Letters from our incarcerated readers

Re: “Stop First Amendment rights violations in Pennsylvania prisons!” Vol. 66, No. 8, February 22, 2024, by Joe Piette

Workers World,

Just getting around to responding to your article. Bryant Arroyo (“B”) is my comrade. We worked together on litigation he filed against SCI-Frackville for the same type of retaliatory transfer to SCI-Coal Township for his involvement in First Amendment protected activity.

Why did they place B in solitary confinement? For introducing that prisoner to Workers World’s paper; for explaining his struggles as they relate to disability rights; for filing multiple grievances over willful violations of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA); then for publishing that prisoner’s disability struggles and how the prison staff blatantly violated his rights. All this is protected under both Article I of the Pennsylvania Constitution and the First Amendment, as is WW’s right to print, as is prisoners’ right to read it.

B is a jailhouse lawyer and writer for WW who was retaliated against. He was placed in solitary confinement for “colluding with prisoner Rinick to get an article from WW newspaper introduced into the facility.” That was the pretext to retaliate against B.

The prisoner B was trying to help also reached out to WW [for] aid and assistance, because prison staff at SCI Coal Township did not employ him on jobs he and other disabled prisoners are capable of doing. He was also placed in solitary confinement.

WW has been publishing articles about prisoners’ human rights being violated and prisoners being subjected to cruel and barbaric treatment for decades. Prisoners don’t have to collude with each other to have a WW article on prisoner mistreatment introduced into any prison! We tell one another, “If an establishment newspaper ignores your valid concerns, contact Workers World. WW will investigate it and print it.”

B was then transferred to another prison hundreds of miles out of his region for encouraging prisoners to tell their horror stories to WW and informing prisoners, who are paid slave wages, to write WW to get a free subscription. That’s how we keep abreast of what’s occurring politically, socially and judicially, along with what’s taking place relative to prisons and prisoners.

Free speech may in fact serve its highest purpose when it induces a condition of unrest or when it creates dissatisfaction with conditions as they are, even if what’s printed stirs people into anger and frustration.

Read Mumia’s book, “Jailhouse Layers,” which discussed my work in being a prisoners’ rights advocate and jailhouse lawyer who for decades has filed litigation against prison abuse, horror and cruelty,

George “Rahssan” Brooks

SCI Coal Township



Re: “Finally! DA admits hiding evidence in Melissa Lucio’s case,” Vol. 66, No. 17, April 25, 2024, by Gloria Rubac

I really enjoyed the Melissa Lucio piece you wrote in Workers World. Actually, your article was the best one I’ve read thus far. Normally, articles written in support of someone usually have something written also that undermines the reasons to support someone in the first place. Another thing about your article that I liked was its tone. What I mean by this is: Reading the article, I felt YOUR support of Melissa, not just you giving a reason to support her, or a basic update of the good news that has come down about her. Thank you! Take care. In Solidarity!

Tony Egbuna Ford

Texas Death Row

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