July 26: Confronting the California Department of Corrections (CDCR) In Sacramento

The San Francisco Bay Area Stop Mass Incarceration called for and organized week long activities including daily freeway bannering, and street corner agitation.  On Friday, July 26, SMIN activists, newly active, friends and staff of Revolution Books and youth from the Revolution Club -12 people in all – headed up to Sacramento, the state capitol.  Joined by four members of Souljah, a Christian group of formerly incarcerated, we marched to CDCR headquarters in downtown Sacramento chanting:

“Prisoners Are Human Beings! Stop the Torture Now!”

“The CDCR has blood on its hands! Meet the prisoners’ 5 demands!”

“Governor Brown has blood on his hands! Meet the prisoners’ 5 demands!”
More people joined the protest at CDCR headquarters.  One of the men with Souljah commented that he had been to five prisons and had spent some time in Pelican Bay. He said he had been locked upon the hole for two months at one prison during which time he had been chained up and left for most of the time in the dark. The rally continued, boldly and loudly outside CDCR for an hour, with banners and enlargements stretching across the main entrance.

July26_4Four of us attempted to enter the lobby to present the 5 demands to the CDCR, and to demand to know why they could not immediately meet them. They were stopped at the door by a security force. These CDCR goons employees claimed they didn’t know anything about solitary confinement or the prisoners’ demands, and refused to even let us in to present them or speak to any CDCR officials!


Observing the cops on bicycles and some on horses, large a force for 20 protestors, one SMIN activist, said, “It struck us how even our small group represented something much larger – the thousands of those locked in solitary confinement, the 2.4 million warehoused in prisons in the U.S., and the potential to put an end to their whole system of mass incarceration and torture.”


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