Jonathan Gordon


In 1874, the 1st women’s prison in America was built, it was in Indiana. Quoting Joane Belknap:
“Train prisoners in the ‘important’ female role of domesticity. Thus an important role of the reform movement in women’s prisons was to encourage and ingrain ‘appropriate’ gender roles, such as vocational training in cooking, sewing and cleaning. To accomodate these goals, the reformatory cottages were usually designed with kitchens, living rooms, and even some nurseries for prisoner’s with infants.”

Lucia Zedner says:”…women were sent to reformatories not to be punished in porportion to the seriousness of their offense, but to be reformed and retrained, a process tat it was argued required time…” She also had said that “Eugenics”, quote: “Which sought to have ‘genetically inferior’ women removed from social circulation for as many of their child bearing years as possible.”

Luana Ross said: “Prisons, as employed by the Euro American system, operate to keep Native Americans in a colonial situation.”

In Ms. Ross’ study of Women’s Correctional Center in Montana, she found that Natives were 6% of the population of the state of Montana, yet overall they were 17.3% of the prison population and Native women were 25% of the women’s prison population.

In 1996, a Human Rights Watch report said:
“Our findings indicate that being a women prisoner in the U.S. state prisons can be a terrifying experience. If you are sexually abused, you cannot escape from your abuser, greivances or investigatory procedures, where they exist, are oftne ineffectual and correctional employees continue to engage in abuse because they believe they will rarely be held accountable, administratively or criminally.
Few people outside the prison walls know what is going on or care if they do know. Fewer still do anything to address the problem…”

*note for people that don’t know what “Eugenics” is, it was adopting in America in the early 1900’s as a way to “cleanse” the country of “undesirables” usually people with mental disabilities or physically disabilities. For women, if they had physical deformities or were deemed to be crazy or “retarded” they were sterilized, if they were pregnant and had birth, the children were taken from them, and if the authorities could get to them before giving them birth, they would force the wome to have abortions. Also, they did physical experimentations on the women while they were alive, things like lobotomies and such in order to find out why they were different and to be able to prevent more women being born like that in the future…it was classified as a legitimate medical research method…eventually though it was made illegal. It was also used by the nazi as a way to “ethnically cleanse” the European blood. The Europeans did much of the same things to people of African Heritage as the U.S. did in America, including sterilization, isolation, condemnation, exile, and even made it illegal to have mulatto children….

Jonathan Gordon
DOC #793350

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