I was doing my normal ‘check the mail’ thing and came across the above story and it made me think, “If dudes say they ain’t afraid of going to jail, well, maybe this is a reason why they should be.”
With the exception of any jail that allows conjugal visits, sex in jail/prison is prohibited… yet it’s clear from this article that even if a jail is in compliance with the law about this, sex is still happening… and not always voluntarily. It makes me think that just because a jail or other facility puts the rules in place to comply with the law, it doesn’t mean that there’s a whole lot they can do to prevent rapes and other sex between prisoners.
At one point, some states – including my home state – started providing condoms in all-male facilities, the thought being that since they knew they couldn’t stop them from fucking, well, they could cut down the resident epidemics of STDs within the population. A lot of people raised hell about this because while they had a good idea where STDs were concerned, it was still condoning acts that, by law, are illegal; they weren’t preventing the problem, they were providing an environment for illegal sexual acts.
I know that on one occasion, a judge was going to send me to jail for thirty days for a parking ticket I forgot to pay; I told the judge straight-up that if he did that, he would be responsible for my death or the death of anyone who tried to rape me. I’ve been raped by a guy and it’s not something I’d care to experience again. The judge blinked – I don’t think anyone ever had the nerve to say something like this to him – and gave me the chance to go across the street to the bank, get some money out, and pay the ticket. A lawyer there for someone else stopped me and said my bluff was a good one… and I replied, “Bluff? I wasn’t bluffing…”
I got arrested another time, improperly so, I might add, because I’m named after my father – the cops wanted him for something but took me downtown so they could verify my identity. They stuck me in a holding cell with another guy and after we exchanged the usual “what are you in for?” things, well, he was hosed: He was waiting for them to transport him to the prison we called “the Gander Hilton,” so named because of the Gander Hill area of the city it was located in.
And he was afraid; not because of the six month sentence he’d gotten, but because he knew that once he got there, he would be raped – again. He told me stories that made it clear that resistance was futile, that if you didn’t give it up willingly, whoever wanted it would take it and in some pretty brutal ways.
“I’ve had my jaw broken and my ribs trying to protect my asshole,” he told me, sending shivers through me.
Once I got released – and a huge apology from the police – it made me think: If I had to go to jail, do I fight (and kill) to prevent being raped…or is the best thing to do is just give it up when approached for it. I shivered again to think that either way, I might get something I don’t want to have and wound up tabling the thought – but it’s always remained in the back of my mind.
I even asked the guy in the cell with me if he thought it would be ‘healthier’ for him to just give it up; he said that, no, it wouldn’t be and because he wasn’t a punk and protecting his manhood was important to him. I understood what he said but there’s some common sense that must click into place here: If you’re faced with five guys demanding you have sex with them or get beat down, hmm, let’s see… I think my response would be, “Okay, who wants to go first?” One-on-one with someone about this? Oh, yeah, we’ll be fighting but against a possible gang rape? I’d be like Richard Pryor in one of his routines and saying, “Don’t stick it in too far!”
A lot of guys go to jail/prison and with the thought that they’re so hardcore that no one would dare try to take their shit. But, as the people running the facilities know and understand, this is a numbers game; for every guy trying to protect his ass, there are twenty guys who wouldn’t mind taking it from you… and there’s nothing the officials can do to prevent it – they can only react and punish after the fact.
Sometimes I watch the documentaries they have on TV about life in jail/prison and, admittedly, some places have gone very high-tech, being able to monitor inmates everywhere in their facility. Yet, according to the documentaries, sex in jail/prison still happens; one program followed two gay inmates, one who was, in his own words, a predator – he was looking to have sex with other men while the other guy was always a victim and was in fear of his life. They tried to put a straight inmate in the cell with him… and the straight inmate lost his mind and to the point where the guards had to take him down hard and carry him away.
The gay guy who was afraid remained in the cell by himself.
You see shit like this, fellas, and if this isn’t an incentive to keep yourself out of the pokey, I don’t know what is…