Friday, October 7, 2011

Ad Seg...Good thing, Bad thing, Who knows

Before I begin posting about Bryan's situation, which appears to have gone from very, very bad to even worse, I want to share this story about remaining in the present moment and avoiding stress and worry.

 Good thing, Bad thing, Who knows

There was once a farmer who owned a horse and had a son. 

One day, his horse ran away. The neighbors came to express their concern: "Oh, that's too bad. How are you going to work the fields now?" The farmer replied: "Good thing, Bad thing, Who knows?"

In a few days, his horse came back and brought another horse with her. Now, the neighbors were glad: "Oh, how lucky! Now you can do twice as much work as before!" The farmer replied: "Good thing, Bad thing, Who knows?"

The next day, the farmer's son fell off the new horse and broke his leg. The neighbors were concerned again: "Now that he is incapacitated, he can't help you around, that's too bad." The farmer replied: "Good thing, Bad thing, Who knows?"

Soon, the news came that a war broke out, and all the young men were required to join the army. The villagers were sad because they knew that many of the young men will not come back. The farmer's son could not be drafted because of his broken leg. His neighbors were envious: "How lucky! You get to keep your only son." The farmer replied: "Good thing, Bad thing, Who knows?"


To repeat, Bryan's situation appears to have gone from very, very bad to even worse.  But I can promise you that he is still drawing breath.  I have word that he is one of 15 men who have been moved from their SHU cells to AdSeg (Administrative Segregation.)  It is a hole even deeper than the property, or any items other than t-shirts, boxers and a thin blanket.  Currently, the temperature in Crescent City is 45 degrees and there are reports that CDCR is running the air conditioners full blast.

Since the hunger strike resumed on Sept. 26, all visits for hunger strikers have been denied, but for those in AdSeg, there are rumors that the mail is cut completely... conversely, there is also some word that they get three envelopes and a few sheets of paper.  Not that that does them any good, at this point in the last hunger strike, Bryan was too weak to even write.

Here is the good news.  Tomorrow, legal representatives from the Bay Area have interviews scheduled with several prisoners.  Bryan is on the list to be interviewed!!  One of the lawyers who knows that Bryan is my friend, called and said he was on the list.  I then called the person doing the interviews and she said she would request to interview Bryan and report back to me on his condition, which I will post here late tomorrow (no earlier than 10 pm).  So, things look bad, but at least we will know what is going on.

Now I will get into some information about the hunger strike and share with you a conversation that Bryan and I had before the July HS started.  If you are faint of heart, be forewarned, this is a very hard position he is taking:

Bryan was convinced that it would be a small number of strikers from the Short Corridor willing to go to the death, who would be key to the success of their peaceful protest.  There was some discussion/disagreement among the collective about taking this to a mass HS level as shrinking numbers might be perceived as CDCR breaking the strike.  As a group, although there was discussion, they did agree with the concept that large numbers could go as long as possible out of solidarity.  With an estimate that 12,000 men were not eating last week and the numbers going down, it is important to remember that is was the original intent... to keep it small but intense.

At this point, the men know that the next step is for several of them to "get to the tube" or be force feed.  This horrible procedure is painful in the best of circumstance, but with retaliatory intentions, force feeding will give CDCR the ability to inflict tremendous pain and suffering.  Bryan knows this and it is his greatest fear, even greater than the fear of death.  As his emergency and medical contact, Bryan designated me on his Advance Directive (DNR) to carry out his wishes when he is in a diminished capacity and can no longer speak for himself.  When the  CDCR calls me to ask for permission to force feed him or provide medical care, I will say no.  Bryan's mother, sister and other family members have all been informed by Bryan of this fact and understand what must be done and why.  It is a hard thing to do and perhaps Bryan wanted to spare his mother.  I am sharing this now so you won't be shocked or angry when the time comes.

Bryan also told me that in order for enough people to become aware of the tortuous situation in the SHU, it may take several deaths to get the mainstream media to cover the story adequately.  Bryan knows this and expects to be one of the first to fall.  He was sent to the hospital in town for 5 days of life-saving treatment after the last hunger strike and almost died.  He doesn't write of "if" but "when".  I pray he is wrong.

This site is about the truth of what is happening to Bryan and what he is choosing to do. He is willing to lay down his life on the hopes that someday he can get out of the Shu and that no one else ever has to live is such torturous conditions.  I have intentionally left out many brutal truths about what he expects in these coming days, because I do not want to speculate or cause any unnecessary concerns about things that may not happen.  But be prepared, if the CDCR does not make some progress towards meeting the reasonable demands of the prisoners this will get very, very ugly.  I am hoping for the best, but given the hard line CDCR is taking, we must prepare for the worst.


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