LATE TO DEBATE???
Article by Patrick Swiney
June 11, 1998
Copyright June 1998
I speak to you from the absolute pits of hell, an
Historically, the State of Alabama has been notorious
for its atrocities
within its prisons. My fellow Americans and human
beings, nothing has
changed. I humbly convey to you an ancient scripture:
"Let he who hath
eyes - see and he who hath ears - hear."
I hear corrupt politicians promise you to lock them
up and throw away the
keys. I also hear your cheers! They - our only defender
overcrowd the prisons dangerously. The Federal Courts
say nothing! I also
hear your cries to pack them in like sardines -
for who cares? News leaks
out about the atrocities: the physical, mental,
emotional - all types of
Human Rights abuses. The courts turn their heads.
Again, I hear your
cheers, as though to say: Crucify them! Crucify
I've read these words all my life.
To put things into perspective, I'm a 53-year-old
man in very poor health,
a former police officer of 13 years. I have been
held in this septic tank
(Holman Prison in Alabama) for 10 years on a wrongful
major point I submit to you is that I can see both
sides of the coin.
Actually, I can see all sides of that coin, for
much more than two sides
Holman Prison in Atmore, Alabama, is known as the
"Boddom" which is
Southern for bottom. Either way, it's as low as
you can possibly go in
this country. In response to your cheers, may I
say that you have been
successful. We are packed in like sardines: the
Innocent - The Guilty -
the Sick - the Lame - the Lazy - the Cripple - the
Crazy - but all God's
children. "If you have done it to the least of these..."
At times, I absolutely hate 90% of these people which
I mostly refer to as
sick-sorry-slime. But when I hear the masses cheering
lies of corrupt politicians, then these people in
here start to look much
better, for even the sick-sorry-slime extend to
an old man far more
compassion than the corrupt politicians of Alabama
and their cheering
section. The result? The blinded masses stubbornly
follow the pied piper
closer and closer to total destruction. So be it.
We have become a nation of individuals - "Self,"
with the general view that
if adversity does not effect me, then I don't care.
We have become a
people completely self-centered, self-righteous,
and isolated within
"Self," even to the exclusion of children and grandchildren.
This is in
direct conflict with our natural instincts. Americans
have lost their
"natural" instincts. They have mutated.
I think the Apostle Paul describes our nation of
today perfectly. "This
know also, that in the last days perilous times
shall come. For men shall
be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters,
disobedient to parents, unthankful-unholy, without
truce breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce,
despisers of those who
are good. Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of
pleasures more than
lovers of God. But they shall proceed no further,
for their folly shall be
manifest unto all men, as theirs also was." 2Tim3
Holman Prison is made of open-filthy dorms - very
crowded to say the least.
The showers, commodes and lavatory are included
within the open dorms.
None are vented. The humidity from the showers pours
dorms. Any gases from the toilets pour out in these
dorms. Humidity is
always extremely high. Mold and mildew grows on
the walls and ceiling.
The floors are always damp. The heat index remains
ungodly high in summer
- cold and damp in winter. The place is crawling
with cockroaches the size
of your hand.
We can only send out bed linens to the laundry once
a week. That, after
perspiring on them all week long - a daily wetting
of these linens. 96 men
live in a dorm approximately 35 feet by 108 feet.
That's an average of 39
square feet for each man - less if you deduct corridor
spaces for walking
from one place to another. Less still, if you deduct
shower, commode and
lavatory spaces within the dorms. Here is where
each man spends his entire
life, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year after
year after year...the
Innocent - The Guilty - the Sick - the Lame - the
Lazy - the Cripple - the
Crazy - but all God's children.
Can you possibly think of any other condition that
could breed diseases any
better? It appears to be "the perfect" environment
for breeding a culture
for many deadly diseases that we know. Possibly
many that are unknown to
modern science. A perfect place for these deadly
diseases to mutate and a
wonderful place to share our joys with the rest
of the world - transporting
to "Your" world.
Here at Holman Prison, we have had a large breakout
of TB. Some have died,
others transferred never to be heard of again. Respiratory
our "normal" or our most common. Medical care is
almost a joke. Our
Deputy Warden (Jerry Farrell) is charged with the
responsibility of seeing
we get proper medical care. Only thing is his wife
is an Administrator
with Correctional Medical Services (CMS). This is
the company holding the
contract for medical services (much like the company
holding the contract
for telephone services). Mrs. Farrell has a vested
interest in saving
costs for her company. Every dollar she does not
spend on our medical
care, is profit in her company's pocket. Thus, you
have a direct conflict
with medical care and the Deputy Warden. Does this
project overtones of
Not only that, but Deputy Warden Jerry Farrell forces
all inmates outside
at 7 AM under the guise of cleaning the dorms. However,
every single dorm
cleaner will tell you that it was much easier cleaning
when the people were
NOT outside. In the past 15 days, they have been
alerts in our area due to 2,000 out-of-control fires
in Mexico. The entire
Southeast has been covered with insecticide-laced
smoke. All TV stations
have transmitted this health alert, warning people
to stay indoors -
especially the sick and older people. All this week,
South Alabama has
been under a heat alert! The heat index has been
into the 120 degree F.
range. Again, warning people to stay inside. And
warning the sick and elderly to stay indoors.
Yet, every day Warden Farrell has forced inmates
outside for two hours.
Many are older and sick. They have no place to sit,
except on the
concrete-covered ground. They have no shade to seek.
They must stand or
squat for those 2 hours in the blistering sun and
which is contaminated with smoke and pesticide.
I myself have suffered 3
heart attacks, developed inflammatory spinal arthritis
and have also
developed emphysema. Yet Warden Farrell forces this
old man outside with
all the young punks and maladjusted people, posting
no guards whatsoever.
And, yes, the State Capital in Montgomery, Alabama,
backs Jerry Farrell
completely. The Alabama Good Ol' Boy's Club is a
alive and well. Welcome
to Alabama the Beautiful, and the Alabama Department
of Corrections. Yes!
I still can hear your cheers!
Even if myself and the rest survive all the airborne
insecticide, the heat,
the humidity, the filth, the abuses, it for certain
weakens the immune
system. And that welcomes diseases, many of which
may be fatal. Fatal not
only to me, but to you, the cheering masses.
They cannot isolate these possibly deadly germs to
this hell hole. The
guards come and go. Nurses, doctors, administrators,
postal workers, and
visitors carry these germs-bugs-viruses with them
when they leave. Guess
where they go? To you via schools, churches, mail,
grocery stores, work
places, and many other ways.
Since you are creating your very own nightmare, it's
tempting to refer to
this as "poetic justice," but in all truth I do
not feel this way. I'm
actually greatly concerned for all of you. "Forgive
them Father for they
know not what they do."
No! More tax dollars are not the answer. You'd just
make officials of
Alabama even richer. Then they'd cheer you - in
silence of course.
I do not have the answers, but I felt I "must" let
you know the truth.
Yes! The sky is falling. Don't look up. Just take
I am far from being eloquent with my words, my communicating
extremely limited. If I have offended anyone with
my words, then Good!
That's my intent. In closing, I shall add that I
speak of the cheering I
have heard. But where is the so-called silent majority?
I so wonder if
God is more disgusted with the ones who cheer the
Human Rights Abuses - or
more disgusted with the ones who sit and do absolutely
Although it means pain and suffering, I shall choose
torturous, sounds of the followers of their corrupt
pied piper than to hear
the silence of the spineless nothings. For it's
better to light one
candle, than to curse the darkness.
Respectfully, I am,
Patrick Swiney 154406
G79, 100 Warrior Lane
Bessemer, AL 35023
See what Chief Federal District Judge Charles
R.. Butler, in Mobile, Alabama, did to Patrick after he read Patrick's