Challenges and strategies in prison

I had never been in prison before, and the first time I had to walk through a puddle of human blood, I knew that I was amidst constant danger. I was 23 years old and locked inside the high walls of a high security penitentiary.My goal was to avoid the chaos while simultaneously preparing for […]

Educational Opportunities in Prison

Many readers write me with questions about educational opportunities in prison. During the more than 21 years that I have served, I’ve worked hard to educate myself. Those efforts paid off, as Mercer University awarded me an undergraduate degree in 1992, and Hofstra University awarded me a graduate degree in 1995. I urge all those […]

Comments on Ted Koppel’s Prison Special

The television room at Taft’s minimum-security camp was packed last night. Many of the inmates gathered to watch Ted Koppel’s two-hour show on the Discovery Channel that detailed California’s troubled prison system. Not long ago, Governor Schwarzenegger renamed California’s Department of Corrections. Now it uses the catchy phrase “Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections,” or some […]

Thriving Through Adversity: 3rd Quarter 2007

During this past quarter I’ve moved into my third decade of continuous confinement. I am glad to have more than 20 years of continuous confinement behind me, and I’m hopeful that I can conclude my sentence from my current place of confinement, in Taft, California. I have been in the Taft prison camp for more […]

Avoiding the Prisoner Profile

Every man in federal prison is assigned to a particular job. At Taft Camp, where I was transferred in June of 2007, I was assigned to work in the food service department. As far as prison jobs are concerned, I consider my job at Taft one of the best work assignments that I’ve had during […]