This story was told by a person incarcerated at Los Angeles County Men’s Central Jail.
UCI: What else do you want people to know about your experience?
Caller: It’s, like, a messed up experience because, like, you telling me that I have something and you’re not following the proper protocols, like, you’re not doing anything, and I feel like that’s wrong. The way they – the way these facilities from prison to county jail, the way they treat us and the way they do us – handle us in regard to this is kind of wrong. It’s disrespectful.
It’s, like, I know that, okay, yes, I’m wrong, I broke the law, I’m incarcerated, I get that. I’m, okay, I’m wrong. I can accept responsibility for my actions for committing a crime, but this is a health issue. This is a health-related issue, so why are we still being judged like we’re criminals?
Like, people would advocate for animals rights more than they advocate for us, and we – we’re still human. And that’s where we see, like, if this is your animal doing this, like I told the nurse, if this is your animal, you would make sure you go to the veterinarian, all kind of doctors, medicine, you would be on it, right? See, well, that’s my animal, this, that, I can’t do you like that, you’re not going to do case by case, see, so you put a more effort into an animal than you do humans because we’re incarcerated.
And that’s what I want the people to understand is, like, that’s how we are viewed. Like, just because you commit a crime, it’s, like, you’re still human. And doing the medical issues, we – we’re not – we don’t get that same benefit as everyone else. We don’t get to pick and choose what we do.
We have to give what’s there, take what they have that’s there for us. They don’t – and there’s no negotiation in between. They’ll tell you, “Oh, you get the Johnson & Johnson.”
Then two or three days later they’ll get someone else, “Oh, you only can get this shot, the Pfizer.” Well, hey, I wanted that Pfizer. Why you tell me no but you telling him yeah? Then when he asks for the Moderna, you tell him no, but then later on you’ll tell someone else, “Oh, we got the Moderna.”
I tell you, why y’all playing games? Why just we can’t – if we are trying to do something that’s right and help protect ourselves as well as everyone else, then why can’t we be judged accordingly? It’s not something that y’all [unintelligible] serious that we shouldn’t take [unintelligible], but when we try to be serious about it, the way y’all are acting towards us and all the – the problems and the complication we have, the attitude we have to get it, that’s what’s making people kind of, like, look at it the wrong way.
And that’s why I’m – I’m kind of, like, regretting that I should do it because it’s, like, y’all forcing me to take the vaccine shot, but on the same token, you’re not even forcing these same issues on your officers. So it’s, like, how can he – if you’re telling me I can’t come back to the prison because I’m not vaccinated, but how can this officer come to the prison to work and he ain’t even vaccinated? So it’s, like, you’re not treating us the same if this is for public safety.
It’s, like, how are we not treated the same. And this is someone who goes into society every day. We don’t know what they do when they go home. Me, I’m here. I haven’t went nowhere. And that’s why I don’t understand, like, been in this – I went – came into county jail for a whole year and here it is at the last couple of months, oh, you’re – you came in contact with somebody.
I haven’t even been around nobody new. I haven’t even been nowhere. I’ve been locked in my cell 24 hours a day. I come out to go shower for 30 minutes every three days – every other day. So where am I come in contact with somebody at?