Wednesday, February 5

Half a Life in Solitary: How Colorado Made a Young Man Insane


You may have heard the statement 'the law is an ass'. As this story proves. So be wary of treating legal decisions unconditionally. The legal system does sometimes lead to bad decisions. 

If you can, see the movie Papillion son. And read the book. We've got both at home. It talks about this exact situation but also is quite uplifting on how it shows the indomitable strength of a man. 

This also requires freedom of speech to fearlessly raise these issues.  Also a legislature willing to listen and fix the laws. And a judiciary which is independent. Be very happy you're in the uk and are a Brit where all this is taken for granted son. But keep fighting and be aware. States become authoritarian if not kept in check. Imagine if you had religious nutters running the show? Calamity. 



Half a Life in Solitary: How Colorado Made a Young Man Insane

Half a Life in Solitary: How Colorado Made a Young Man Insane

A young man was sentenced to life in prison without parole after a dubious trial. And then things got worse.

Andrew Cohen Nov 13 2013, 6:00 AM ET

Associated Press

The story of Sam Mandez is appalling on so many different levels it’s hard to know where to begin. Convicted for a murder no one has ever proven he committed, sentenced to life without parole at the age of 18 because the judge and jury had no other choice, confined for 16 years in solitary for petty offenses in prison, made severely mentally ill by prison policies and practices, left untreated in that condition year after year by state officials, Mandez personifies the self-defeating cruelty of America’s prisons today.

And yet Mandez is not alone in his predicament. All over the nation, in state prisons and federal penitentiaries, officials are failing or refusing to adequately diagnose and treat inmates who are or who are made mentally ill by their confinements. The dire conditions in which these men and women are held, the deliberate indifference with which they are treated, do not meet constitutional standards. And yet there are thousands like Mandez, symbols of one of the most shameful episodes in American legal history.

The Crime

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