MASS INCARCERATION & CONTROL UNITS:
CRIME CONTROL OR SOCIAL CONTROL?
On October 27, 1983 all of the United States Penitentiary at Marion was
locked down, thus producing the first control unit prison in the history of
the United States. In the fall of 1985, the Committee to End the Marion
Lockdown (CEML) came into being with our first event co-sponsored with the
National Committee to Free Puerto Rican Prisoners of War. The event was
designed to commemorate two full years of the lockdown and to generate a
determination to end it. Unfortunately we failed to end it, but with that
event we started a tradition of fall programs which would commemorate the
lockdown, help us remember the courageous people caged therein, and energize
us to continue to struggle against control units.
On October 21, 1995 CEML, along with the National Committee, held our
eleventh annual fall program. The speakers were all extraordinary as was the
energy in the room provided by the 150 people who attended the event.
Additional energy and significance was given to the event by the fact that
The National Campaign to Stop Control Unit Prisons held its second national
meeting in Chicago that same weekend. Over 40 people traveled to the meeting
from all across the United States, coming from places as far away as New York
City, San Francisco, Boston, Denver, Dayton, Newark, etc. They also attended
Since the program, we have had many requests for transcripts of the talks at
the event. We have thus decided to produce the pamphlet that is now before
you. We hope that you will find the transcript informative and helpful.
- Nancy Kurshan, CEML
- Dr. Alan Berkman, former political prisoner
- Nozomi Ikuta, Director of
Liberation Ministries, United Church Board for Homeland Ministries of the United Church of Christ.
- Sanyika Shakur, former New Afrikan political prisoner & author of bestselling autobiography Monster
- Jose Lopez, Executive Director of the Puerto Rican Cultural Center, member of the Movimiento de Liberacion Nacional
Letters from Prisoners
As part of our
fall program activities, at the beginning of September,
1995 CEML sent letters to all the
knew of at the Florence Control Unit (the "Administrative Maximum
prisoncratese, or ADX or Ad Max) and asked for their
on the first year
of the prison, which was officially opened at the beginning of 1995.
They are printed in the order they were received.
We urge everyone
to write to some of the prisoners caged at Florence. The address
of them is the same: name, prison number, P.O. Box 8500, Florence, CO
Committee to End the Marion Lockdown
P.O. Box 578172
Chicago, IL 60657-8172
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