Thursday, July 21, 2005

Learning behind the bars

My attorney said before I came: You will be back in court in 6 months. I told them this. And all of them laughed. Saying yeah. That´s what I was told. I´ve been here 3 years so far. Same with the others.

The next thing you need to know. Is learn to depend on yourself. After time, here - family and friends will forget who you are. Or most will. I was never very close to much of my family. My brothers and sisters all left home at early ages. Then I did also. So, we really were not around each other much. So, that part would not surprise me !

However - I had 2 good friends and a girlfriend and what the guys said came true pretty fast. Less than 2 years. Both friends and my girl friend were gone. The guys explained that to me. We on Death Row become lost causes to them. And they have lives and move on. It makes sense in a way. Yet still it hurts to see them go.

The next thing they taught me was: don´t believe half of what your attorney says. An attorney will tell you things just to placate you. Get you to go along with ever they do.

Learn about law. Keep an eye on them. These attorney have several cases. they can and will spend only as much time on your case as they have to.

Learn law, research your own case.

Of course I was not able to do that then. I had completed only the 6th. Grade in school outside. I knew zero about law. Or anything else really. But, I did start to educate myself. I borrowed books from the Prison School Teacher. Started to read everything I could get my hands on. And some of the guys helped me. I watched public T.V. They have mostly educational programming.
Science - Nature - History - Documentaries.

And my eyes slowly opened to the world. I took the G.E.D. test in 1981 passed - got my High School Diploma. But that still did not teach me law.

And at Florida State Prison - a law library was a joke. So, I was still law - ignorant.
So, I had to rely on the attorneys. Which in later years I realized was just what the guys told me. They really messed my case up. But back to the first days.


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