Move over Betsy Ross...
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) thinks female prisoners sewing American flags should be the new iconic image for America's Independence Day.
On July 4th, the CDCR posted a photograph of a female prisoner sewing an American Flag on its Facebook page with the following greeting:
"Happy Independence Day from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation!"
Some numnut in the CDCR apparently borrowed the photograph from a San Francisco Chronicle article published earlier this year — "California women's prisons trying to save programs" — and posted it as their jolly Fourth of July greeting.
Women in prison — slave labor! — as icons of American freedom?
Makes sense to me!
War is Peace... Slavery is Freedom... And all that Orwellian rot. Muahahaha!
CDCR prisoners generally make between 38 cents to one dollar per hour — assuming they get paid at all. If it's a training program, they might not earn any money and the Chronicle article does not make it clear if the young woman in the photograph — in the "flag-making factory" — is a worker, or a student?
As of this writing, the CDCR's tasteless post has had 901 "shares" with a number of... interesting comments:
"I'm SHOCKED that an ILWU page would endorse convict labor. Unfriended!" — Matt Meister
"Look at PRISONS FOR PROFIT!" — Bonnie Flournoy
"And the US slaves who are NOT locked up in cages wonder why they have no jobs..." — Stephen Donovan
"Someone is losing their job tomorrow for sure. Quick, take screenshots before this is removed." — Clayton Slade
"I would rather have our prisoners make our counrties flags than having them made by another country (China)." — Lisa Westphall
"@ lisa westphall: Yeah, I agree. It's much better that someone with little to no actual rights is making flags rather than someone with little to no actual... Wait a minute..." — CJ Finn
"Look up the prison industrial complex. Look up privatized prisons. Look at who invests in them. Look up school to prison pipeline. Wake up!" — Dara Rae McCuistion
According to Hoovers, the CDCR houses 172,600 adult and juvenile prisoners and supervises another 125,000 parolees while employing 42,000 people... That's 7 prisoners/parolees per every 1 CDCR employee (just in case you didn't have your calculator handy).
Hey. If our public schools had a 7:1 student/teacher ratio, maybe they wouldn't be cranking out functional illiterates who end up in prison?! (Just a thought.)
And, with a $10 billion budget, CDCR certainly could afford to hire more teachers than slave-labor supervisors, dontcha think?
Because, right about now, America needs to be number one at something other than her American-flag-making prison population.
CDCR'S Contact Info:
California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
1515 S. Street
Sacramento, CA 95811