Jails / Prisons : Black People Working in Prisons


Nov 21, 2006
As i watch these MSNBC prison documentaries, i see so many Black people working in them ... the overseers of the prisoners (slaves). It's us.

Now, i aint mad at no bodee who has to work and raise their Families, taking whatever job they can get. I understand this part, but can't help but look beyond that, to the historical parallel that is now before us.

They have us watching each other, and reporting to them, about us.
WTH!! You sound like your talking about innocent kidnapped and physically tormented slaves on a plantation picking cotten, we're talking about convicted criminals, murders, thugs, robbers and druggies. (speaking about 90% guilty in prison, not the 10% innocent) So what 'slave' overseers? I'm sorry but thats backwards spin talk. I could care less about what goes on in prison, because, I'm not there, nor do I associate with people that could land me there from guilt by association. Prison is suppose to be a very ugly place for you to think about BEFORE you commit the crime. I have a cousin in prison for murder, I hope it's rough for him, I hope he hates every day he has to wake up. He took his girlfriends life, an innocent girl, while he was high and on drugs. I love him, but it's not about blaming everyone else, he did it, he killed her so he needs to have freedoms taken from him, he needs to live miserable. He TOOK AN INNOCENT LIFE FOR CHRIST SAKE. I could care less who snitches on him, or who is yelling at him 'times up, hang up the phone'. He's not on vacation, I don't visit him, and won't because, he needs to know pain, on any level because none of it equals the pain her family is living with loosing their beautiful daughter. She was a very, very loving girl, what he did he deserves every bit of misery he gets. I can dish out justice and still love my cousin. Because I believe very much in owning up to your actions, being in charge of YOUR destiny.
So lets stop portraying our "brothas' in prison like poor ole' fiddler from roots.
Before you go there, yes, there are more white folks that should be in prison and are not, but that doesn't mean I need to run out get ignorant and take their place and keep their cell nice and warm for them until the ''whiteman' decides to lock up his cousins.


Sep 12, 2005

Had anyone takin the time to actually click on the article link I
provided in MY first post, you couldv'e seen that the article was
talking expressly about Unicor and it's influences.

There's even a direct line to the president of Unicor (e-mail )
attached, for those courageous enough to contact him to
express your distaste. (pend.)

However, not only Unicor, but there are several other private
entities (Ford motor Co, Nordstrom ect.) along with even the U.S.
Military that are current benefactors of prison 'labor.'

Now for some, this may be alright however, I thought the purpose
of this thread was to show collusion on the part of an already twisted
american ideology and economic system of capitalism that is yet
determined to keep OUR People as 'slaves.'

This IS proof positive.

Again, no one is excusing criminals, they exist
in all 'races,' however the continued crimes of america are still bigger
than the individual, if WE are to judge, then it behooves US to 'judge'

And finally I submit that it is the very 'badge' of america, that ought to be on trial. Cause, since when does the pot call the kettle BLACK?


Keita Kenyatta

going above and beyond
Feb 7, 2004
mrron said:
Blacks working in prisons is a positive thing. Who else would you want to have mentor our lost young black men.
I personally, historically and consciously consider this to be an insult. However, let me slow this down a little. The idea that so many young black men are in prison is not only the result of a well thought out and structured ant-black male plan...but it is a business. The original plan was not for black males initially, it was for black women. This is thoroughly researched and documented in a work by Dr. Charshee McIntyre entitled: "Criminalizing a Race".

1. The accelerated rate and pace of incarcerating and criminalizing our young did not occur until Jimmy Carter's "Global 2000 speech" whereby he outlined to the European world that "They were fast becoming a minority and that by the year 2000 the darker races would begin to out-number them."

2. Prior to this speech, you could not find guns and the proliferation of drugs in our communities. Prior to this there was no such thing as a minor being charged as an adult. Prior to this there was no wall street based prison complex that you could buy stocks in. Prior to this there was no large body of African American officers working in the penal system.

3. The idea that it is a business that "officers and politicians" who have any brains have bought stock in as a viable "money making entity" with privitization and products to boot, also means that no one politically or otherwise is going to be about the business of doing "anything that's going to take money out of their pockets" like finding alternatives for the revolving wheel that now no longer houses "grown men as it once did, but our children".

4.Since it cost more a year to keep a person in prison than for them to go to college, someone is clearly dealing with sound economics with a gauranteed return on their investment.

5. The idea that African American ofiicers are their keepers is no different than the "over-seer on the plantation"...they were black too, and just like the black officers, they had to report to and do the unpleasant chores that master said to do to his own people.

Would you rather have white men do it? I have a step son who is currently in training to become a corrections officer. My former wife is a supervisory corrections officer of almost twenty years, and she is extremely proud of the fact that she does the work that she does, and have helped as many young black men as she has. I work in law enforcement also, and have done a lot for some our young black men.

I did not want to skip over this, for if you have indeed helped any of them then you are a rarity and need to be commended for maintaining some humanity. This however is not the norm. Just as the "over-seer" was trained and conditioned by master on the plantation, so too are the African American officers who come into the system to work. The first thing they are taught is to "seperate themselves from the fact that they are black and the people incarcerated are black. Black does not exist..."they are CRIMINALS, point blank ! Do you want the speech?

"These are the same ones out there breaking into your homes that you work hard to buy. These are the same ones selling drugs to your children as they are going to school. These are the same ones out there robbing and snatching your mothers purses and raping your daughters and wives". This is the "First Phase" of being conditioned and alienated from self and color.

Second Phase: Master has to see if you can kick some black @ss and hopfully impress him with your ability to do your job the way they want it done. In other words, " they want proof that your being black and the person you're about to beat down being black doesn't mean anything to you".

These men are in jail because they, in most instances, are not capable of living in society without being menaces to it. Even with all of the ones we now have in penal system, the black community is not safe, and there are very few examples of law abiding black males to set examples for other young black men to follow, without the incarceration option, the black community would be under marshall law.
I almost convinced myself that you were somewhat "conscious and socially understanding in terms of WHAT IS REALLY GOING ON AND WHY, UP UNTIL I READ THIS PART !! Truth be told: "Their society is a menace to them and they are but pawns caught up in the game, the miseducation, the racism, the structured enviroment they did not create and...oh, I almost forgot, " the idea that when they wake up each day, they can see black doctors, officers, teachers, dentist, business owners and every other productive Black male role model as an example for them in their lives...or did they all move out the communities leaving the babies no other images of inspiration or anything else to see? HHhhmm....I wonder!?

The correctional officers job is not to oppress these young men, but to encourage them to learn to read and to learn a skill so that they can become productive and law abiding citizens. Unfortunately, many of these young men don't really want any help, and are hell bent on causing as much disruption to the general peace as possible. Those people are not deserving of any more consideration than they have been given already by the court system.
What a scathing indictment of our young! The system, the court, the community. Listen...If I had my way, I wouldn't change any of their negative feelings and thoughts or actions, cause truth be told, they have a divine right to feel and think and act the way that they do...I would simply point them to the white community and the white businesses.

There are numerous programs available to these young men, to enable them to avoid the traps that landed them in trouble in the first place. There are opportunities for concerned people, like those on this site, to volunteer to help these young men by providing reading lessons to some, religious services, cultural lessons etc. It is mostly the uneducated and illiterate who end up there. Since our people are represented in disproportionate numbers, than it is high time that we do something about it ourselves, and stop seeing this as some kind of enslavement system. If you visit prisons in the mid west i.e., Iowa, Montana, Idaho, Arkansas etc., you will see very few black faces, but you will see the same attitudes and circumstances that bring about these results.
What would you call it if you learned that their option was to incarcerate us rather than allow us to be free? What would you call it if you learned that "the ratio of black men in prison today is the same ratio that it was in the times of Marcus Garvey"?

We need to do something about this now, it is our problem, largely the result of neglecting to educate our boys, to monitor their behavior and to give them reasons to be black and proud. Nothing will happen until we stop blaming the white man and start taking responsibility for our communites
I don't think we should call it "blaming the white man at all", a more appropiate term would be "hold accountable"...and that's the big big problem right there. We don't hold that white man or his system ACCOUNTABLE FOR WHAT THEY HAVE and ARE PRESENTLY DOING.

Please Wake up brother !!


Well-Known Member
Jun 23, 2006
Keita, I read your comments on my remarks. Not once did you mention cjduhon's reply, which was far more relevant to the issue than anything you had to say. What is your solution to black on black crime, dammit? You tell every body here that. If you don't want these dregs locked up, what do you want done? Should we release them all to your community? I know more about racism than you will ever know, but I don't give them the kind of credit you do, for having the kind of intelligence it would take to control the minds of our people, unless you just think we are mindless puppets. All black people are aware of racism, they hear about it and see it everyday. What is so new about what you are saying? Criminal behavior in most countries is treated far more effectively than it is here. This is a soft system, where seventy percent of the inmates who are released, go out and commit another crime, because life in prison is easier than it is in society.

These people have better medical, dental, eye care, food service, recreation, other options etc., than most working people do, and it's the working people who have to pay for their free ride. Their biggest problem is the gate surrounding the facility. The people they victimize are overwhelmingly black. You visit a black neighborhood, and you have to have three locks on all your doors. There are very few businesses because of the threat of crime, they have virtually shut the black community down. I watched a report today on the news about Philadelphia, a city I work in and live near. The crime rate there is totally out of control, black kids ages 12 and up are beating up school teachers as well as their peers. Is this okay with you? Yeah, I know your answer, it's all orchestrated by the white man, right? That's just a cop out, and gives you an excuse to do nothing.

Some of our people are so Afro centric, that they think everything that goes wrong in the world was aimed at them, and created by the white man, even hurricanes. No one is plotting anything against us except black nationalist who make outrageous accusations about what the white man is doing. You are creating a lot of paranoia with these sentiments you are expressing. No wonder little black boys don't think they have any reason to live and be peaceful. It's all of this foolishness that you are putting in their heads.

Who would you rather have as correctional officers? Prison is becoming a black community, predominantly, in some areas. There are no slave masters, you must have a "slave mentality" to begin with, to even think that way. I don't know any slave masters. If there are more black's in prison, than it makes sense to have more blacks running the place. If you go to Miami, Los Angeles, Houston etc., you will see more hispanic officers. I think people who call their own people slaves actually have an inferiority complex. In their minds, the white man is definitley their superior.

Keita Kenyatta

going above and beyond
Feb 7, 2004
Kind of touchy when I present the facts, huh? Here I was giving up "documentation from slavery on down to the present and you chose to act as if it wasn't real. Wonder why? However, let me clear up something. Please don't buy into the media machine. Since we are only 12 to 13% of the population in this country, it stands to reason that there are more white people in prison than black. Now where do you think they commit their crimes? That's right, where they live...yet you don't hear jack about white on white crime, now do you?

So why the media FOCUS ON OURS??? All people commit crimes where they live and yet we are the only ones being highlighted by the media. Now what's up with that? That was as bad as people complaining that "black people live on welfare when reality states that more whites are on it than ours...yet again the highlight was on us placing a stigma where it didn't belong. I know Philly and Camden quite well and I understand the politics behind both of them. No where else could white people get a black mayor to bomb one of our own neighborhoods as if it was a war zone.

And as for your last statement on the white man's SUPERIORITY? The white man will never be superior to us any day of his existence, which is why I try not to use words like "white supremacy"...it's white domination not superiority. The truth of the matter is that we are so conditioned as a people that we are now imitating them 70 years later. Go back in time and see. They started the gangs, the territory street battles that our young are imitating 70 years later. They started the drive by killings on their own that our young are imitating 70 years later...and they once filled up the prisons that our young are now doing 70 years later. Come to think of it, we didn't even create any ghettos...our people inherited it from them when we migrated to the north from the south.

I know you're glad to have a job and to think that you're providing a viable service and all that, but then again...so did the black over-seers on the plantation.

Our children are not blind or dumb...we have abdicated our responsibility in favor of the dollar bill and living next to our oppressor and like them. They see it too. Then we have reactionaries such as yourself who like the fake doctor only "sees the disease and not the cause" and then incorrectly thinks that addressing the disease will cure it. Everything is Cause and Effect. Our children and our reality is the Direct Effect of a Cause that we as black people in this country try to sweep under a rug.

I'm not a black nationalist, I'm still the same disenfranchised African that was bought to this country via my ancestors...and by force. There's not enough money or jobs to make me forget this or what was actually taken from me (us) historically, culturally, socially, linguistically, spiritually and economically.

I started seeing during the vietnam war when I was drafted in the marines. prior to that I would say I was pretty darn blind and pretty darn Americanized. I think I see very clearly after having lived all over this country and over-seas. I know I see very well. what's interesting about my earlier write up is that I didn't lie not once and I really think that is why you got so emotional...you remember those conditioning and phases too, don't you?
It's nothing new, the military does it too. They are just bolder with theirs cause they'll let you know in a minute that if you have to you must kill your mother if she is a perceived threat to national security...I mean, "white security".


Sep 12, 2005
I don't have the exact figures in front of ME
however, (I'M actively searching for them again)

I had recently been sent some information regarding
the prison population of the world-- (someone help a Brother out
if YOU'VE gotten the same figures...) and it was eye-opening
to say the least.

Something like 3% of the worlds population is in jail, out of
the 6.5 billion people on the planet, 64% of these people are
jailed in amerikkka, 87% of these amerikkkan prisoners are BLACK.

If this is not disproportionate, for those whom may believe that
the vast majority of the amerikkkan prison population are whites,

I'VE got nothing else to say.

Again I'M searching for these numbers and when I find them,
I'LL post them here for clarity.

Meantime if YOU need immediate clarification of these 'facts,'
check'm for YOURSELF, they'r there.



Sep 12, 2005
In the meantime......

(Courtesy of **************)

New Underground Railroad Needed as Black Men Flee the Pursuit of the U.S. Justice System
Date: 02/19/2007
Hunted like runaway slaves, the Black male needs more support than ever from community leaders and leading Black gatekeepers instead of criticism and condemnation. As of December 2005, over 2 million prisoners occupy the U.S. Prison system, the largest incarceration rate in the civilized world, and at least 65% of those are Black males.

According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Justice, 3,145 Black males are sentenced per 100,000 Black men in the United States, compared to 1,244 Hispanic male inmates per 100,000 Hispanic males and 471 white male inmates per 100,000 white males. These numbers are astonishing as well as questioning.

At first conclusion, one would tend to believe that Black male imprisonment is more needed than any other race of males in the U.S., implying Black males are criminal at heart and destine for a life of incarceration. No man is born a criminal and not one is destine for incarceration, except in the unproductive practices of the U.S. justice system.

No more an institute for rehabilitation, the U.S. prison system has repositioned itself as a system of collecting and housing bodies as possessions of the state to be further used by bidding corporate entities for production of cheap product goods and services, in addition to providing rural families with employment.

Black men have become a commodity in this systematic market and little effort to change this system has been attempted by anyone; politicians, activist groups, churches, and especially Black leaders. Instead, Black men have to carefully watch their steps to avoid fitting the national profile for potential incarceration.

During slavery, when Blacks sought to escape the pursuit of the slave masters and catchers, our brave sister, Harriet Tubman, accompanied by others, devised an escape route called the Underground Railroad to assist runaways in their search for freedom. Today, a new Underground Railroad has to be put into place to help Black males avoid being ensnared in the trap set for them by the U.S. justice system.

Anger and despair engulfs many Back males today because of lack of supervision, family structure, guidance, and support from those who should support them most, such as fathers, teachers, neighbors and of course the Back woman. Yes, there is much temptation in the “hoods” but Railroad stations must be put into place by concerned Black community groups, preferably the churches that will divert and transform all the negative energy in Black males into positive energy.

No help or solutions will come from the political system or the justice system because it is those systems that hunt our Black men, so any effort to get attention from those systems would be a waste of time. Innovation in the form creative action from schools, families, and volunteer community groups would do more because it is these institutions that have a better understanding of the Black male than anyone.

Sadly, society and even the Black community itself have become complacent with what is happening to the Black male population and have seemingly given up, believing that Black men are of no use and hopeless. This is untrue, the problem is there are no institutions in this society that have acknowledge the problem and decided to take action to reverse the trend.

When an issue is treated as untreatable, then the issue will of course only get worse, but negative imagery of Black males in the U.S. society has gained a strength that only seems unbreakable, yet is not. Divine intervention is needed to break the yoke of persecution against Black men.

Black leaders must stop depending on politicians and political policies to end the struggle for Black equality and begin taking to the streets erecting Railroad stations that address the problems as needed, with love, power, and a will to defeat this modern day institution of U.S. re-enslavement of Black males.

CR Hamilton




Well-Known Member
Jun 23, 2006
This topic is about blacks working in prisons, not rehashng the history of slavery, or why more whites are not in prison. I really don't care about why there are not more whites in prison, I guess that is their problem, and they can handle it the best way they can. I will say this, I still see businesses florishing in the white community and property values are up. I don't see kids standing on the corner threatening and intimidating law abiding citizens that live in the community. They have massive drug problems, but it's in their house.

We need to be concerned about our community and the reasons that are kids are committing crimes in the first place. That is the problem that is leading to the prison population being what it is. All of this stuff about Unicor is irrelevant. The program is voluntary and is for those inmates who want to do something productive with their lives when they have served their time. The vast majority of people on this site say that they have or have had a relative in prison. Why not talk to them about the prison industrial system. Most prisons don't have the program. Most prisons don't really change inmates because they don't want to be changed. Most started disobeying authority at an early age, and can't be helped. No father around is a major factor. No family structure, no religious teaching, no respect for their own community. Let's face it, these are suppose to be men, who by definition, are suppose to build and protect their community, not destroy it. If all you can see is the white man behind the destruction, then you may as well throw your hands up in the air and give up, because they are not going to come in on a white horse and save us.

All of this research to try to prove what? That there are more black men in prison than their percentage in the population. We already know that, we don't really need details. The fact is they all, for the most part, committed a crime to get there, and that is a big facture.

The fact that I work in law enforcement doesn't influence my way of thinking at all, other than the fact that have have access to more valid information, which many people aren't really interested in, because truth is not on their agenda. The blacks working in prisons where there are black inmates, is far better than having all white faces. If it is not than explain why.


Well-Known Member
Jan 9, 2007
Notwithstanding the fact that most people seem to have not realized this topic is about Blacks working in maximum security prisons, and not general population prisons, there is only one question regarding it: Should no Black people work in prisons period? This question appears to have been toyed with, but not necessarily answered. I know Mrron has asked it a number of times, but with little success in getting a reply. So I challenge any and all to answer this question, because it is the only relevant question respecting the topic at hand.

In any case Destee I'm uncertain as to what your basic point is other than you see it problematical that our people work in prisons. If this is a correct understanding however, what do you propose should be done regarding Blacks working in prisons?


Jan 22, 2001
betwixt and between
Website Consultant
NeterHeru said:
Notwithstanding the fact that most people seem to have not realized this topic is about Blacks working in maximum security prisons, and not general population prisons, there is only one question regarding it: Should no Black people work in prisons period? This question appears to have been toyed with, but not necessarily answered. I know Mrron has asked it a number of times, but with little success in getting a reply. So I challenge any and all to answer this question, because it is the only relevant question respecting the topic at hand.
Brother NeterHeru ... rarely, if ever, will there be only one (relevant) question that comes from a discussion started here. While your question is a good one ... Should no Black people work in prisons period? ... i never asked that, or even thought it, when creating this thread. I'm of the mindset that there will be Black People doing a little of everything, as always.

My query was to those who work in these jobs now. I was petitioning them to share with us, as i'm sure they have insight most don't have. I'd love to be privy to that, to have more information than MSNBC provides. That was my purpose for starting the thread. While the maximum security prisons are the ones featured on MSNBC most often, i'd be interested in listening to any Sister or Brother currently working where our people are incarcerated.

In an effort to answer your (and Brother MrRon's) question ... while i'd love for none of us to work within the system that oppresses us, that would probably mean none of us could work anywhere. That's not realistic.

In my opening post, i clearly said we can't be mad at these Sisters and Brothers for taking care of their families. It was not my intention to attack them, or any such thing. Quite the contrary, i'm welcoming them to join us ... here in the discussions or in a live voice chat session.

NeterHeru said:
In any case Destee I'm uncertain as to what your basic point is other than you see it problematical that our people work in prisons. If this is a correct understanding however, what do you propose should be done regarding Blacks working in prisons?
No Brother, i don't see it as problematic. It's just our reality. It's been our reality for hundreds of years ... Black Folk watching over other Black Folk. It's really more a symptom of our lack of industry, business, economic opportunity, etc., for our people. If Black People could offer other Black People good paying jobs, they'd probably have to get more white people to man their prisons. For that matter, if we could offer each other jobs, fewer of our people would resort to illegal activities (selling drugs).

Nothing should be done about those that work in the prison system. If we are going to do something, i'd much rather we focus our attention on those locked up there ... or headed in that direction.

Again, it is my hope that someone who works in such an environment, will share with us. In the meantime, as you can see, the discussion will go in a variety of different directions. That's okay with me! :)

Much Love and Peace.



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