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Battling Injustice: the BOP and Corrupt Judges

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Judy, Gary and Annie at home, 2006
(Image by Judy White collection)
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Judy, Gary and Annie at home, 2006 by Judy White collection

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Battling Injustice: the BOP and Corrupt Judges

Background: Gary White was a county commissioner in Jefferson County, Alabama. Good friends with Les Siegelman, he introduced Les's brother, [former] Alabama Governor Don Siegelman to Richard Scrushy, a local Republican businessman. Because of this, White became inextricably intertwined with Siegelman, who was one of the biggest targets of the Rove-directed, heavily politicized Department of Justice [DOJ].

Scrushy and Siegelman were later indicted and convicted on charges stemming from that relationship. According to affidavits provided by Gary [and Judy, who was also in the room] White was asked to perjure himself before a Grand Jury in order to make the case against Siegelman and Scrushy. White refused and the very next day, the DOJ started delivering subpoenas to build a case against him. White is serving ten years and has been moved most recently to Federal Prison in Arkansas. [BOP is Bureau of Prisons.]

Installment #21 - links to entire series at end of article

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My guest today is Judy White, fearless fighter for husband Gary's more humane treatment in federal prison. 

JB: Welcome back to OpEdNews, Judy. We haven't talked for a while. What's new?

JW:  Finding time and energy in the midst of government-sanctioned abuse is and has been a challenge.  What is not and will never be in short supply, however, is material and information that the public SHOULD have the opportunity to learn about, that the government and BOP seem anxious to go to extreme lengths to keep hidden and quiet.  It is endless.  And tragic.

JB: What do you mean?

JW: Gary has been in Forrest City [Arkansas] since February 6th.  It is the "same song, third verse", as the BOPers there have continued the same abuses we have seen and experienced in Millington/Memphis and, before that, in Edgefield, SC.  Among the medical abuses Gary has shared since his arrival in Forrest City have been the deaths of two prisoners, another prisoner who had two massive heart attacks within a two-week period without adequate treatment and care, a prisoner who has repeatedly lost consciousness - he passes out - in the presence of BOPers who have not rendered aid as they are required to do, and yet another prisoner maimed for life through having much of his foot amputated.  

The amputations, in particular, are horribly tragic and just amaze me.  I mean, I go out into the public every day, and I have spent more time at medical facilities than I care to admit, yet I have never seen people walking around with untreated gangrene or sepsis and I never see people having body parts amputated rather than having successful medical treatment that maintains the health and viability of little things such as FEET.  THIS IS AMERICA - not some third-world country!

JB:  I remember the Edgefield prisoner's amputation story well.  What about Gary?  How is he?

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missing her man on her birthday
(Image by Judy White collection)
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missing her man on her birthday by Judy White collection

JW: As for Gary, his prescription medications have been withheld, all of them some of the time and some of them all of the time, and since his illegal transfer and other endless ongoing abuses, he has not been allowed to see a doctor, not even a prison doctor.  Not once, despite the BOPers' classification of Gary from the inception of his imprisonment as "chronic care" and their written statements in his medical records going back at least until July of last year that they suspect he has cancer and that he should be "observed" for "suspected malignant neoplasm."  Even when Gary's lawyer has spoken directly with two of the prison employees responsible for Gary's care, informing and inquiring about the withheld prescription medications, they have done nothing.  Under any standard, the BOP falls far short of providing medical care that avoids violation of the Eighth Amendment.

JB: So, why does this happen? How can they behave this way?

JW: The answer, I believe, lies in the incestuous relationship between the BOP and a disinterested and corrupt federal judiciary, with judges directly participating in the "deliberate indifference" toward abuses of prisoners' civil rights.  Simply put, they just don't care.  Judges - at least in our experience - seem to enjoy satisfying their and the public's bloodlust, handing out harsh, excessive, abusive sentences in violation of due process and equal protection requirements under the ignored constitution.  

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Joan Brunwasser is a co-founder of Citizens for Election Reform (CER) which since 2005 existed for the sole purpose of raising the public awareness of the critical need for election reform. Our goal: to restore fair, accurate, transparent, secure elections where votes are cast in private and counted in public. Because the problems with electronic (computerized) voting systems include a lack of (more...)

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