching bag and there’s nothing you can do about it.

You messed up and your rights were taken away from you.

It’s your fault. You know this.

Maybe you’ve been homeless, living in your car with your kids.

You weren’t happy but at least you got away from him. You hope he doesn’t find you so you move your car every night and pray the weather doesn’t turn cold.

Maybe you did what you did because he made you do bad things.

I’ve heard just about every excuse for someone behaving badly and I’ve never bought any of them. We always have reasons, excuses, justifications for what we do.

No human being has ever been wrong. Just ask one. Ask yourself.

So there you sit, in a cell with other women. You find an endless amount of help available to you:

  • AA
  • Anger Management
  • Vocational Programs
  • Academic Programs
  • Substance Abuse Programs
  • Career Education
  • Pre-release Guidance
  • Community Bettermet Projects

You’ll run into and meet plenty of volunteers like me, who offer to help and demand you do the best you can do. You’ll meet us because we believe people can change if they want to. We believe we can get you back to who you are.

The facility is responsible for your safety and welfare, so you use the time to improve yourself, get clean and sober, dig deep into yourself and vow you’ll be a better person every day.

Then one day, the staff tell you “You know how to scrap, you know how to fight, so defend yourself.”

Why are they suddenly telling you this as they turn their backs and look the other way?

Photo by Skyler King on Unsplash

Because male inmates are now in your facility, in your cell, and in your showers. Suddenly convicted sex offenders have decided to self-ID as a woman and there’s nothing you can do about it.

You have to take it. You have to ignore his leering while you use the toilet. You have to look away when he has an erection while he watches you sleep.

You now sleep in shifts to prevent getting raped or assaulted. There’s no help from anyone anymore.

If you complain, you’ll be disciplined and he won’t. He’ll get away with it because YOU’RE the one with the problem.

You’re transphobic.

You’re a prude.

You thought you had a voice? You need to take it, put up with it, sit down and shut up.

Just like you always have. Not only has your safe space been taken away from you, so has your voice.

The staff tell you they are afraid of a lawsuit, so they look away.

Your government has told you that you don’t matter and never did.

And we wonder why recidivism is so high?

They are someone’s daughter, sister, mother, aunt. granddaughter. They matter and we need to speak for them since they have been silenced and tossed aside so predators can prey on them.

These women matter even if the government says they don’t.

Violation of anyone’s human rights is a violation of yours and mine.

So what can you do?

Plenty. We’re not going to stop fighting and protecting women until our hard-earned rights are restored to all of us.

Failure is not an option.

Please visit this site, watch the video and sign the petition and share, share, and share some more. https://www.womensliberationfront.org/california-sb-132-a-disaster-for-incarcerated-women

Comments
  1. Equus spirit says:

    Hey, girlfriend, forwarded this on to the family member. Working on the others. Haven’t forgotten you or these ladies. Peace and strength.

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