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  • Rob Will

Reason One Of Ten To Support Steven Woods: Because He Makes Great Fire Dragons

The SWAT team assaulted G with a riot control CSV gas grenade earlier—this is what I woke up to—my mind is a bit shaken, but I need it to write so I am. (The aftereffects of CS gas make one feel lethargic and a bit dazed.) Steve is set to die in only 22 days. Go to his website right now, and learn more about his situation and get involved. There are many reasons to support Steven Woods, but here’s one most people aren’t aware of: because he makes formidable Fire Dragons.

Flashback to 2003: We were on F-pod disciplinary status, super-seg isolation, the dungeon (where I’m at right now actually) engaged in a protest campaign. They had us locked down due to direct-action demonstrations. Two particularly sadistic officers came on the pod at night shift to begin terrorizing—they were threatening to not feed people and taunting others telling them they weren’t going to get a shower that night.

The shape of this building is a long rectangle with a main hallway in the center with all of the offices of medical, the mailroom, ranking officers, etc. There are 6 pods, three on each side, and people in the hallway offices are completely isolated from what goes on on the pods throughout most of the day. Ranking officers generally only come on the pods when an incident occurs.

There are different levels of complicity when it comes to staff members engaging in acts of oppression. For example, if a sadistic Lieutenant is on a rampage he might tell the C.O.s not to shower people and this will be a situation of complicity amongst the Lieutenant, Sergeants, and C.O.s. However, at other times, like this incident I am describing now—“jacking” showers can be instigated by C.O.s only. If an incident (protest demonstration) occurs because of the C.O.s jacking showers and/or trays and ranking officers have to come, they’re going to want to know what initiated the incident. If higher-ranking staff members feel the C.O.s have created a major incident for an unjustified reason this can reflect badly upon the C.O.s. (Yes, yes, of course by TDCJ policy and by law staff members are never supposed to break policy and engage in acts of treachery and sadism but they do every day.) Sometimes it’s necessary to create an incident so rank will get out of the office and come on the pod.

Lighting fires to make the smoke alarms in the hallway go off is one way to do this. So, these two sadistic officers came on second shift and immediately began threatening to not feed people and marking people off on the shower sheet. Several people lit fires but because so many of the fire alarm’s sensors are so screwed up down here on Texas Death Row dungeon pod the alarms didn’t go off. Damn. The sadistic C.O.s thought this was quite hilarious and went to Huh-huh-huhing on down the run. And thus arose the Great Fire Dragon…

Steve hollered at me and another guy and suggested we make long cylindrical cones of newspaper and push them out closer to the fire alarms. Good idea. After working with it for a little while, we ended up shredding paper fully encased in rounded out newspaper. Picture this: the lights are out and the C.O.s are sitting in the control picket back-slapping and hee-hawin’. The spark is lit and we’re hoping they won’t notice it and rush to put the fire out before the whole thing catches. The C.O.s’ fat bellies are just a-jiggling about with laughter and contentment. Tee-hee, ha-hah, backslapingslap.

Suddenly the Great Fire Dragon burst into flames and the C.O.s freeze with looks of stunned disbelief on their faces—a thick 15 ft. long flame beast is raging and snaking across the two row run and dipping its blazing head off the side into one row. “Shit!” exclaim the C.O.s in perfect unison and they leap up from their comfortable chairs and rush to the scene with the fire extinguisher. Phsschwheeehhhhhh!! They unleash the contents of the extinguisher until it utters its last few weak coughs—but it’s no match for the Great Fire Dragon. “Fuck!” shout the C.O.s as they hear the fire alarm go off and see the Dragon’s flames raging on…

We knew a very no-nonsense Lieutenant was working and he came storming on the pod enraged because his coffee (and flirtation with female C.O.s) was interrupted. Long story short: The Great Fire Dragon triumphed and Steven Woods helped with this creation and victory. Just one reason to support him. A bit of a light-hearted story, but the situation is indeed extremely serious. It takes an awesome strength of will to engage in acts of resistance in this Orwellian Hell. Steve has done this for years, and now he’s set to die in 22 short days. Go to the website and offer your support. Remember, inaction in the face of injustice is direct consent.

From the Polunsky Death Camp

In the East Texas Piney Woods

With Strength & Love:

Rob Will

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