Connect with us

News

When the Jailed Become the Jailers: Maximum Security Prison in Turmoil After Prisoners Take Officers Hostage

Avatar

Published

on

At the James T. Vaughn Correctional Facility (JTVCC) in Smyra, Delaware, as reported by Delaware Online, inmates have taken over the maximum security prison and are thought to be holding several officers hostage. All Delaware prisons are now on lock down due to the events which are still unfolding.

The prisoners in this facility have “taken over the building” reported Rep. William Carson, a member of the House Corrections Committee.

Helicopters, fire-engines and police vehicles keep flooding into the prison. Updates can be seen here.

Delaware Prison

The Stanford Prison Experiment

Details are still scarce as to why the inmates have been incited to such action, and the Department of Corrections is currently releasing little information about the event; however, there is a little-known phenomenon documented in what is now called the Stanford Prison Experiment which may lend insight into the unfolding events.

In 1971, several dozen college students were rounded up and ‘booked’ on charges of armed robbery and burglary. They weren’t really criminals, though, but willing participants in a Stanford University study. They were taken to Stanford County Prison—also known as the Stanford University psychology department, where they were subjected to psychological abuse by the ‘prison wardens.’ All inmates in the study were carefully checked for family history, criminal backgrounds, and psychological dysfunction. Before being admitted they were all deemed “normal.”

At first the imprisoned took the abuse of their captors and were submissive, saying little in protest. The abuse was so extreme though, that the experiment was terminated in six days though it was meant to continue for six weeks.  It is important to point out that the treatment these ‘fake’ prisoners received is similar to what many of the incarcerated endure in an average prison, not even a high-security prison. (Including being strip-searched, de-loused, and being forced to wear dehumanizing prison dress which included chains around the ankles.)

What ensued is no more than psychological chaos, and showed that with very little incentive, many of us can become tyrants, or easy targets, based on the emotional and societal structures which support each of these roles.

Though the prison guards had been explicitly instructed not to use physical force prior to the study, they all became increasingly aggressive and violent, causing an equal response in the prisoners.

What the Stanford Prison Experiment detailed was that we all play roles in our lives. We can be domineering and aggressive or peace loving just as easily – with very little motivation in either direction.

Police Violence In and Out of Prisons

As police violence grows outside prison walls, you can imagine how prison wardens and guards might tend to behave inside institutions that regularly turn to violence, psychological humiliation, and de-humanization to keep people in check.

Police

Every seven seconds someone is killed by a law enforcement official in this country. Though some of these deaths may have been “justified” by criminal actions, many of these deaths are unnecessary and carried out on innocent individuals.

When we consider the group-think and herd mentality that causes Lord of the Flies type action, might it be better to utilize more peaceful methods for helping criminals change their actions – including criminal behavior by those charged with lording over the incarcerated?

Better Solutions 

For example, one man, Adam Verdoux was incarcerated for carrying out six different robberies, but has now learned how to cope with his fears and mental pain by meditating. He isn’t alone. Models based on incorporating meditation and yoga are being used all over the world to help lower recidivism rates. One prison in India where Gandhi was once jailed offers early release for prisoners who complete a yoga training program because it has been found to be so successful in rehabilitating prisoners.

Prison Yoga copy

Norway has one of the lowest recidivism rates in the world with fewer than 4,000 people behind bars in a country with a population of 5 million. The country relies on a concept called “restorative justice,” which aims to repair the harm caused by crime rather than punish people. This system focuses on rehabilitating prisoners.  

Other prison systems are teaching prisoners important life skills that also happen to lower stress and help them deal with their anger. Insight Garden Program, which has been helping inmates at San Quentin rehabilitate and get training in flower gardening since 2003 and models which are similar have been helping inmates steer clear of a life of crime once they are no longer in prison.

Prison Garden copy

When the jailed become the jailers, it is time to look more closely at the way we treat each other as a whole. The prison industry cannot continue its deleterious treatment of the incarcerated and the over-jailing of innocent people.  As long as we jail people for profit, instead of trying to rehabilitate those who commit real crimes, instances like the Delaware prison hostage situation will likely only grow more frequent.  The uprising is happening in every aspect of our society.

Image: Source, SourceSource, Source, Source

News

Jeff Bezos Thanks Amazon Workers And Customers For Paying For His Flight To Space

Elias Marat

Published

on

The billionaire space race chalked up one more ignoble milestone on July 20 when the world’s richest man, Jeff Bezos, boarded a reusable rocket his company Blue Origin built and funded, flew to the edge of space for a moment of weightlessness, and came back down to earth.

You can watch the flight and learn more about the journey here.

The Amazon founder has faced withering criticism for accumulating his massive fortune on the backs of an exploited workforce that is subject to harsh working conditions and low pay in warehouses or Fulfillment Centers where staffers must urinate in water bottles in order to meet their quotas.

In his press conference following the launch, Bezos thanked that same workforce for helping him to shoot himself into space in a move that many critics have described as a simple “joyride.”

“I want to thank every Amazon employee and every Amazon customer because you guys paid for this,” he told the crowd, which responded with laughter. “Seriously, for every Amazon customer out there and every employee thank you from the bottom of my heart very much. It’s very appreciated.”

Critics on Twitter responded with derision, noting that Bezos was able to enjoy the trip at the expense of his hard-working employees.

“Thing is, employers are supposed to pay their employees, not the other way around, but that’s basically how Amazon works,” one user tweeted.

While another tweeter asked: “Maybe they’re searching space for signs of a livable wage or a way to pay their fair share of taxes?”

On Tuesday, Bezos blasted off in the sub-orbital New Shepard rocket from Texas. The date for the launch was chosen to coincide with the 52nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.

Members of the crew, which included his brother mark and 82-year-old female astronaut Wally Funk, brought a number of historic items on the flight, including a piece of canvas from the conceptual plane originally flown by the Wright brothers, the goggles Amelia Earhart used to fly across the Atlantic, and a brass medal made from the first hot air balloon which flew in 1783.

Continue Reading

Good News

Keanu Reeves Praised As Video of Him Offering Seat to Lady in Subway Resurfaces

Elias Marat

Published

on

Keanu Reeves is an actor who has long been loved by audiences —and not necessarily due to his acting skills, but due to how nice the John Wick star is.

And now, Reeves is once again earning praise as a “true gentleman” after resurfaced video footage shows Reeves giving up his seat on the subway.

The clip was shared by Instagram film fan account Cinemonkeys where it has since earned nearly 45,000 likes.

The video footage dates back to 2011, when it was shared on YouTube by a user of the video-sharing platform.

At the time, Reeves was already a superstar riding on the fame he earned from the Matrix, Speed, and a number of other blockbuster hits.

When Reeves notices a woman carrying a heavy bag, he quickly points to his seat and asks if she would like to sit. The woman accepts and Reeves gets up without hesitating to let her take his seat.

Reeves, ever the model citizen, then stands and holds onto a subway pole while carrying his bag.

The video has since been watched over 27 million times and was even cited in a 2019 Time magazine profile of the actor describing Reeves as the “soul mate” of the internet.

The resurfacing of the clip on Instagram once again impressed users of the platform.

“This human being’s soul honestly shines so bright,” wrote one user.

“OMG I love him in every single way,” another person commented.

His kindness knows no bounds,” commented someone else.

Keanu is set to reprise his role as Neo in the upcoming fourth Matrix film directed and written by Lana Wachowski, who co-directed the earlier trilogy with her sister Lilly. He will also return to the silver screen in John Wick: Chapter 4, which will be released in 2022.

Continue Reading

Animals

Drunk Man Rescues Injured Baby Bird By Sending It To Animal Shelter… In An Uber

Elias Marat

Published

on

An injured baby bird received a new lease on life after a young man who was inebriated had the good sense to send the little creature to an animal shelter because he and his friends were too drunk to drive.

In the Summer of 2019, a small lesser goldfinch suddenly appeared by itself at the Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of Northern Utah. The center’s chairman, Buz Marthaler, was notified by a volunteer who sent him a photo.

“It was a picture of this bird, and it had come by Uber,” Marthaler told FOX13. “It was just crazy.”

As it turns out, the tiny bird – which was only two weeks old – indeed rolled up to the site by its lonesome, the sole passenger in an Uber vehicle called by concerned citizens who found the injured creature.

Among those good Samaritans was Tim Crowley, who had been “day drinking” on that Saturday before he and his buddies witnessed the little bird fall from the sky.

“Impromptu, sitting in some camp chairs, hanging out, having a few drinks when we had a visitor fall out of the sky,” he explained.

Crowley then snapped a photo of the bird and sent it to the WRCNU, which instructed him to immediately bring the bird in. However, the group obviously couldn’t drive since they had been guzzling booze all day.

So Crowley decided he’d hail a cab for the creature.

“At first it was a joke, like, ‘Hey, maybe we should just call Uber!’” he said. “Then we were like, ‘No, really. Why not? We’re paying them.’”

As it turns out, the bird – since named “Petey Uber” by staff at the rescue center – likely would have perished if not for Crowley’s quick thinking.

Marthaler remains impressed by Crowley’s move and shared the news on its Facebook page.

“While we feel we’ve seen it all and can’t be amazed by anything, there is always someone out there to prove us wrong,” the shelter’s post read. “Thank you to the rescuer who helped this little one get the care it needed in a timely manner and thank you for keeping yourself safe and others on the road safe as well.”

Continue Reading

Trending