In Prison, We Helped Fight Wildfires. Upon Release, We Were Handed Over to ICE

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    • #444510
      eridani
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      • Total Posts: 10,290

      .https://truthout.org/articles/in-prison-we-helped-fight-wildfires-upon-release-we-were-handed-over-to-ice/

      Like many others in prison, our entire lives were changed by a mistake we made as youth. Pham was just 20 when a verbal argument turned into a physical altercation. Feeling scared and outnumbered, Pham drew his gun and shot in the direction of a group, hitting one person. Everyone thankfully survived, but Pham pled to assault and was sentenced to 15 years in prison.

      In prison, Pham confronted the harm he did to his community and decided to make amends. He took anger management classes, joined support groups and completed his college degree. In 2018, Pham saw news of the devastating wildfires in Paradise, California, and decided to volunteer as a firefighter to protect the people of his home state. After months of rigorous training, he became a star firefighter at Folsom State Prison Fire Department, responding to countless life-threatening emergencies in and out of prison.

      On June 16, 2021, Pham became eligible for parole. After his years of hard work, transformation and healing, he should have been able to return home to his family. But instead, upon his release, California’s state prison system directly transferred him into ICE custody.

      In 2020, we were in exactly Pham’s position. We had both turned our lives around in prison and served on the front lines of wildfire season, risking our lives for California communities. Because of our refugee status and California’s collaboration with ICE, we were also immediately detained after paroling. Our own transformation and contributions to defending California were overlooked.

      Jesus: Hey, Dad? God: Yes, Son? Jesus: Western civilization followed me home. Can I keep it? God: Certainly not! And put it down this minute--you don't know where it's been! Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction

    • #444529
      retired liberal
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      • Total Posts: 4,363

      Laws for us, but not for alphabet government agencies.

      We are an arrogant species, believing our fantasy based "facts" are better than the other person's fake facts.
      The older we get, the less "Life in Prison" is a deterrent.
      Always wear a proper mask when out and about. The life you save could be both yours and mine.
      Don't forget that the S in IoT stands for Security.

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