T Nation

Jail House Fitness...

http://www.laweekly.com/ink/05/11/features-duersten.php

"This guy at Pelican Bay told me that he and his cellmate would exercise up to four or five hours a day,? says Jessner. ?It stayed with me sort of as a vision of Hell: They are in these tiny little concrete cells; one of them is running vigorously in place while the other one?s doing ?burpees? ? sort of like jumping jacks mixed with push-ups ? for hours every day.? As a result, most AB members can break their restraints, as Jessner demonstrates by putting his wrists together. ?They use one of the cuffs as leverage to break open the other cuff.? Five years ago, an AB member named Jeff Milton went berserk in a Los Angeles courtroom, breaking his cuffs and pitching a TV across the room.

um…

Might be off topic, and the knuckledragger in me that magnified this point in the article…

But should I start doing burpee’s for hours a day?

If you feel that you will need to break out of your restraints in the near future, maybe?

(After reading that article you wonder why they bother giving out life sentences to these scumbags, just hang the lot of them.)

Hmmm… aren’t the solutions obvious?

  1. Stronger restraints. They used to be called “shackles.” Nobody breaks out of those.

  2. Put them in smaller cells, and leave the shackles on. Let them try running with a 4 inch chain between their ankles. And if they can jump, that’s a clear sing that the ceilings are way too high. Is it prison, or a summer camp?

Right now, prisons have become criminal training centers. They take law classes to learn how to better fuck with the system and train all day at the gym. They come out stronger, faster and trained in the fine art of loophole exploitation.

[quote]pookie wrote:
Hmmm… aren’t the solutions obvious?

  1. Stronger restraints. They used to be called “shackles.” Nobody breaks out of those.

  2. Put them in smaller cells, and leave the shackles on. Let them try running with a 4 inch chain between their ankles. And if they can jump, that’s a clear sing that the ceilings are way too high. Is it prison, or a summer camp?

Right now, prisons have become criminal training centers. They take law classes to learn how to better fuck with the system and train all day at the gym. They come out stronger, faster and trained in the fine art of loophole exploitation.
[/quote]

That might be fine if our judicial system wasn’t flawed and if rehabilitation wasn’t a goal at all. Not everyone in jail (as has been proven) even deserves to be there. While I am sure that is a minority, the fact is it happens. Because of that, I am not one of those who thinks everyone in jail needs to be treated like caged dogs.

Well said Prof.

Theres a big difference between treating someone like a dog, and paying for an education.

Every system is flawed, we can’t just say: “Well gee, a few of these people might be innocent so lets just make life easy for all of them.”

While I agree with Pofessor X (for the most part), i have committed NO crime and would LOVE for life to afford me the opportunity to work out whenever I want for as long as I want, instead of whenever I can sneak a moment from work/family, etc.
I’m sure most of you out there are also tired of footing the bill for the guilty to have a health club membership. I’ve visited several prisons and installed the cabinets and countertops in many new facilities (worked in a cabinet shop in college). They have nicer gym equipment than the gym where I train. They have a better gym atmosphere and selection, as well (no shortage of power racks, not cluttered with cardio equipment- mostly iron).
They get 3 hot meals that are supposed to be of balanced nutrition, a place to stay, free gym, and little itenerary to keep up with- a far cry from the days of “breaking rocks” all day.
I get to work my ass off all day, sneak a trip to the gym either at 5am or lunch, hustle to take my kid to whatever practice/game/after school event he has, usually go BACK to work. All the while struggling to barely make the mortgage payment and HOPEFULLY, maybe have enough left over for a supplement or two without bankrupting myself. Ends rarely meet, but I keep em close enough to wave at one another…

Come to think of it- maybe I should kill someone and get a 5-10 year vacation.

[quote]got_beer? wrote:
Theres a big difference between treating someone like a dog, and paying for an education.

Every system is flawed, we can’t just say: “Well gee, a few of these people might be innocent so lets just make life easy for all of them.”

[/quote]

Life isn’t “easy” for them. I am not sure which jails you are referring to, but the average inmate is not happy to be there. These are still human beings. Short of those who commit murders and crimes that put them on death row, they still have that right to life as a human…simply one in custody. I am actually for the death penalty in some cases, however, I also know that the system is largely flawed and still racially tilted. I won’t overlook that fact just so some can prevent a prisoner from lifting his own body weight in his cell. Your argument is one heard by those who always refer to “them” and “they”. The system is not perfect, therefore, it could possibly one day be “you”.

I am not blind to there being some prisoners who have no right to ever see daylight again due to the crimes they have committed. However, I also know there are people in jail for lesser offenses.

[quote]mica617 wrote:
While I agree with Pofessor X (for the most part), i have committed NO crime and would LOVE for life to afford me the opportunity to work out whenever I want for as long as I want, instead of whenever I can sneak a moment from work/family, etc.
I’m sure most of you out there are also tired of footing the bill for the guilty to have a health club membership. I’ve visited several prisons and installed the cabinets and countertops in many new facilities (worked in a cabinet shop in college). They have nicer gym equipment than the gym where I train. They have a better gym atmosphere and selection, as well (no shortage of power racks, not cluttered with cardio equipment- mostly iron).
They get 3 hot meals that are supposed to be of balanced nutrition, a place to stay, free gym, and little itenerary to keep up with- a far cry from the days of “breaking rocks” all day.
I get to work my ass off all day, sneak a trip to the gym either at 5am or lunch, hustle to take my kid to whatever practice/game/after school event he has, usually go BACK to work. All the while struggling to barely make the mortgage payment and HOPEFULLY, maybe have enough left over for a supplement or two without bankrupting myself. Ends rarely meet, but I keep em close enough to wave at one another…[/quote]

Tell me you can’t POSSIBLY be fucking serious with this post…

Someone writing a diatribe on why prison life is better than the outside world. I’m not even going to get into all of the things you DON’T get in prison. I think I’ve seen it all now.

Prof. once again, Amen. “They” became a friend of mine, a very good man, who was recently sentenced injustly to eight years. Mica, enjoy your vacation.

Branch: Well, you know what they say about the guilty.

McCoy: No.

Branch: Even the guilty get worse than they deserve.

McCoy: …


JMB

[quote]CC wrote:
mica617 wrote:
While I agree with Pofessor X (for the most part), i have committed NO crime and would LOVE for life to afford me the opportunity to work out whenever I want for as long as I want, instead of whenever I can sneak a moment from work/family, etc.
I’m sure most of you out there are also tired of footing the bill for the guilty to have a health club membership. I’ve visited several prisons and installed the cabinets and countertops in many new facilities (worked in a cabinet shop in college). They have nicer gym equipment than the gym where I train. They have a better gym atmosphere and selection, as well (no shortage of power racks, not cluttered with cardio equipment- mostly iron).
They get 3 hot meals that are supposed to be of balanced nutrition, a place to stay, free gym, and little itenerary to keep up with- a far cry from the days of “breaking rocks” all day.
I get to work my ass off all day, sneak a trip to the gym either at 5am or lunch, hustle to take my kid to whatever practice/game/after school event he has, usually go BACK to work. All the while struggling to barely make the mortgage payment and HOPEFULLY, maybe have enough left over for a supplement or two without bankrupting myself. Ends rarely meet, but I keep em close enough to wave at one another…

Tell me you can’t POSSIBLY be fucking serious with this post…

Someone writing a diatribe on why prison life is better than the outside world. I’m not even going to get into all of the things you DON’T get in prison. I think I’ve seen it all now.[/quote]

As for seriousness- mostly, hell no. The part about gym facilities- yes. Better inside than out- HELL no.
The only person I’ve known BEFORE and after prison was for a non-violent crime and was admittedly “afraid” to go back to “normal” life. He was more comfortable in than out. He WAS guilty, but knew a bunch of people on the inside that he thought didn’t deserve to be there (as a rehabilitated man- he always admitted he got what he deserved).
Like I think PX is trying to say (not trying to speak for him, just interpretation), I am for harsher treatment of VIOLENT CRIMINALS, but definitely not for “most” inmates. As he said, they shouldn’t be caged dogs.

I suppose I should separate my cynical humor from the seriousness on further posts.

A person told me that his cell mates put a trash bag inside a pillow case and filled it with water. They used them as dumbells.

The same person told me that he worked up to 1,000 pushups in a hour. He said the biggest of his cell mates would have them sit on his back while he did his pushups.

On a work day near an airport he watched the big guy rip a tree right out of the ground. The tree had a six inch diameter trunk.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
pookie wrote:
Hmmm… aren’t the solutions obvious?

  1. Stronger restraints. They used to be called “shackles.” Nobody breaks out of those.

  2. Put them in smaller cells, and leave the shackles on. Let them try running with a 4 inch chain between their ankles. And if they can jump, that’s a clear sing that the ceilings are way too high. Is it prison, or a summer camp?

Right now, prisons have become criminal training centers. They take law classes to learn how to better fuck with the system and train all day at the gym. They come out stronger, faster and trained in the fine art of loophole exploitation.

That might be fine if our judicial system wasn’t flawed and if rehabilitation wasn’t a goal at all. Not everyone in jail (as has been proven) even deserves to be there. While I am sure that is a minority, the fact is it happens. Because of that, I am not one of those who thinks everyone in jail needs to be treated like caged dogs.
[/quote]

Well, of course. I’m not talking about places like camp cupcake here. I mean for repeat offenders of serious crimes (assault, rape, murder, etc). I’d even support a kind of “3 strikes” policy where 1st and 2nd time offenders wouldn’t get the “full irons” treatment. Don’t come back a 3rd time, though.

As for rehabilitation, is see very little of it working (none at all in fact.) If only for the stigma of having a criminal record and being an “ex-con”; it’s extremely difficult for them to get any type of meaningful employment. Giving them menial jobs and asking them to “be nice” certainly won’t work when they know they can make oodles of cash by selling drugs, pimping, etc.

The way I see it, the rehabilitation aspect is mostly PR to try and make ourselves feel better about caging other humans. I’d be all for it if we were actually serious about it. But for it to work, you’d need more smaller prisons and a lot more community involvment.

[quote]apayne wrote:
Prof. once again, Amen. “They” became a friend of mine, a very good man, who was recently sentenced injustly to eight years. Mica, enjoy your vacation. [/quote]

Yes.

Only mine got 7-14. He’s 61. He’s in poor health–diabetes and the range of things that go with it.
His daughters became angry with him when he insisted that, at the age of 20, they either stay in school or get jobs. They demanded an “allowance” of $50K each per year (twins). When he refused, they suddenly “remembered” that they’d been abused as 5 year olds.
So he’s spent the last 4 years out on bail going to hearing after hearing. His big love in life was competitive shooting. So he lost his kids, wife and hobby. He spent almost 100 days in Jail waiting for sentencing. There were almost 1000 total charges. All but 2 were thrown out. But the judge still felt it necessary to lecture him yesterday at sentencing for not showing “remorse”. If you didn’t do it, how can you show remorse? And the judge berated him for making his friends (about 30 of his friends braved the Nor’easter to be there for him) victims too.
Fuck the legal system.
There really is no justice anymore.
I used to be a real law and order guy. Thought if the cops arrested you, you were guilty, all that.
Now I know better. I know how bad a great number of cops are. I know how bad prosecutors are–they’re supposed to be there for the truth and justice, not to further their careers at the expense of others–and I know how bad judges–with their big SUV’s and appointments for life are.
I’m with Professor X.

And for the guy who joked about killing someone for a 5 year vacation…man, that was bad taste. What I really want to say is…man, that was a fucking dumb thing to say…but I know you (hope you) didn’t really mean it.
You know what my friend has had to eat since he’s been in?
Grilled cheese sandwiches and graham crackers.
For religious reasons he’s a vegetarian…doesn’t even eat eggs but will drink milk–now how’s a person supposed to live on grilled cheese and graham crackers?
Would it kill them to give him a cup of cottage cheese with each meal?

As for seriousness- mostly, hell no. The part about gym facilities- yes. Better inside than out- HELL no.
The only person I’ve known BEFORE and after prison was for a non-violent crime and was admittedly “afraid” to go back to “normal” life. He was more comfortable in than out. He WAS guilty, but knew a bunch of people on the inside that he thought didn’t deserve to be there (as a rehabilitated man- he always admitted he got what he deserved).
Like I think PX is trying to say (not trying to speak for him, just interpretation), I am for harsher treatment of VIOLENT CRIMINALS, but definitely not for “most” inmates. As he said, they shouldn’t be caged dogs.

I definitely agree with this. While its often true that many people make a mistake that costs them years of their life, there are people in prison who (I believe), such as those mentioned in the article, that bring on the idea of harsher treatment for inmates. Its true that there are innocent people in prison and maybe its true that some people in prison are getting more than they deserve. But I think that there are people who are so dangerous that they need to be restrained WAY more than what they currently deal with. Again, thats my opinion, Im in no way an expert on this, but from my limited view it seems that for certain cases, stricter punishment is needed. Now, this probably isnt as easy as it sounds, considering the resourcefulness of certain prisoners plus the cooperation they often recieve from the outside world and/or prisoners entering/reentering the prison system. Add that fact the prisons today are very organized structures set up and run by criminals who rule with the same hand that they used before they were put in prison. Not to mention the fact that changing the prison system would be extremely difficult politically and financially, seeing as how we spend billions of dollars each year on it already.

“deep breath” ok, well, got that off my mind. im going to go lift some weights.

After having done a few short stays while awaiting bond and a little time for sentencing, I’ll tell you It’s no picknick. At 19 I was picked up after a pretty severe assault on someone, and thrown in with the serious criminals. The murderers, rapists,agravated assault, a few for kidnapping. The tension and level of aggression was so freakin high that if you weren’t ready to swing at a moments notice chances are you were going to get stomped.The first thing I HAD to do was defend myself to make sure I wasn’t labeled a punk. That was because someone wanted to take my food. It’s also the best way to test someone to see if they are a punk.
Think about that next time you sit down to a nice PWO meal. You may have to work hard for it, but at least your wife isn’t going to jump across the table and try to take your eye out with a plastic spoon, just to see if you are a punk or not.

You’ve obviously never met my wife when she’s having PMS…