by The Spark
Forty-five years ago, prisoners rebelled in Attica, a New York state prison. The rebellion lasted five days until it was savagely repressed, leaving 31 prisoners and nine guards dead, all shot by the police.
There had been previous revolts in the prisons. From 1950 until Attica, there were some 50 other prison uprisings. But that didn’t prevent a prison official from declaring in 1966, they were “proud, satisfied and happy” with their system.
In fact, as events were to show, the prisons were becoming a breeding ground for revolt.
By 1970, many prisoners had begun to call themselves “revolutionaries.” The black movement and the U.S. war in Vietnam led to political radicalization for many. These attitudes had spread throughout the population, including among prisoners.
A new type of prisoner appeared: those condemned in ordinary criminal cases whose political consciousness (more…)