The Gordian Knot – by Steve McCann

This treatise explores how the government uses legislation and law enforcement to repress and exploit the poor (predominately people of color). It also touches on, though lightly, how the dividing lines between races are exaggerated to the benefit of the government. What I excluded from this piece, because of its tendency to confuse and overwhelm the reader, is the nefarious background that ultimately gave birth to our present situation. Much of this touches very close to home for me, having grown up in the ghettoes of Dallas’ inner city.

In Solidarity,


Should we assume a charitable posture and disavow malevolent motives on the part of the prison administration – a charitable posture indeed – we must assume that the aggressive and abusive behavior of many prison guards is the product of ignorance rather than training. If this is the case, these same individuals would likely also be inclined to repeatedly poke a caged animal with a stick for amusement, for this is the insinuation about prisoners; they are animals; that is why they are in cages.

We hear a lot, these days, about disinformation and misinformation, and as disingenuous as this insinuation about prisoners is, it is the epitome of disinformation, misinformation, propaganda or whatever other name is put to it. It is a fanciful mix of truth, hyperbole and lies. While some few prisoners may have declined themselves to this dictum, they are but a rare few. Most are simply products of their environment, an environment that, to a large extent, our government created. And this is where our story begins.

In 1516, a highly respected gentleman in English society, Sir Thomas More, Lord Chancellor (the equivalent of the Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court), said, “Men are not born thieves; society creates thieves of them and then punishes them for what they become.” Replace the word ‘thieves’ with ‘criminals’ and it could ingenuously be proclaimed that at no time in the history of man has this aphorism been more true than it is at present in the United States.

Our government, through legislation carefully designed to grow the police state, has turned the living environments of the nation’s poorest citizens into veritable war zones filled with violence and danger, and, in so doing, has made criminals of many who may not have been so otherwise. Then, to further exacerbate this situation, the local police and other law enforcement agencies incline themselves to target these poor neighborhoods for enforcement activities, further enticing and inciting violence. There is nothing like the wisdom of pouring gasoline on an already raging fire. Then, using the press as its brush, the government paints a specious picture of reality that, although false, readily consumed and digested by the populous, most without question or concern for its verity.

The government’s actions here constitutes a political Gordian knot which is not all that different from its physical counterpart in history. This knot of deceit is near to, if not, impossible to disentangle enough to be understood, and is no easier to coherently present once one has finally apprehended it. Alexander the Great, rather than untying, cut King Gordia’s knot. Bold though I might be, I would say this knot is the work of true criminal genius.

There is much background information that could be connected to our present situation, but I will not present it here, as doing so would introduce a myriad of confusing detail and would serve to strengthen rather than weaken the knot before us. Let us begin our journey, then, by addressing in more detail, though somewhat reversing the order of the information which I have presented thus far.

What is the essence of this specious picture the government has painted to dupe the public, and why might they desire to do so? How might they accomplish such a thing? The government’s painted picture promotes to the public the idea that much of the whole of American society is racist. This is a government taken from Machiavelli’s 1513 treatise “The Prince”: Divide et impera (Divide and rule). Simply stated, it is easier to rule a divided people than a people united. A divided people can offer little resistance to tyranny. The mechanics of this will become more clear as we progress through the following paragraphs.

Where does the press fit into this scheme? The press reports to the people; this is their business. The public loves stories, especially sensational stories; the more sensational the stories are the better the public’s reception of them, and crime reporting is nothing if not sensational. This makes the press the perfect paintbrush for the government’s artistry, the perfect vehicle for misinformation distribution. And since it appears to be the press painting the picture, it is they who, in the end, will be held culpable. The government slyly maintains deniability throughout. There is the possibility that the press is willfully complicit in this deception, but I would prefer to think they are not. This is a judgment, however, that each citizen must themselves consider.

Why do law enforcement agencies target the impoverished neighborhoods for heavy-handed enforcement activities? These neighborhoods (and their residents and visitors) are targeted because it is axiomatic that organized crime is king amongst the poor. It is known far and wide that these areas are infested with drugs, weapons, violence and more, making their constituency and their patrons and guests easy marks. If we have not done so already, here is where we should begin to ask a number of questions, beginning, with, “Why?”.

Why are our impoverished neighborhoods infested with drugs and gangs and weapons and violence? Because these are the bedfellows of organized crime, and these areas serve as the throne room. Why is organized crime so regental in poverty, but so pauperous amongst the affluent; why the stark juxtaposition? These areas are heavily populated by society’s downtrodden, the disenfranchised, the outcasts, many of whom have been shunned even from birth; they have the least to lose and the most to gain from becoming criminally involved. Here, however, we need to go further and consider not only who is involved, but also what it is that is attracting organized crime. And here is Pandora’s Box, just waiting to be opened.

As ineffectual at curbing alcohol use and abuse as vice laws were during Prohibition, so are they at curbing drug use and abuse today. The primary difference being that the lawmakers were oblivious as to the effects such would have, in 1920 when Prohibition was enacted. With Prohibition nearly four decades behind them, however, they were fully aware of the effects when, in 1971, then President Richard Nixon declared the now infamous “War on Drugs”. Likewise, the effects of such legislation were well understood in the 1980s, as we entered the “Tough on Crime” era, in the 1990s when the Stupid on Sentencing period was inaugurated, and the effects are no less understood today as our lawmakers continue to perpetuate this evil.

The government has been phenomenally successful in convincing the public that drug laws make society safer. This is a lie! Drug laws make society less safe, not more. The truth is this: prohibitive drug laws cost society legitimate business opportunities; they cost society legitimate jobs; they cost the government legitimate tax revenue, and they do not stop, prevent or even slow drug abuse. No, quite the opposite is in fact true: prohibitive drug laws exacerbate drug abuse. But the enactment of prohibitive drug laws spawn something far worse: prohibitive drug laws open the door to organized crime, and with it comes gangs, weapons, and increased violence. Prohibitive drug laws hand over to organized crime a business worth hundreds of billions of U.S. Dollars annually, and destroys the lives innumerable individuals, children, as well as adults.

Why would the government do such a thing? From the government’s perspective there is much more to be gained – in terms of money and control – from drugs being illegal than from them being legal. While there are private sector jobs lost by making drugs illegal, there are many more jobs created, mostly in the criminal justice field: judges, lawyers, prosecutors, police, jailors, prison staff, court employees, etc., etc. While there are tax revenues lost in this endeavor, several other revenue streams are created: fines, fees, court costs, property seizures (i.e. civil asset forfeiture), federal grant allocations to support state and municipal level criminal justice activities, etc., etc. Prohibitive drug laws exemplify using law and law enforcement as economic development tools, creating literally millions of U.S. jobs, but they also exemplify something far more sinister: they are tools to grow the government, to establish and grow the police state, and to solidify government control over an ever growing populous. This should scare the hell out of every citizen, without exception.

How does this make men, and women, and even children, criminal? The business of recreational drugs being in the hands of organized crime, and organized crime operating (with their accoutrement of gangs, weapons and violence) primarily within the geographical boundaries of poverty makes for an environment that few would feel safe in. Naturally, people will do whatever they believe is necessary to secure their safety. In America’s ghettos, oftentimes, this means carrying and potentially using weapons. Do you see a criminal here? Being surrounded by drugs, and people buying and selling drugs, using and/or transporting them, it is only natural that the subject, often a child, would end up, sooner or later, doing the same. Do you see a criminal here? Can you imagine the inevitable encounters with police and other law enforcement agencies, especially since, as we have already established, impoverished neighborhoods are targeted for onerous enforcement. And this brings us back to our specious painting of reality.

To the casual viewer of the reported news (by this I mean anyone who is viewing but is not intent on analyzing it to learn the untold story that lies within) it would appear that people of color are conspicuously more criminal, and more violent, than the white majority, and prison population data appears to support this notion. But one most wonder if this is an accurate depiction of reality. Accurate or not, this view has been accepted and adopted by many, and it foments racial hostilities and impresses upon the viewer that our society, as a whole, is fundamentally racist, another false representation of reality.

Travel with me through Alice’s looking glass, and try this exercise:

Gather all of the crime reporting at your disposal. Separate them into two groups using poverty as the filter. Move all of the material that involves an impoverished neighborhoods, or a resident or visitor thereof, to one side. Move all that remains to the other. Closely examine first one group and then the other. Regardless of where in the U.S. you live you will likely find that the poverty group 1) is larger than the other, 2) involves more violence (both from private citizens and from police actors), 3) involves more people of color (leaving the impression that people of color are being targeted rather than the actual target of poverty), and 4) more often involves drugs, to one degree or another. To the casual viewer this group appears heavy laden with racial overtones; the other group suggests no such overtones.

Racism does exist in our society, and it is perpetuated from all races, not just whites and blacks. And some do use their positions to act out their racial prejudices; we have seen this clearly. But racial antipathy is a learned behavior; it is taught as an ideology and promoted throughout our society as a means to keep us divided as a people, to weaken our voice, and to weaken our ability to put up resistance. Racism does does exist in our society, but our society is not fundamentally racist; this is a grand illusion. I cannot, however, say the same about our government, for much of the genuine racism that exists in our society is systemic; that is, it exists within governmental policy. It is then projected onto society by government actors and their actions.

Steven McCann 2096064

Eastham State Plantation

2665 Prison Road 1

Lovelady, TX 75851

Break the Chains: Ours, then Theirs! – by Steve McCann

Shake Off the Manacles that Enfetter you, my friend,

And those you love as well.

Give those gyves away!

Throw off the Hobbling Inertia that Narrows the Gate before us impassable.

Hobbles are for horses, not for humans.

Life, liberty and pursuit of Happiness lie just beyond the gate…

Inviting…Taunting, Tempting, Tantalizing.

Why stand we here idle?

Have we no mind, no will, no spirit?

Are we so very weak?

Is life worth so little…

Are our lives, and the lives of our loved ones, worth so little…

As to be purchased at the cost of chains and slavery?

What is life in chains?

What is life in slavery?

What is life disjoined from liberty?

Let us All stand tall! Let us All make some noise!

Let us All do something together.

Let us All do



Steven McCain 2096064

Eastham State Plantation

2665 Prison Road 1

Lovelady, Texas 75851

Mishandling of Covid-19 at Eastham Plantation – by Steve McCain

Chronology of Events

Dec. 30, 2020 Random Covid testing conducted

Jan. 3, 2021 A resident in my dorm was confirmed Covid-positive. The dorm, thus, was placed on quarantine lockdown.

Jan. 19, 2021 Medical quarantine terminated

Jan. 26, 2021 A Covid-positive resident collapsed. The dorm was placed back on lockdown.

Jan. 29, 2021 Another dorm resident hospitalized, coughing up blood, Covid-positive. Quarantine extended to Feb. 14th.

Feb. 4, 2021 Unit-wide lockdown for shakedown initiated

This is where we stand today. I have this morning watched as the residents of two other dorms were paraded out of their housing units wearing only their boxer shorts and marched to the north chapel, where they were held while their personal belongs were molested by the very same individuals who are bringing Coronavirus into this facility.

The concern,

It has been manifestly demonstrated that this virus, oftentimes, is carried and transmitted by individuals who are asymptomatic, not knowing even that they were infected. What could the prison administration possibly be thinking here? In just the past ten days, my dorm has lost two of its residents to Coronavirus. Now granted, that does not sound like a lot, at least until it is viewed as a percentage of the whole. Two residents of eighty constitutes 2.5% of the dorm’s population. Imagine that as the same percentage of the U.S. Population, something more than 8,000,000 people.

Unit-wide proactive (i.e. lacking a disciplinary basis) shakedowns, at least until this virus is reined in, are dangerous propositions. They are a gamble whereby the prisoners’ lives, without their consent, are being wagered.

Steven McCain 2096064

Eastham Plantation

2665 Prison Road 1

Lovelady, TX 75851

Transcription of Comrade Z Interview – from The Final Straw Radio, April 23, 2020

TFSR: Would you please introduce yourself for the audience? Who you are, where you are, how you got there?

Comrade Z: Hello Everyone, Thank you for having me on The Final Straw. It’s an honor. My name is Julio A. Zuniga. Alex is what everyone calls me, or Comrade Z for those who are standing with me 10 toes down in solidarity.

I am a survivor of B-Line solitary confinement at Dirty Darrington Unit and currently trying to reach out to activists and anarchists in the area who can help me organize a statewide work stoppage. Enemy of the State and of the Dirty Darrington administration, my whole heart and soul is hellbent on bringing the attention of the entire nation to the administration and it’s human rights violations, cruel and unusual punishment, physical assaults by staff, mailroom policy changes, inadequate law library, commissary price gouging, infestation of roaches, mice and spiders, sewage leaks in the cells, constant power outages, the list goes on and on. The torture tactics are of primary concern because it’s driving people to die by suicide. So far it’s been 1 suicide per year since I’ve been here. How I got here was because abolitionists in East Texas rose up against Telford Unit, for Housing Administrative Segregation inmates at that facility without telling the surrounding community about it. They were against it. People of New Boston, TX and Texarkana found out about TDCJ housing G4 and G5 offenders because an Officer Davison was murdered by a solitary confinement offender who was being tortured by Telford Unit by withholding his mail and refusing him basics he needed, like food. This caused the entire town to begin the takedown of wardens and the torture of all inmates by using lockdowns for 90 days or more, then by stopping all hot meals for an entire year in 2017. So, since that officer died in 2015, it was the people who brought forth change to that unit. It is now a pre-release unit, no administrative segregation offenders and no solitary confinement. I was not blessed with any kind of support, so I intentionally got into trouble just so they could ship me off. Best move I ever made, so I thought. However, that is how I ended up here.

TFSR: What can you tell the listeners about Darrington Unit and your experience being held by the TDCJ?

CZ: The Dirty Darrington Unit is a hub unit. Thousands of inmates pass through here weekly, transferring to other units, coming off of UTMB Medical Branch at Galveston, or Psyche Unit Jester 4. Some of them are bleeding, soiled in feces and urine. All mentally ill persons coming off Jester 4 have had no kind of hygiene for over 3 days. All these lay over cells are so unsanitary it takes a healthy person 24 hours to get sick by sleeping in one of these cells. There is nothing humane about that. They usually house people with wrong custody levels, endangering lives at will, resulting in physical and sexual assaults. It’s Dirty Darrington’s specialty.

I encourage you to ask administration how many lives Dirty Darrington has claimed because they refused to help suicidal inmates. Also, how administration uses offenders to snitch on others with a false hope of beating a disciplinary case, then throw them back into population, leaving them to kill themselves behind the dishonor. On the 2nd week of November 2019, a guy killed himself after spilling the beans on others. When he asked them to help him because he felt suicidal, they ignored him. This is the suicide I witnessed that really proved verbatim the words Sean Swain voices in Last Act of the Circus Animals. When Rico killed himself, the show was like Cirque de Soleil. You had every basic need availed to you – blankets, mattresses, toilet paper, toothbrushes, toothpaste, cleaning materials, officers serving trays like they do in population with full portions. They even gave us light bulbs. It was disgusting to see it. You saw paint crews, utility crews, the works. For a week the unit experienced humanity, but once the coast was clear and the administration got away with murder, it was back to torture tactics, a pattern I have seen one too many times on Dirty Darrington.

Overall my experience has been depressing, lonely, stressful, painful. I’ve seen this administration use psychological torture for 23 months straight, for this is how long I’ve been held in solitary confinement. Only recently was I magically released and placed in E-Line (G5) administrative segregation – the filthy administrative segregation area that is notorious for roach infestations, no lighting in showers, no restrooms on the rec yard so if you have to urinate or have a bowel movement you are going to on the same area men play basketball. Fecal matter is all over the floor and people wonder how they got sick. Easy – as soon as you come in from outside rec, they serve chow. If you have been playing basketball then munch on your baked chicken, then suck the grease off your fingers. You just sucked on chicken flavored fecal matter and urine. Dirty Darrington knows exactly what it’s doing. Environmental disaster, B-Line, E-Line, G-Line, A-Line, C-Line, D-Line are all torture areas. In the winter it’s cold showers. In the summer they heat your water for you. No coincidence. There is so much more. There are over 200 men in administrative segregation and solitary confinement on Dirty Darrington. Some men are going through it worse because they believe this is normal prison policy. It’s not. I’m here to expose this unit and it’s human rights violations. I appreciate you hearing me out.

TFSR: It’s hard to imagine that the staff and administration aren’t aware of the conditions there. Are they showing any signs of working to fix the situation?

CZ: I knew something was terribly wrong with this unit when it runs through 4 wardens in less than 2 years. They are aware of every single atrocity. They personally handle all grievances and it’s rare an inmate ever wins on Step 1. They have to go all the way to Huntsville with their grievance to get fair treatment. By that time it’s been 60 days solid since the claim was made.

It’s designed this way to ensure we never win any kind of grievance claim. Another way, as it is now, that they refuse us grievances all together on Dirty Darrington because they also are aware that if they hand them out they will be reading grievances for years. They know this place is crumbling to pieces. If it rains outside it rains inside too. The guards look like underwater welders when it rains. They wear rain coats indoors to stay dry. Nothing is being done except punishment and enslavement. I am on a mission to learn from outside sources how to organize, to create a psychological warfare on this administration in the name of all the dead that could not deal with their torture chambers and for the mentally ill who cannot speak out against them who are, as we speak, living in horrible conditions on Major Pharr’s solitary confinement. It’s only a matter of time before another death by suicide. We can thank Dirty Darrington’s Administrative Segregation ringmasters for imposing torture on the already weak men by starving them, by withholding their mail, by refusing mailroom to give them pictures of loved ones or birthday cards, or by sending their shakedown team to physically abuse them and confiscate their property. It’s all designed to break you. It’s happening every day.

TFSR: How do the conditions you’ve described above affect the health of prisoners? What’s the condition of physical and mental healthcare available at Darrington Unit?

CZ: Personally I don’t get sick easy, but since being on Dirty Darrington I’ve had a serious sinus infection, primarily from the mold in the showers and the dust that carries all kinds of germs. As far as psyche at Dirty Darrington goes, it’s got potential. As far as physical, you’ve got the infamous Nazi doctor Speer, extorting everyone, but not giving adequate care to anyone. If you get sick they still allow this idiot to practice. Nothing gets done about his childish outbursts. He once tried to do a rectal exam on me, He said it was my yearly check-up. This was the first time I met him. As he stood up and slapped on a latex glove my spidey-sense told me to ask a simple question, “What’s the name on the computer, sir?” He said “You’re Contreras #… blah blah blah” I was like “I’m out!” I’ve had problems with this doctor ever since, namely because retaliation is a trend on Dirty Darrington when you file a grievance. I tried to explain to everyone what this man tried to do. No one tried to help. He’s still here. All my medical treatment was taken away by this man for no reason other than I am or was chronic care hypoglycemic. If you have heat restrictions, work restrictions, anything that will make your ailment easier to handle Dr. Speer will terminate it and then send you into a Twilight Zone of sick calls, just so he can charge the co-pay. Others – he refuses to treat simply because it’s not life or death.

TFR: Can you talk about the suicides that you’ve been aware of during your time and are there any in particular you’d like to reflect on? Are there any strings that tie the circumstances together?

CZ: Well, I’ve been on Dirty Darrington for two years, going on three. I got screwed out of my legal work, got all my medical restrictions taken away, basically because I am indigent and I have no one on the outside to call here and raise a fuss, which is the only time you see inmates get what they need.

So, B-Line 3rd row, 15th cell, 2018 – A young man hung himself. The image of a nurse chest compressing this man never left me. It really caused me a lot of anger. It was senseless. It taught me just how they break men’s minds. It would disgust you. I remember this older man who would wake up screaming and just slowly, losing all reality, these torturers left him in that cell with a stack of trays, full of food with dead mice and roaches that he would just stack up toward the end of his sanity. Inmates could smell death. They tried to talk to him but couldn’t stand the stench of death. So, they brought Captain Lance the kitchen boss to remove the trays, stacked 20 high. But, you cannot talk to a broken man. He was a vessel, nothing more. After 2 canisters of pepper spray, still nothing until finally Captain Lance had the courage to tell administrators that he was no longer right. It was his voice that forced them to send him off that night, never to be seen again. For months they left that man in this condition. It’s happening now. This is normal? I’m not trying to hear that.

For these men, I ask to be armed with support, to feed the torturers a taste of their own medicine. I opened my eyes all the way at this past suicide in November 2019. I’m done talking. We need a bombardment of activism, protest, support. We need an uprising so this administration will be forced to take responsibility for all their fuckery.

One thing I know is we have nothing to gain for staying in good standing. “Good time credit” is not counting toward parole. “Work time credit” is another tool they have to control prisoners. Only the prisoners that still believe in the tooth fairy are too scared to accept this fact. People have tried for years to have these laws passed. Republicans are not interested in helping us. With a statewide work stoppage we will bring all these men’s dreams to fruition. We need to spread these facts to the entire state and shut it down. Stop slaving for your ringmasters. You want a real change, stop doing your slave jobs. Stop putting money in politicians pockets and ask them to put it your account to pay for the work you do. Slave days ended over 150 years ago – Why do you volunteer to work for the oppressor? Those of you who have no one, wouldn’t you like to support yourself in prison instead of risking solitary confinement for stealing food to sell in your living areas for hygiene. I can go on and on.

TFSR: What are working conditions like the prisoners incarcerated by the TDCJ as you’ve experienced? What sort of privileges come along with work, what sort of pay (if any), and sort of work is it?

CZ: They work these guys to exhaustion. They do not pay. The work is back breaking. No one will receive as much as an extra portion of food. These units are still slave plantations, only the name has changed. Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Research “The Sugarland 95” – You’ll see what I’m talking about. It’s time to bring this slavery to a screeching halt.

TFSR: How have you experienced support while you’ve been on the inside? What would you like from folks on the outside?

CZ: I had to go to extremes again to have the support I have today. I never conformed to prison culture. I love tattoos, motorcycles, art, hunting, fishing, boats and the only way I was ever going to see or hear about that is by reaching out. As a result of picking up a contraband cell phone I met “Mongoose Matt” by calling a random tattoo shop. Haha! It was awesome. Fineline Tattoo NYC is Matt’s workplace and it took all but 60 seconds to make one of the best friends I’ve ever had. It makes me so proud to say that. Shortly after getting pinched for contraband Matt has been there through all my solitary confinement, sending in anarchist literature, commissary bread for hygiene and art supplies, and in 7 years now on a 15 year sentence for a so called “murder” it’s his solidarity and support that saved my life and sanity.

Dirty Darrington had officers from the McConnell unit come hit us for shakedown and those creeps took all my property and left me with nothing. This was my breaking point. I just felt like giving up, but Mongoose comes flying in with letters and powerful words of encouragement and because of him I am fighting today. They tried to break me intentionally. I know this for a fact. Only problem is I survived. TDCJs “Cease to speak or cease to breathe” motto doesn’t scare me. I have nothing to lose. Now, I’m asking for you to stand with me until we punch a hole in this darkness and make it bleed light. Sean Swain is the other reason I fight. How you doin Sean?

Here’s the deal – folks out there, my only weapon at the moment is this here pen. I want surrounding activists to contact me so we can get started. This is still far from over and I believe that it’s only through the voice of the people that we can bring this down on a statewide level. I could use all the support available in my fight against the state. Things are slowly changing for me, so I will be allowed more visitors on Dirty Darrington Unit. Soon I will be allowed to call out. In the meantime, anyone can write me. There is so much to learn and prepare. No doubt that without your direct support places like Dirty Darrington and surrounding plantations will continue to thrive, rubbing it in the community’s face.

The Texecution state is also a slavery state. Shut em down. Nobody is gaining a thing. It’s a slap in the face when the officials of the state come here to lie to everyone that they are doing everything they can to change these laws so that we actually become productive. The only laws passed are laws to make it harder on us to get home to our families. For the oppressed indigent offenders who cannot afford hygiene products, organizing a hygiene run to bring forth relief, peace of mind, and a sense of compassionate care. I’ve seen exactly how good this place could be, but as long as we have ringmasters like these hypocrite wardens, coward-ass majors and captains, vindictive supervisors who love to use cowardly acts and body slam people while in restraints such as Sergeant Akinsonu, Sergeant Williams, Sergeant Estrada, Sergeant Baker, who writes her own rules when it comes to keeping people down. All these cowards and a few more on my shit list need to be burned at the stake for their inhumane treatment of human beings. We need to give them a little perspective. We need to all come at them via phone calls, media, advocacy centers, anyone that can hit them where it hurts, to show them that we are not alone. We are not going to accept this kind of abuse and pretend it’s normal. It’s policy. Policy is made up as they walk to the pisser. It’s a shame the population is in love with their ringmaster.

As a survivor of these gulags, food is still the #1 tool used to break solitary confinement offenders. Many months I went hungry and many months I eat the unwanted veggies inmates discarded just to survive. Sometimes portions were almost a smear of meat on tray. We need to end this today.

TFSR: What inspires you these days? What brings you joy?

CZ: Oh that’s easy – Defiance from Detritus Books is my inspiration. I’ve gotten very close to Comrade Mongoose and against the peace and dignity of the Texecution State I’m in constant contact with Comrade King and Comrade Swain. I wish them the best in the struggle and hope to see them soon, for I am coming up for parole soon. It’s a crap shoot, but optimism is helpful in situations such as this. I get my jollies by sending Matt handcrafted portraits of all kinds of cool, weird characters. Y’all are actually owners of one of my pieces. Thank you.

TFSR: Is there anything I failed to ask you about that you want to talk about?

CZ: You all can check out my Instagram @julioazunigaart or contact Matt to place an order for a handmade portrait. I only have No.2 pencils to work with because this unit will not allow my supporters to send me art supplies. Anything that makes people happy like greeting cards and pictures are slowly being taken from us as well. Go figure. This is Bible seminary college too. This is the unit that pumps out “field ministers”. Unbelievable, huh? Bass-akwards, I tell ya! I gotta let ya go for now. It’s been an amazing and liberating experience. You all are amazing. Please allow me to send hugs to Sean Swain, Eric King and to all the comrades who are in the trenches fighting their ringmaster. Thank you for setting the example. I hope to be in that position soon. Thanks y’all. Hope to hear from you soon. I would like to close with a quote from Benjamin Tucker:

“Power feeds on its spoils and dies when its victims refuse to be despoiled. They can’t persuade it to death; they can’t vote it to death; they can’t shoot it to death; but they can always starve it to death.”

If you would like to contact Alex, please send a letter to:

Julio A. Zuniga #1961551
Darrington Unit
59 Darrington Road
Rosharon, Texas 77583

Call To Solidarity For Texas Prisoners – by Comrade Z

Am I ready to stop taunting and playing with my oppressor’s feeling? No! I’m not, but people are now calling me out on my unorthodox tactics that have been effective, so effective Huntsville is now shaking in their boots. Don’t believe me? Alright Texas, I encourage you to call my unit and ask. They’d be so happy to report that one anarchist abolitionist has managed to expose every single piece of shit officer to the media and to their own people. It’s still ongoing, just as is the discrimination in the mailroom, because I am a member of the Industrial Workers of the World-Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee. Only now, I’ve got to act; time has called for abolition. Yes, it is true. State reps and city council members are standing for reform, but are you really willing to risk being dealt another brand of lies? Texas prisoners are the reason Texas Dept. of Minimal Justice is still clinging to life. Slaves in love with the Texas Slave Tradition are the reason we are stuck on Stupid! Instead of aiming for true liberation and control of our own fates, you placed your trust in your oppressor.

This is Comrade Z, reppin’ Texas IWOC. Shout out to all my organizers on Dirty Darrington. Sup wassup, E-Line! Alright, news flash: those men who remember the events of December 18th, 2020 – 3 Row, 12 cell, E-Line, Intelligence Officers sent to my cell to inform me that I was being discriminated against by disciplinary case. Just know, and pay attention who is still here and who’s not. That’s right, I’m going to retaliate on every officer that writes a bullshit case. Wardens involved, I got something for you. Try me! Anyway, to my organizers, the Prison Show is going to be utilized by our Fellow Workers in the very near future, so begin listening in for Ms. Linda’s shoutouts.

Comrades, stay vigilant. Educate yourselves, reach out to our facilitators, request Abolition Libraries Press through Joergen at PrisonsKill so you can have literature sent to you, and request “contact support”, which is available now. Ask to be put on the list.

I have been very effective in showing Huntsville their bullshit ways. After complaining about Sgt. Estrada and his co-conspirators, Huntsville set off a campaign of their own. They began to speed up convictions of pending K2, cellphone, etc. cases, including my own phone case, for which I plead out to 2 years. However, I am showing you how quickly and how easily “virtual visitation” was magically produced for the capitalist agenda.

Me and hundreds of others all across the State of Texas got a visit with county judges and attorneys. Yet, here we are struggling and suffering without visitations. Pay attention comrades, TDCJ is using tactics, not policy. If they tell you phone calls are only allowed every 90 days, so fuck phone calls. Demand virtual visitation. We are not trying to ask you for a 5 minute bullshit call. Demand your right to visitation. TDCJ is trying to figure out how to make money off of your families visiting you. Don’t let it go down. Stop fuckin’ working. Stop and regain leverage. You are the only reason TDCJ is still breathing, and no one is benefiting except your oppressor and their families. Again, stop working. Stop!!

Open your eyes and realize that we need to end TDCJ. As you can see, the reaction to reform has them committing crimes against one man, me, to silence the proletariat. They are trying to starve me, to break me. Pay attention to TDCJ tactics and realize that they are very aware that you have more power than they are comfortable with. Use it to your advantage. True liberation means ending TDCJ and allowing the people to regain control. TDCJ is a for-profit agency, supports Chinese suppliers, supports immigrant worker programs, and only sells TDCJ/TCI products, forcing us to purchase items that are made by child labor and prison slave labor. Pay attention to what this agency is doing and you’ll know why you must end it all. Stop working. Stop working.

If you want true liberation, end TDCJ now. Let me show you what you are missing out on. Stop working and send the facilitators letters constantly so we can send our message to prisons all across the state, including women’s prisons, who are very important to me. I am asking Dirty Darrington to realize truths that are painful, but true nonetheless. This is that moment. You workers are the only thing stopping the movement. You can see they don’t care about shit but making money off of you. Stop working and watch how much power you immediately have. Stop working. It’s over. TDCJ is dead.

Let these capitalists feel loss, heartache. Let their capitalist agenda become obsolete in the blink of an eye. Brothers, solidarity is the only word you need to preach amongst each other. No more free labor, unconditionally. This means, know that your oppressor doesn’t care about you. They have no love for you. Don’t do more for TDCJ than it’s willing to do for you. Change is here. Stop working and let Texas IWOCs on E-Line, B-Line or in population advice us to bring in media campaigns to spread our resistance for true liberation from the bullshit Texas Dept. of Minimal Justice! Let me show you. Just stop working, all of you. We got this.


Comrade Z

The Truth Unfolds Before Comrade Z’s Eyes

Poor, wretched and stupid peoples, nations determined on your own misfortunes, and blind to your own good! You let yourselves be deprived before your own eyes of the best part of your revenues; your fields are plundered, your homes robbed, your family heirlooms taken away. You live in such a way that you cannot claim a single thing as your own; and it would seem that you consider yourselves lucky to be loaned your property, your families, and your very lives. All this havoc, this misfortune, this ruin, descends upon you not from alien foes, but from the one enemy whom you yourselves render as powerful as he is, for whom you go bravely to war, for whose “greatness” you do not refuse to offer your own bodies unto death. He who thus domineers over you has only two eyes, two hands, only one body, no more than is possessed by the lest man among the infinite numbers dwelling in your cities; he has indeed nothing more than the power that you confer upon him to destroy you.”

-Derrick Jensen

from ‘Welcome to the Machine’

Brazoria County is speeding up its processing of convicting inmates after reporting mailroom corruption in Texas prisons. This too is the way criminal justice makes up for losing city contracts for prison slavery.

Friday, January 22, 2021

Today, I signed a 2 year plea agreement, but I was not using the law library to speak to my state issued attorney. This is unprecedented. I asked the escort officer, “Why are we in the captain’s office?” Zoom court is going on in the law library. Ding! My mind immediately said, “Oh shit, Huntsville is trying to collect money from all the slaves they formally entrapped with their contraband!” This agency is completely gone into hillbilly racist cartel mode, y’all. I reported one unit’s dirty drug ring and contraband entrapment ring in mailroom and all 6 surrounding units go into conviction mode, with Brazoria County, the same people I reported the statewide corruption to.

These people wasted no time. They told “OIG” in Huntsville and decided to cash in right now, get as much out of court fees that they charge inmates, and taxpayer dollars to pay for warden’s mistresses or beaus. Ugh! It is Texas, after all. However, I am forced to getting into the political spectrum, forced to get dirty, to fight off the parasites that is TDCJ-CID and minions. Jeez, whats next? Demand the impossible is what the fuck is next. Interview with Comrade Z, pt. 2 on The Final Straw Radio, comrade Bursts at the wheel, and don’t miss it! Love live anarchy!

I will be coming to you through our very own attempt at video posting, in celebration of the shiny new, and to raise up our anarchists across the globe and in Texas, with #PrisonsKill.

Dirty Darrington administration has federally fucked up and intentionally discriminated on me for being a member of IWW-IWOC and creating the Texas Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee. To all Wobblies reading this – don’t leave my men behind. All of Dirty Darrington’s men need solidarity and guidance. I am under political attack by the entire Texas Dept. of Minimal Justice, yet am still fighting back. Fuck TDCJ.

I am nowhere near done with exposing the entire racist regime of Brazoria County corruption. All you need to do is call and ask, out of 6 prisons convicting prisoners for officer and warden introduced contraband, does it make TDCJ feel better about losing city contracts for exploiting and slaving men? Prison slavery is a crime. Torture is a crime. Assaulting inmates for no reason in handcuffs is a crime. Stealing mail from inmates, even if you are Bruce “Dirty Deeds” Armstrong (Warden of Dirty Darrington Slave Plantation Konsentrationslager), it is a federal crime. You’ve done it 4 times to the same person. Can someone say discrimination? I’ve written this man up for First Amendment Rights violations in August. It’s on record. Sending people to hijack mail in the mailroom is a crime, but it’s become evident that when I went to report this to Brazoria County Sheriff Dept they didn’t investigate. They already knew, so they warned Huntsville that their corruption ring is being reported.

All of this is verifiable by calling Brazoria County Sheriff Dept. who I sent a transcript of my badass interview with Bursts O’Goodness, so if they try to lie, and they will, ask them if they’ve heard of Comrade Z! This is actively happening as I write and you read. Opportunity is knocking at your doors. Change is on the other side. Get your demands met today. Write to city council members and state reps. Get your families involved. While you do that TDCJ is actively trying to create a new money making scheme to maximize the value of the slaves who are helping them stay alive. These men are outta there! Now, here is where I am at: parole reform, pay wages, ending texecution, all over due. This is why I am glad prisons are dying. Don’t forget people. Go to your nearest courthouse and protest mass incarceration.

Listen, the people of Texas are wasting tax payers’ money on a corrupt agency. TDCJ is that agency. They do not excel in anything that resembles humanitarian criminal justice. Instead, we are forced to drink brown recycled water, with 100 year old pipes busting every 5 minutes. That event dislodges chunks of rust that make your teeth bleed. This is how racist Dirty Darrington is: There are segregated chicken coops! If I’m lying, I ain’t worth 6 inches of bullshit! You’ve got half the chickens “shiny and white”. They lay good eggs that don’t taste like ammonia. Then you got the “brown, dirty” chickens that produce eggs like a motherfucker, but are abused, murdered, tortured, neglected, in cramped, dusty, disgusting living conditions. Sounds just like our unit, no difference. See for yourself. How much does it cost to go to Google Maps? See if you see the prison, and all the wasted amounts of land that could be producing solar energy an a brand new vocational training facility for the new age. No! Instead, you’ve got a cluster fuck of political parasites, roaching off the scraps the political heathens leave for the officers.

Come on Texas, help me out here. I’m not asking for much. Give the men tangible parole reform, end prison slavery. Pay wages for all. End texecution. We don’ need more prisons. We need to end poverty and begin decriminalizing drug abuse. We need to create a criminal justice that is organic, humane and that is aimed at ending mass incarceration for being black or brown, which is the majority of people in Texas. Stop playing your high society card and actually listen to the people.

I’ve got nothing, so I’ve got nothing to lose, and I don’t seek but what is owed to me, for my slavecatchers’ First Amendment Rights violations, theft of mail, legal mail, media mail, discrimination for being a member of the IWW and for exposing officer contraband scheme in the mailrooms of every unit in Texas. Don’t fear change. Don’t fear TDCJ or MSPC. They are at their weakest and, the next 4 years, I will make sure they pay for every cruel and unusual punishment they impose on you.

Jean Jacques Rousseau’s “Social Contract” declares that governance is by consent, not by mandate. He wrote, “Man is born free; and everywhere he is in chains.” He also wrote, “The brain may become paralyzed and the individual still live. A man may remain an imbecile and live.” We see both of these around us each day. He wrote further, as we also see each day, “Slaves lose everything in their chains, even the desire of escaping them. If then there are slaves by nature, it is because there have been slaves against nature. Force made the first slaves, and their cowardice perpetuated the condition”.

If you are with me. All you do is stop working, indefinitely. Don’t lift a finger until parole reform is set in stone. I bet they won’t outlast our vigilance. I guarantee it. Stop working. Let them earn their pay. Listen y’all, we’ve got support out there. Get your people to contact my people at Industrial Workers of the World. Any branch will help you. Mongoose Distro and #PrisonsKill will keep you informed. Fuck “The Echo”. Go to your friends and family to send you the real news about TDCJ.

This is Comrade Z, staff writer, anarchist, abolitionist, IWW-IWOC member, wishing you outrage and illumination.

Solidarity and Sabotage,


KKKorruption in KKKonsentrationslager: Darrington Blows Their Cover – by Comrade Z

from Comrade Z

Mongoose Distro Staff Writer

IWOC Member x386969

Fuck my… life!!! Goddamn TDCJ is like a scorned woman. I have single handedly penetrated the minds of every sorry motherfucker in TDCJ-CID. Yessir! Peep this y’all: Due to high volume amounts of mailroom retaliation and discrimination on my being an anarchist/abolitionist with Industrial Workers of the World Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee, Officer Garcia, Estrada, Williams and Reyes did the dirty deed of opening media mail. Ms. Ford, mailroom clerk and supervisor, was allowing it, amongst other things. Naughty, naughty! However, on 12/18/20, they sent me a denial of an outgoing media mail packet addressed to ABC affiliate The Final Straw Radio. Now I’ve been retaliated on like this since October, then for successfully agitating with my outside facilitators. Asst. Warden Angela Chevalier set me up with Lt. Lott and Captain Cooper and ad.seg’d me for reporting to the public 13+ suicides under Warden Powers, Warden Armstrong, Major Pharr, Captain Cooper and Lt. Lott’s watch.

In September 2020 two suicides occurred back-to-back. After this, I began organizing and got another bullshit case for that. Now, mind you – they punch. I punch back. After receiving this bullshit case, I went to court. All I asked was for Captain Cooper not to touch my commissary, being that there’s a pandemic and all. No phone calls, no visits, poor feeding in ad.seg areas, you know? No dice! I get bammed! Right on! Now check this: I said mailroom was doing regular fuck shit, but what caught me off guard is why is Intelligence surveilling me? Hmmm. Oh yeah, because I got sick of the Warden’s corruption scheme that is taking down inmates for shit officers are setting them up with. These tactics mirror what happened on Ramsey One, with Powers and Captain Gilbert, who is now a Sgt. On Darrington. I sent a transcript of my interview with The Final Straw Radio from 4/23/20 to the Brazoria County Sheriff’s Narcotics Dept. to report mailroom entrapment scheme by Sgt. Estrada, Williams, Garcia and Reyes. The motherfucking Sheriffs did not call Darrington. No, instead, it spooked the shit out of them by contacting Huntsville. So Huntsville is running a statewide corruption scheme and are scrambling right now to hide their fucking crimes. Whoops! Did I do that? I am being blocked access to courts. I can’t mail my boards out.

Officers Obaseki, Sandoval, Reyes and Penny raided my cell on 1/11/21 at 3:20-3:40pm. On camera, Ms. Ford comes to drop off legal mail that I sent to State Counsel for Offenders attorney Charles Martin. She made a spectacle of opening my mail on camera, showing every single article, which included two emails, two #PrisonsKill essays, one WPO First Amendment Rights disclaimer and a Fire Ant Collective disclaimer. Seconds after receiving the letter, that was photo copied in Huntsville by attorneys for the State, the shakedown team comes to tell me that Warden Armstrong wants the letter because I am an anarchist. Penny’s big mouth said it loud and proud. Did I mention that First Amendment Rights disclaimer was in that envelope? The very next day, I get an attorney phone call. It was perfect timing. I proceeded to report all the illegal activity by this administration by order of “01” Bruce “Dirty Deeds” Armstrong.

The mailrooms across Texas are violating your First Amendment Rights, and Wardens are allowing their Intelligence Officers to set you up by allowing their own traceable contraband, that is a federal crime, to knowingly and intentionally introduce K2, meth, and SIM cards through the mail so they can set you up. More than likely it’s coming from the evidence rooms at Sheriff’s offices near your unit. Do you see those cameras on the walls? That’s not an eye because you see it. It’s an eye because it sees you!

TDCJ is running a statewide mailroom corruption scheme to continue receiving your families tax payer money to keep you in prison. Stay tuned to (Texas Anarchist news). Please contact your family and sue the fuck out of your oppressors. Fuck TDCJ. By no means does this mean the fight is over.


c/o Francisca Lopez


PO Box 35263

Albuquerque, NM 87176

Tell them Comrade Z sent you.

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Support anarchist prisoners!

An interview with anarchist political-prisoner Eric King with the Seattle-Tacoma chapter of Black and Pink (from

In this time when authorities refuse to keep people safe from COVID-19, when rebellion is a fresh on our minds, and when the abolition of police and prisons is becoming a clear necessity to more and more people, we’ve got something to learn from an anarchist political prisoner like Eric King. Eric vandalized the office of a government official in Kansas City, MO, in solidarity with the Ferguson uprising, was arrested in September 2014, and then was sentenced to ten years for the window he broke in June 2016. Such a sentence is horrible, but not shocking. Prisons, after all, do more to keep hierarchies safe than people.

Big update on Eric–> he has been placed on mail restriction yet again- for 6 months.
Eric needs your help as he deals with this, recovering from COVID-19 and a trial in April.

— Support_Eric_King (@SupportEricKing) January 17, 2021

Eric is now facing a bogus charge of assaulting an officer that could land him another 20 years inside. At the time of writing this, he has been hit with a mail restriction and can’t receive letters of support. But we can make ourselves aware of his case and learn from his words.

The following is an interview with Eric conducted through snail mail by the Seattle-Tacoma chapter of Black and Pink, a queer/trans abolitionist group that focuses on building community across prison walls.

Black and Pink Seattle-Tacoma: How would you characterize FCI-Englewood’s response to COVID-19?

Eric King: Dreadful! At least in the SHU. People were brought in without being tested, staff was never tested. Our tiers were not cleaned more than once a week, we were only given 3 showers a week. No bleach was used anywhere. We were given masks, but staff/admin was so slack with their usage. Now we have a massive outbreak. The entire SHU was ill and staff refused to acknowledge or test us, until on Thanksgiving when things were so bad a med officer had no choice but to test 3 of us… all positive. A few days later they test everyone else, ALL positives. Then, AFTER we all are very sick, they institute a SHU lockdown, they start bleaching the showers between use, etc. Warden Greilick failed. None of us have been given anything for it, not even info about symptoms and how to make it less. Greilick failed, 600+ cases, all preventable.

B&P: What’s something about being in prison that you feel like people outside don’t understand, and need to know? Were there expectations you had about prison that shifted once you were incarcerated?

EK: I’m not sure people realize or care about the amount of psych games these people play. It is violent. Withholding mail for weeks or months claiming you don’t have any, searching your cell and vandalizing your family photos. Placing you intentionally around people who wish to harm you. I’ve seen cops lie and tell a group a certain person is a rat just to get that person fucked up. Happens all the time and isn’t limited just to unit cops. Medical will see you on your death bed and say you just need more water. People die because of this gaslighting. You file your grievances as you’re supposed to and get told they never got filed, that YOU are lying. It’s a miracle there aren’t staff murders every day. Instead people internalize this bullshit and give up, or turn anger on fellow convicts instead of toward the system baring down on them. It’s an effective spirit breaker. I honestly thought in prison it’d be “us vs. them” … it isn’t… it’s us vs. us while they laugh and manipulate us. Devastating.

B&P: What do you notice about how different populations in the prison are treated? How has your position affected your treatment?

EK: Different groups get treated different for sure, usually to stir resentment and violence. Gay and transgender people get treated abysmally by all races/gangs AND staff. They are demonized and treated as less than scum, often left vulnerable to attack or staff harassment.

My position as an anti-racist / anti-fascist person has been used to create divisions and separation. At USP-McCreary while in the SHU, staff mocked my “Antifa” face tattoo and assured me they were going to get me jumped… and they did. Mail is ALWAYS horribly delayed and often arbitrarily rejected, email has to be read and approved before being sent out – which can take days. I’ve been denied phone calls for 2 years after a website posted about me and my wife was denied visiting access due to her “ideology.” Staff talks big shit trying to instigate violence, subject you to a large amount of searches and property confiscation… you get targeted.

B&P: What sustains you while you’re inside? What support are you getting that is really making you feel supported?

EK: The support that feels the “most,” is when people/groups do things outside of me, on their own. Things like banner drops, fundraising, getting writings or info published to various sources. Being kept relevant and alive. In the near future it will be trial support: either showing up, posting about it, encouraging others to come, things like that. I have an amazing family who is outlandishly loving and supportive, I am very present in their lives. I have great friends and supporters who look out for me super tough. These things sustain me. Also, I am very secure in myself. My ethics and my belief in myself, in my future. These things carry me throughout the day. They won’t beat me.

B&P: What is the relationship between your incarceration and your political education? How has the experience of being incarcerated changed how you think about the world?

EK: Prison has reaffirmed all my anarchist beliefs and helped teach me further about what oppression really is. Prison has shown me, just like Congress or insurance companies have shown me, that governments do not give a shit about marginalized people, that our come-up will be through solidarity and unity. I lived in a bubble, knowing racism, homo/transphobia existed and needed to be fought, but surrounding myself with like-minded people, having the privilege to encounter these things on my terms, at rallies or fights. Prison has introduced me to new levels of hate, bigotry and violence. It has taught me the fear I face in prison for being different politically, is similar to what folks feel like in their homes or communities and this is devastating.

B&P: What did your life look like day-to-day before COVID? What does it look like now?

EK: My life pre-COVID and post-COVID are not vastly different. I am in the SHU pending trial for “assaulting an officer,” I’ve been in this pre-trial SHU 16 months. COVID has caused burdens for all of us. They cut visits, including legal… so although I’ve got trial in 4 months, I’ve yet to meet my new legal team, although we are allowed a couple 15 minute legal calls per month… smh. They also decided to cut our food portions by a third, which is logical and definitely not the stupidest shit imaginable. For breakfast, bagged food. For lunch and dinner, styrofoam trays. It’s a farce. People back here with phone access decided to finally follow policy, so I’ve been getting my monthly one call, that’s been amazing.


— colorado peoples press (@colpeoplespress) January 1, 2021

The people in charge of the prisons are bad people, it’s important folks know this. They are pieces of shit who need to be publicly outed as enemies of the people. J.E. Krueger – Regional Director wouldn’t let tests be taken to keep numbers low. Put him (and his office) on blast! Now-retired Warden Greilick and his lackey Ms. Thomas ensured pre-trial prisoners have no access to their lawyers. Our “rights” are toilet paper to these bastards.

B&P: How important has it been to have people writing you while you are in prison?

EK: Letter writing is beautiful for a plethora of reasons, including showing the prison that we aren’t invisible, we are loved and supported. It also helps us to stay human, having real friendships in the world. That said, for prison support groups, or abolitionists, letter writing should never be the end-all. We need real support. We need phone-call ins, we need fundraisers for legal support or just so we can write you back or call our families. We need people to get our words out there, to spread awareness, we need books or magazines, we need people to look in on our families, to protest for us, to act in solidarity, to dox our torturers, to write about us, to keep us alive and vibrant out there. Support is support. Letter writing as a means to show kindness or build friendship on an individual basis is a beautiful thing, though; it’s a way to maintain reality and a sense of who we are as people, instead of “King 27090045.”

Much love to the FireAnt Collective, Rob, Nadiya, M. Kimble, J. Rose, S. Swan, Thomas, and all anarchist and revolutionaries inside. Comrades, we are together. Fight 2 win. Thank you 2 all those who fight 4 us: Certain Days, all the ABC and ABCFs, B&P, all those fighting for us.

Eric has new lawyers from the Civil Liberties Defense Center and you can support his legal defense efforts by donating at Please earmark your donation on the website”Eric King legal defense.”