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Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! This is my often neglected blog mostly about my travels across country in my mobile billboard truck as I attempt to engage in dialogue with people in hopes to wake us up and inspire action to change our country and communities and selves. And it is froth with my opinions, insights, analyses toward that end of holding all life sacred, dismantling the empire and eliminating violence while creating the society and life we want

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Something about the womyn….

It takes a good hour to process me into jail. The womyn jailers here also act surprised to see the likes of me – if they only knew, I hit the court in my airplane incognito clothes. They are very respectful, even almost pandering – bringing me a drink of water, first of all, and then in a paper cup, 2nd of all, because I tell her I can’t drink out of {fuckin} styrofoam.

But to my surprise, that I did my best to hide with my confident authoritarian face, no one could finger print me as I told them I’m allergic to chemicals after reading the list of shit in the ‘lotion’ they wanted to put on my fingers.

They then offer baby wipes instead, that I refused as well after reading the horrific chemicals people in Adel are putting on their babies’ bottoms, which one of the womyn whose initial concern was amping up toward irritation, explains slowly to me that she uses these on her own child’s bottom – a child who has rashes frequently.

I give her my serious “see! Your child has chemical sensitivities too!” nod while I encourage them to use coconut oil, cocoa or shay butter or even any vegetable oil.

They tell me how sensitive and expensive the finger printing machine is so they don’t know about these other natural products. I declare oil without chemicals is much better than oil with chemicals and suggest they go to the kitchen, if there is one. As they cannot find any natural oil, I then offer to go to my truck – or give them the keys – to get the proper non-toxic oil for the finger printing machine.

They give up, hand me my jailhouse rags, accompany me to the bathroom to hold out a clothes bag for any article of clothing I have on that isn’t white. Hmmmm

I am not made to strip as I have on a white t-shirt, or squat frontwards and backwards – as we were forced to do in North Dakota jails – nor was I told to bend over, spread my cheeks, lift my breasts. My hair was not searched, nor my mouth as North Dakota did.

I am lead to cell block 400 where I find out later the 9 or 10 female inmates are housed, this being a mostly male jail.

The 8 womyn are all sitting down at two long tables eating their dinner, for it is 5:00pm. They all look up in concert, beaming at me, as I get led into the cell. Introductions are interrupted when the jailer asks me if I want food.

I begin to say hell no, but the womyn all jump up to circle around me and motion discreetly, alert eyes wide with begging, for me not to refuse. So I don’t.

After the jailer leaves, they emphatically explain to me that I will be put in solitary confinement if I refuse 3 meals in a row. Then they all figure out how to divide up my food tray so amicably and quickly I have no idea what was for dinner!

Everyone settles back down, warning me not to say or do anything I don’t want seen or heard because they are under 24 hour every second observation and eavesdropping.

There are two Black womyn, one brown womon, 4 so blond and bright blue-eyed white women they are almost translucent, and two brown-haired white womyn. I will learn later that at least half the womyn have been arrested with either a boyfriend, husband, or 18 year old son. One womon has a $20,000 bail – drugs – and another womon has a $12,000 bail – drugs.

One womon was accused of stealing toothpaste and the others are there on parole violations. From what I can discreetly learn, most are locked up for speeding tickets, driving without or on a suspended license, operating a vehicle under the influence, and even failure to obey the legal command of a police officer.

I believe the drug of choice for at least three of the skinny skim milk pale white womyn is amphetamines.

But really, they are all in here because they are poor and can’t make bail. Some have been here a few dayz, others weeks. They are all waiting for their trial, which means they haven’t even been proven guilty.

The womyn let me know what I need to do, what the rules are, who my cell-mate will be, when lock-down happens, what to expect next. This is the first time my crime for being in jail is not standing up for justice, at least not directly.

I mean the other times, the womyn have already known I’m a water protector or anti-war or Black Lives Matter activist, etc, because they know of the protests or actions. This time I’m just trying to enter a “Not Guilty” plea and get a court date.

I am most anxious about my truck but I try to trust the judge and the police officer who called 9-1-1 to give them my license plate number and instructions not to tow her.

The womyn quickly show me a pile of books and encourage me to grab one quickly before we are all locked in our cells. Most of the books are bibles or bible-related pamphlets but there are a couple of mysteries so I grab one and head off to read as the locks bang into place.


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