Tag Archives: United States Federal Bureau of Prisons

Life After Release -10

After Prison Experience

On one of my adventures in downtown Atlanta, after my release from serving a 420-month federal prison sentence, I captured the photo of this beautiful bus while walking around the city snapping photos using a smart phone. Only Dumb Phones existed before my 1988 arrest and conviction. But at least you could find a phone booth to pay with coins or by calling collect on such a device, instead of having to pay a lot of money for a smartphone and phone plan.


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Since these posts are read world-wide, I am certain that those in different countries without all of the available technology used in America may wonder how a phone booth looked. Though this photo is of a much older phone booth seen in 1988, this photo does show what would now be a dumb phone, if one could be found somewhere, when compared to a smart phone that I can use the camera of to walk around town taking photos.

Moving on to a different theme, when I first began writing this blog my intent was to post this brief message to refer readers to my page on Quora.com, where I may also earn a commission for those who use my link to sign up for Quora+

Anyways, for a quick blog post with a punch, I am re-sharing a popular answer on Quora that continues to receive a lot of attention because it relates to the technological challenge many returning citizens face upon release. Please be sure to follow the comments in the thread. In particular, what I wrote in response to a comment to help the returning citizen protect himself from scammers:

“Along the lines of security, adding two-factor authentication to an important account is best; especially, if you can use an Authenticator App, such as the one offered by Google or Microsoft. SMS messaging is better than not using any additional measure of security, but that may also be compromised. A lot of SPAM calls may leed to that becoming a security threat.

“Using a credit card versus a debit card is also best, since using the credit card does not require adding your pin number.

“For additional security, in the Manage Account settings on credit or debit cards, add a notification for any transactions done for the lowest amount available so that you will be notified of any transactions posted, and if not you, you can turn off the card immediately and change all associated passwords.” WTD

Thank you!

https://www.quora.com/profile/Wayne-T-Dowdy/The-success-of-this-answer-continues-to-amaze-me-Not-surprisingly-though-in-regard-to-the-fact-that-millions-of-men-a?ch=18&oid=98147589&share=5b51b5c4&srid=x5UbO&target_type=post

Shane Bradley Shares

Shane, who is a returning citizen like me who wants to make a positive contribution to society, provides a link at the end of this post from his Space on Quora.com that may be of interest to anyone who has served time in prison or who has a loved one or friend who has been on the Inside.

Click his name to find him on Quroa: Shane Bradley.

WHY I CREATED THE SPACE, “THE PRISON AND JAIL FORUM – DECADES.” PLEASE READ BEFORE CHECKING OUT THE ANSWERS ON THE SPACE OR IN MY PROFILE!

First, I want to thank all those that have supported the space with their posts, views, and commentary.

I created the space with the goal to gain credibility to launch much loftier goals I have of preventing juvenile delinquents from making the decisions I made and ending up in prison. Incarceration and recidivism rates are way too high in our country. The devastating consequences affect everybody that live here in the United States. The majority of the people in our country that are in prison will be going home someday. I believe that the way our current criminal justice system is set up that the goal of rehabilitation is not being realized. I would like to think if I asked anybody that lived here in the United States if they want a person that is in prison or jail to come out of prison or jail a better person than they were when they went in that their answer would be yes. That is my goal here. That, and preventing them from being in prison in jail in the first place.

The reason that’s DECADES is in the title of the space is because I only solicit contributors that have at least 10 or more years experience in the criminal justice system. I made this decision because I want the answers on the space to be as accurate as possible and come from real experience. You’ll see some posts are from people that do not have 10 or more years in the system because I allow anybody to request to post something, and after reviewing it, I post it if it is appropriate. I solicit contributors that are not only male and female ex-convicts but also police officers, parole officers, correctional officers, probation officers, defense attorneys, prosecutors, judges, human rights advocates/activates,family of incarcerated, and even sex offenders; in the hope the space will not be biased. I encourage those that meet these prerequisites to apply to be a contributor. I also encourage anybody that would like to collaborate with me, with the goal of preventing juvenile delinquents from ending up in prison, to message me.

Also, far too many people are in prison that are innocent in the first place. You can see evidence of this through the fact that more than 300 people have been exonerated and found to be innocent of the crimes that a jury had found them guilty of, due to the development of DNA technology. That is more than 300 people that the sperm or blood, that was found in heinous rape and murder cases, was found not to be the perpetrator’s blood. Imagine all the people on death row right now that don’t have DNA in their case to prove their innocence, many of which will be executed by our government. The average law abiding citizen believes in our criminal justice system; that it is fair and just, that we don’t put innocent people in prison here in the United States. It isn’t until you have a real encounter with the system that you come to realize that it is broken. The jury pool is pulled from voters. Voters believe in the system or they wouldn’t vote. When the accused sits at the defense table, it is only natural for the person serving on the jury to form an opinion, before any anything is ever said, by their appearance. A large percentage of those jurors are automatically biased because they believe in the system and believe policeman wouldn’t arrest someone for nothing, so there’s already a presumption of guilt even though the accused is supposed to be assumed innocent until proven guilty. Public defenders don’t have adequate resources to protect their clients from injustice due to the high cost. The focus is on plea bargaining when the focus should be on coming to the truth. Prosecutors will fight to keep someone in prison even after they have been shown to be innocent from DNA evidence, contrary to their oath office they swore to uphold.

I watched a 2020 special one time where they took mock jurors and held jury trials. They used the same witnesses, asked the same questions, the same prosecutors, the same defense attorneys, with the only different factor being the person sitting at the defense table. A clean cut individual was often found not guilty, whereas someone who did not have the quintessential look of an innocent person was found guilty. I also watched another 20/20 special where they would have someone, with the stores permission, go into to a store, snatch something and run out the door. Then they would show mugshots to the people in the store that were shopping at the time. People would pick photos in the mugshot lineups and say that that was the person they saw snatch the item that was snatched and it wasn’t even the person. This is literally within 20 minutes of seeing the person that snatched the item. Many of these people said they were certain it was the person when it was not. This also shows how eye witness testimony, which is often taken as fact by jurors is flawed. I hope if you’re reading this, and you serve on a jury, that you will remember this blog and it will lead you to have an unbiased opinion of the accused and will prevent innocent people from going to prison.

I think of all the tens of thousands of juveniles in the system today. I believe if someone just took an interest, an actual sincere one on one interest, in each and every one of them, that a significant percentage of them will never make the choices that will ultimately land them in prison one day.

Incarcerating people has a high social and financial cost to our society and is devastating. Our inner cities are being destroyed. Children are growing up without their fathers. People are leaving prison angry, lost, and worse off than when they went in. Many don’t realize that it is not the prisoner alone that is serving the prison sentence but also their children, their parents, and other loved ones that count each and every day with them, suffering , to the day of their release only to be disappointed to find many of them broken and damaged, instead of rehabilitated. Many, myself included, as well as correctional officers, and others that work in the prison, suffer from PTSD due to the violence. Upon release from prison I thought I was going insane until I found out that everybody that did a lengthy period of time like me suffered from the same symptoms and that it was a normal result and consequence of the environment I lived in. There’s actually a mental health label for it called Post Incarceration Syndrome (PICS). PICS, not only affects the person that is suffering from it but all those in society that that person comes into contact with due to the behavior they exhibit is a direct result.

Post Incarceration Syndrome (PICS)Post Incarceration Syndrome (PICS) Post Incarceration Syndrome (PICS) is a disorder that affects many currently incarcerated and recently released prisoners and is caused by being subjected to prolonged incarceration in environments of punishment with few opportunities for education, job training, or rehabilitation. While all incarcerated people are at risk of this disorder, the symptoms are…https://barnoneidaho.org/resources/post-incarceration-syndrome/?amp=1

I’m happy to announce that in just three short weeks of the creation of the space there are more than a half of million views and 232 folllowers. Again, thank you all for your support!

Christmas 2022 by Wayne T. Dowdy

Christmas 2022

Nothing Changed But the Date. The good news is that Covid-19 isn’t devasting life as bad this year as it was last year. I hope each of you are warm and safe.

For those who have followed me for years, please pardon my repeat of this blog from last year with a few modifications. Most everything remains the same, with COVID-19 still creating controversies and disrupting our lives.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all who celebrate the holidays!

Ice and snow settle across parts of the United States as Santa moves in to deliver gifts and toys to all of the good little boys and girls.

Naughty girls and boys get gifts, too, because Santa doesn’t want to be sued for discrimination and lose his reindeers and sled in court.

For me, I haven’t felt the Christmas spirit this year, even when it began to look a lot like Christmas before this day arrived, with Santa packing weapons to defend himself against those who wish to take his goodies. (See photos of Santa’s Anti-Terrorist Sled in linked blog posts.)

Gratitude

What I do feel is gratitude for my health, family and friends, and for having an opportunity to walk the streets or to get in my car to drive wherever I wish, or to go to the refrigerator to get anything I want to eat, at whatever time I chose.

My life changed a lot since I paid my publisher in 2015 to create this blog/website so that I could get my voice outside of the walls and rows of barbwire that held my body but couldn’t dampen my desire to succeed upon release. Today I write as a free man.

For my freedom, I fought many battles against demons and dragons and slayed them all, one at a time, until victory opened the doors on August 28, 2018.

I held my head up as I walked away, with no desire to ever return.


Years later, I sit at a computer writing blogs that I often send in to a select few inside the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons. My hope is to encourage and inspire others to change their life to become better men and to have a more fulfilling life, and so that if the day comes to walk out the doors, that they, too, will be able to live a life that does not include crime or behaviors that will put them back into prison or the graveyard.

Uh, oh, I hear Santa cruising the neighborhood so I need to get in bed and act like I am asleep so that he will stop and leave my presents because I have been really good this year. 🙂

Check out these two older blog posts and you will see Santa’s High-Performance and Heavily Armed sled that will get him put in prison for life if the Feds catch up with him.

Santa, Stars, Sex and Politics

Plot to Stop Santa

Bureau of Prisons and Private Prisons

Photo by Ron Lach on Pexels.com

Great news! This morning I read this article and was happy to see that private prison doors for federal prisoners were closing. BOP finalizes moving inmates from private prisons. My hope is that the BOP will improve and provide each of those inmates an opportunity to prepare themselves for successful reentry into society. Most private prisons were not recognized for providing such programming to prisoners, according to what I had read and heard from others. Please read the following links posted below for more on the subject and for some of my previous content. Thanks!

https://www.bop.gov/resources/news/20221201_ends_use_of_privately_owned_prisons.jsp

When I first read the above article this morning, I posted a brief article on Quora, which went to my accidental page that I created early on in my writing career for Quora. To stray from the topic for this blog, the page on Quora that I link below was “accidental” because when I first posted content to respond to answers, I did not realize that I was doing so on a different page than the one I had intentionally created under my profile: https://www.quora.com/profile/Wayne-T-Dowdy.

I was fresh out of prison and wasn’t up on all the technology after having been inside for over thirty years and having never even used a cellphone or been online without depending on someone else to post blogs for me.

Wayne Dowdy-2 on Quora, BOP finalizes moving inmates from private prisons.

Promotion: Subscribe to Quora+ for answers to questions for any topic. Please use my referral code so that I may earn a small commission. Quora+

Here’s a free subscription code to my Space on Quora where you may read a variety of answers to questions myself and other contributors have answered. Act soon before it expires in one week from the date of this blog, I think: Life Inside and Out.

The blogs I am linking below were ones that I wrote relating to the effects of going to prison and returning citizens, based upon my personal experience. However, because of my security level and history frowned upon by prison administrators (read Essays & More Straight from the Pen for more on that statement), I was too big of a security risk to be placed in a private prison). Though I may not be considered an expert by some, I do have firsthand experience in the field. I do appreciate you reading my blogs on this website or listening to my podcasts on Spotify.

Turkey Day 2022 by Wayne T. Dowdy


Happy Thanksgiving Day to those who celebrate the American holiday! And even to those who don’t celebrate holidays, I hope each of you are filled with gratitude for all you have in life to be thankful for: start with the functioning body parts and the air you breath to see another day.

Turkey Day USA! For me, I celebrate each day because of the life I’ve been blessed with living, which is less than what I want, but is much better than what I had when I posed for that picture inside the Georgia State Prison in Reidsville, Georgia in the 80’s.

Healthwise, I was in much better physical condition back then than I am now, of course, but in regards to what really counts, today I am in better overall condition.

The positive aspect from that experience and others I was fortunate to have survived, is that I did walk out the prison doors and lived to fight another day. And decades later, continue to have a life worth writing about, which I do often in hope of inspiring others or to otherwise affect a positive change.

The most success in my writing career has become writing on Quora.com where I have over 1.2 million views on my profile page and Life Inside and Out. Should you decide to subscribe or to check out a free subscription, I am paid a small commission. Visit my profile to learn more: Wayne T. Dowdy or click Here to subscribe to Quora Plus.

Should I focus on writing about the negative, I could write for days and still fail to tell everything that I dealt with throughout the years. A wonderful thing is that I could also write for days about the good things that I have experienced and feel fortunate to still be able to sit before my computer screen and type.

Finding the bright side of life can be a challenge if filled with self-pity because life is not happening the way I feel it should. But when I stop for a moment to remember where I came from, and then accept that things are working the way that the God of my understanding wants it to be, then I can breathe in a be grateful for the moment, knowing that I am blessed to have been around for all these years and to have accomplished the things that I have during the last few years.

My plan for the next few months is to focus on changing several things that I have the power to change in pursuit of accomplishing more than I have since my release from the United States Federal Bureau of Prisons on August 28, 2018. Then maybe next Turkey Day I will write about some spectacular events; however, I am probably going to stop paying for this website and end it for several reasons I may write about in an upcoming post as Revising A Life or Life After Release.

In reflection of 2022, I am grateful for many things, including being given the opportunity to appear on a public television station, which you may watch the YouTube version of by clicking the link in Revising a Life-10 for a Steadfast Journey-Bridging the Gap, with the lovely, Dr. Micshell Milsap, or by clicking the following links where I appeared in Wisdom Episode 10 and another Walking With God. Please check them out and click to like and subscribe to her channel. Thanks!

May your heart be filled with more gratitude this year than most, even though the World affairs have deteriorated. If you pray, remember Ukraine and those who suffer around the world.