by Cal Skinner
There is a way to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS in prison.
But it goes against the grain of everything considered by liberals as politically correct.
The way to do it is to test all of the prisoners periodically and house those who are HIV-infected separately from those who are not.
When I was on top of this subject in the mid-1990's, three or four states followed that almost guaranteed course of protecting uninfected inmates from those who are HIV-infected.
I talked to a former Illinois Corrections official working in Louisiana's prison system, one of the ones that housed the infected separately from the infected.
(The liberals opposed to this practice always called it “segregation,” thus putting a racial twist on a disease that infects all races.)
The former Illinois DOC employee told me when they first instituted the policy, they put up a chain link fence between the two sections.
The prisoners were having sex through the links.
Louisiana solved that problem by putting up another fence 12 inches away.
The point is that prisoners are not responsible people. If they were responsible, they would not be behind bars.
Now comes my former colleague Monique Davis, who sat across the center aisle from former State Rep. Tom Johnson and me in the 1990's, sponsoring a bill to distribute condoms in the Illinois Department of Corrections.
She has gotten the bill out of committee.
Giving prisoners condoms will not stop rape in prison.
If you are interested in the problem, here's some more information.
The DOC has pretty much a three money approach to HIV.
Although an almost half million dollar CDC study in the early 1990's proved that HIV was being spread behind Illinois prison walls, the Department refused to do anything significant about it.
Even when I found a “face”--Michael Blucker, then of Crystal Lake--who could proved he was HIV-infected in prison.
DOC decided to institute “peer counseling.”
Inmates don't put on condoms when they are about to rape someone.
If a subservient inmate agrees to “hook up” with a dominant inmate in order not to be randomly raped, the dominant male may use a condom. That happened to Donny Donaldson, who wrote the brief
But the rape is not less a rape, even if it looks consensual.
How bad is it?
"The horrors experienced by many young inmates, particularly those who are convicted of nonviolent offenses, border on the unimaginable.That is the top item on the newly re-named Stop Prisoner Rape organization. It is now called Just Detention International.
"Prison rape not only threatens the lives of those who fall prey to their aggressors, but it is potentially devastating to the human spirit.
"Shame, depression, and a shattering loss of self-esteem accompany the perpetual terror the victim thereafter must endure."
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun, Farmer v. Brennan
Posted first on McHenry County Blog.
Friday, March 06, 2009
by Cal Skinner