by Kevin ‘Rashid’ Johnson
On Aug. 27, 2021, I received my recently purchased Jpay prison tablet, which can be used to correspond with the outside, send out articles, that sort of thing. Officials here at Southern Ohio Correctional (sic!) Facility aka Lucasville prison, know the likely uses I’ll put this device to. And of course, they ain’t feeling it.
I was called from my cell that afternoon to pick up the tablet, which interestingly was in the possession of Joshua McAllister, the racist sergeant who is directly responsible for blocking me from communicating with outside folks now: He put me on phone restriction – in violation of the Ohio prison system’s COVID-19 protocol – and commissary restriction, and has been otherwise blocking my commissary purchases so I can’t buy writing supplies and harassing others around me, ordering them to not talk to me or assist me with contacting outside folks etc.
I and three others went to his “office” – which is actually a cell furnished with a couple of desks and computers – and stood outside waiting to be called in to collect our tablets. McAllister and his partner saved me for last.
When I entered, he immediately launched into one of his now typical B-movie bad-cop impersonations, assuring me, “I don’t care what your people say about me online!” If that’s so, I wondered aloud, why are you mentioning it to me. He went on in the same breath to further contradict himself: “You know what a lawsuit is don’t you? Well, if you don’t tell them to stop, that’s what’s coming!” he threatened.
I responded with the obvious question, “Didn’t you just say you didn’t care what they were saying? And by the way, you have me on phone restriction so I can’t tell them anything.” Angered, he asked, “Do you remember what I told you when you first got here?” referring to threats to set me up for violent assault and other racist and provocative remarks he’d made. “Sure I do,” I responded. “No you don’t!” he said, obviously frustrated that his scare tactics weren’t quite scaring me.
“Sure, even racists can do a kind deed from time to time.”
Ignoring his schoolyard bully antics, I asked if he called me into to his cell/office just to harass me. “Well, uh no, I called you in here to give you your tablet,” he muttered, motioning toward a table where a tablet inside a sleeve of bubble wrap was sitting.
I grabbed the tablet and removed it along with two copies of an ownership certificate, and operating instructions from the wrapping. He instructed me to sign and hand over one copy of the certificate.
There was no place designated for a signature, so I asked where I was to sign it. He replied that I shouldn’t be nervous, to just follow instructions. Smiling, I responded that I’ve lived in hell and don’t get excited, and that the best emotion he might elicit from me was humor. His temper flared again and he demanded that I sign the paper and, “Get the fuck outa my office!” “It’s a cell,” I reminded him. I signed the form, dropped the empty bubble wrap in the trash and left.
Part way to my own assigned cell, I noticed that I had been given no charger or other attachments with the tablet. I asked another prisoner nearby what was supposed to come with the tablet; he explained there should have been a charger, earbuds and a cord that connects the tablet to kiosks that transfer messages and information from and onto the tablet.
I went to the cellblock’s control booth and told the guards I needed to return to McAllister’s cell-office to receive my missing items. McAllister was at that moment on a speaker phone talking to the guards, assuring them that I received everything that came with my tablet. “Well, that’s not what these cameras in here show,” I responded as I turned to walk back to my cell making sure the unit surveillance cameras filmed everything in my hands. Just a few steps short of my cell, the guards called to me on the loudspeaker to return to the booth. When I got there, I was told McAllister had miraculously found the missing items and wanted me back in his cell-office.
When I entered, he proclaimed with a sheepish grin that he’d looked around and discovered that I’d thrown the items in the trash. “Oh, did I now? Well, wasn’t that kind of you to go digging in the trash for me,” I added. He responded, “Now that’s not something an old racist would do now, is it?” “Sure,” I said, “even racists can do a kind deed from time to time.” I collected the items, bid him good day and left.
McAllister is a textbook example of what we call a pig and why. As Huey P. Newton explained when he first coined the term, a pig is a foul traducer who always parades as the victim of an unprovoked attack. They are characters to be ridiculed and caricatured, not feared as they try to bully us to do.
They are also public officials, who, contrary to McAllister’s uninformed threat, can’t sue the public for much of anything said or published against them, unless it be uttered with what is called in law “actual malice,” which is an extremely high standard of knowing, gross dishonesty that it’s almost impossible to meet. This standard was set long ago by the Supreme Court in the landmark libel and slander case of New York Times v. Sullivan.
So not only do I know what a lawsuit is (in answer to McAllister’s question to me), but I also know law pretty well – which he obviously doesn’t. The public has a 1st Amendment right to protest and criticize government officials’ misconduct and bad performances, and it’s a violation of these rights for officials to try and suppress and intimidate their exercise of these rights.
So, y’all keep right on saying what you’re saying about Joshua McAllister and the rest of his corrupt and racist colleagues, who definitely ain’t the innocent victims of unprovoked criticisms. They need to be held accountable to the people, cuz they damn sure don’t serve or protect us! Keep the heat on ‘em!
Dare to Struggle Dare to Win!
All Power to the People!
Send our brother some love and light: Kevin “Rashid” Johnson, A787991, SOCF, P.O. Box 45699, Lucasville OH 45699.