"Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.'
"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?'
"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'
They wheeled her into a hospital in Anchorage, Alaska, handcuffs on her wrists and shackles on her ankles. In this condition the woman agonized through labor. "All the other delivery rooms had husbands and fathers," says Jane Evelyn Atwood. "She had two prison guards." Only when doctors ordered an emergency cesarean section were the restraints finally removed. Atwood has photographed in 37 women's prisons in nine countries. (For additional images, see page 78.) But this scene, she says, "was one of the hardest things I've ever had to photograph."
Mauer (1999, pp. 92-93) documents some of the measures recently used to implement the “increasing the unpleasantness of prison life” policies that include shooting around prisoners to keep them moving, forced consumption of milk of magnesia, placing naked inmates in “strip cells,” and handcuffing for a long periods of time. Of these methods we selected handcuffing applied to women prisoners delivering a child (Atwood, 1998, pp. 66-67, Siegal, 1998, p.71) as a focus of our study.
What Kennedy taught the doctors is that knowing the truth is barely a beginning. The real work comes in getting people to see it.
About 5 percent of female prisoners arrive pregnant, according to a 1999 report by the Justice Department. The Sentencing Project, a research and advocacy group, estimates that 40,000 women are admitted to the nation's prisons each year, suggesting that 2,000 babies are born to American prisoners annually.
« Older THE SAINTLY SINNER.... | Hooded police commandos [weari... Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments
Buy a Shirt