Monday, November 24, 2014
You write on your website that you spent time in prisons of all security levels. What levels would that include, and how do they differ?
I began serving my sentence in a high-security penitentiary. The name of the prison was the United States Penitentiary in Atlanta. Forty-foot tall walls of concrete surrounded the penitentiary. Administrators governed the prison with many rules and regulations that restricted liberty for all of the people inside. The prison confined individuals who served long sentences and who had histories of violence or escape. I did not have a history of violence or escape, but my sentence was of a sufficient length that administrators thought it wise to confine me in a high security prison. I served the first seven years of my sentence inside that environment, during which time I had to walk through many puddles of blood.
Then administrators transferred me to a medium-security prison. Restrictions were lighter than in the high security prison. That means we had more opportunities to spend outside of our cell. There were more opportunities to visit. There was less violence and the population was less volatile than inside of the high-security penitentiary.
After a couple of years in medium-security, administrators transferred me to a low-security prison. In low-security, the population was very different. I found higher levels of education. There were far fewer acts of violence. Acts of violence were more isolated and individual rather than organized with groups. Prison gangs were less present inside the low-security prison, too. Instead of living in cells, we were confined in open dormitories.
I served my final decade in minimum-security camps. Those camps did not have any acts of violence to speak of. Time inside differed in remarkable ways from secure prisons. There was more liberty to walk around and there was a total absence of gang presence. The population had a higher education level, as a whole.
Prisons operate different security levels for economic reasons. Higher security levels have a much higher guard-to-inmate ratio, which influences costs in a major way. To confine a prisoner in minimum security may cost less than $20,000 per year, while confining a prisoner in a maximum-security penitentiary can cost north of $75,000 per year.
Days since my release from prison: 469
Miles that I ran today: 0
Miles that I ran so far this week: 12.31
Miles that I’ve run during the month of November: 153.15
Miles that I ran so far in 2014: 2,203.29
Miles that I need to run in order to reach my annual goal of 2,400 miles: 196.71
Miles I’m ahead of schedule to reach my 2,400-mile goal by the end of 2014: 41.76
My weight for today: 168