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Home arrow Opinion arrow Letters arrow Letters to the Editor July 22, 2011


Letters to the Editor July 22, 2011

Inmates in SHU made choices that rightly cost them privileges

What does a hunger strike at Pelican Bay State Prison mean? It’s a situation where people who have a choice to eat decide not to.

Such is the case with these disgruntled inmates in the SHU at Pelican Bay. They have food in their cells, can buy food from the canteen and get room service — a state-issued meal three times a day. These meals are very rigidly monitored — the amount, temperature and time of servings, just to mention a few. I know because I’ve worked in the food service industry.

These inmates are grown adults capable of making decisions on their own and have simply chosen not to eat the food provided by the state. Okay. So what? This is not a hand-wringing crisis situation. They are not being deprived of food. They are choosing not to eat. Fine, don’t eat!


Some recent letters to the editor have been seriously misinformed and naive. These bleeding hearts for their fellow-man liberals evidently have not been affected by criminals who choose to invade their lives and take or destroy those things they hold precious — someone’s life, possessions, property, rapes, molested children — and the list goes on.

What does it mean to be sent to prison? It means that you have been caught by the authorities, judged by a jury of your peers and placed away from mainstream society in a place where you can no longer do the heinous, violent and tragic actions that put you there. And once you’re there, if you continue with those actions (kill people, assault people, steal, gang-bang, break the rules, etc.), you earn a sentence in the SHU.

These poor misunderstood inmates aren’t just put there because of a lack of bed space. They earned it! They know the rules and what happens if you break them.

So these inmates find themselves in the SHU and still want perks and privileges. They have conducted themselves to the point to where they have very little coming; so be it, it’s their choice.

In closing, like another letter-writer stated in the paper, “Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.” Some people just make bad choices.

David Lee



DA must ask arresting deputies why suicide victim was jailed


In regards to the June 12 article “Jail staffers knew inmate was suicidal,” about the woman who committed suicide while in jail, as a person who held a seat on this county’s mental health commission, I just want to say that I hope the District Attorney’s Office will also ask the arresting deputies why they chose to jail her rather than put her in psychiatric hold upon observing her wrists and bald spots revealing self-abuse.

Do we even have any psychiatric hold facilities yet? Back in 2005, when I sat on the commission, we sure did not have the facilities for it, making us nationally lawless!

Joseph A. Villa



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