Prisons have the power, and tendency, to lock everyone up first and sort it out later. We refer to this as the “ready-fire-aim” approach. They can hold you in segregation up to 15 working days ‘under investigation.’ Once that time expires it takes a week or so to process you back to population. Add in weekends and holidays and you get 30 days in the hole.
Last week Michael Flynn’s lawyers asked for immunity in exchange for his testimony before Congress for any possible crimes he may have committed before he was nudged out of his position as National Security Advisor in the trump administration. So, with donald trump now in favor of immunity for people who seem to be targets of enthusiastic inquisition, then there should likely be more groups of people for whom immunity should be granted.
I was involved in the criminal justice system for almost 10 years. For those 10 years, I probably spent at least one full day a week in Court. It was a parade of human misery and hopelessness in all aspects that was soul numbing to behold. The victims were not going to be made whole and the defendants were not going to receive any rehabilitation that would prevent future offenses. It was a mass churning of humanity for no apparent reason whatsoever except a violation of the law demanded punishment.
As we more fully embody the incarnational relationships to which we are called, we will help one another to name our needs, and then to claim and receive the support that will help us and our families walk together through the challenges that befall us. We’ll make that walk together and eventually sit down together, still family, reunited at the table.
This week, NPR and The Marshall Project published a series of stories uncovering the harrowing use of torture at the Lewisburg federal penitentiary where incarcerated people are routinely forced to face double-celled solitary confinement in a 6×10 ft cell for nearly 24 hours a day with a cell mate they fear, or are shackled in restraints for refusing their cell assignment.