Kevin Rashid Johnson experienced a frightening medical crisis beginning on May 14th, we just got word of it a few days ago. He had crippling pain behind his left eye, blurred vision, and very high blood pressure. This case of severe hypertension if untreated could cause life threatening medical episodes.
Today Rashid told us: “Medical neglect is a serious problem here. I personally have witnessed two inmates die from neglect. On the night of May 14th, Nurses Doak and Armstrong referred me to see a doctor on May 15th. I have never seen a doctor.”
During this health emergency Rashid was denied a scheduled legal visit. On May 19th Noelle Hanrahan P.I. and mitigation specialist Cynthia Skow were scheduled to fly to Texas and their visit was prevented by the Clements Unit and the ignominiously named Texas Office of Access to Counsel. Rashid’s legal team will reschedule this trip ASAP, and is fighting this illegal and inappropriate action by the TDCJ.
The State of Virginia (he is being held in Texas on an intrastate compact transfer) has tried tactic after tactic to isolate and prevent Rashid from communicating. They transferred Rashid out of state in 2012. He has had only two phone calls while in Texas for the past year, and four visits in the 2yrs since his transfer from Virginia. In Texas he can only purchase 40 stamps per month, if he is broke, he gets ten stamps as an indigent prisoner.
Turn the white hot spotlight on the Clements Solitary Confinement punishment Unit at the TDCJ.
We are standing with Rashid.
1) Please Call and Tell the Warden at the TDCJ Clements unit that that health care is a human right. Demand that Rashid see a doctor. TDCJ Clements 9601 Spur 591, Amarillo, TX 79107-9606 806-381-7080
2) Call and write a personal note to the Ombudsman P.O. Box 99, Huntsville, TX 77342-0099. TDCJ Health Services Division Office of Profesional Standards 936-437-4271 | Fax 936-437-4930 | firstname.lastname@example.org
3) Call and write the Inspector General Office 512-671-2490. 11101 Metric Blvd. Building I, Austin, Texas 78758.
4) Write Rashid today. Send your Rashid Postcard — if you don’t have a stack of them for your friends order them from us, ask us to send you a dozen by snail mail. Use them to have your friends write Rashid.
Let him know that he is not alone!
Kevin Johnson #1859887
9601 Spur 591
Amarillo, TX 79107
5) Put money on Rashid’s inmate trust account. (here is how)
Kevin Rashid Johnson’s art is featured in the Syracuse Cultural Workers Peace Calendar and this image graces the month of May.
“Who is Kevin Rashid Johnson”
by Jennifer Black
Kevin Rashid” Johnson is a remarkable artist, accomplished writer, and politicized theoretician. Please listen to his work, read his articles, and view his inspiring art.
Rashid Johnson went to jail as a young adult in 1990, and has spent the last 24 years living in jail and prison cells, mostly relegated to isolation in solitary confinement, buffeted by the system, enduring forced relocations, harassment, brutality and living conditions so squalid they qualify as human rights abuses.
A mobilizer, Rashid has spent his years in prison agitating against draconian conditions and organizing his fellow prisoners to unify for the purpose of holding prison officials accountable to the standards of the law. Like so many prisoners before him, writing from “the belly of the beast,” Rashid contributes to the proud tradition of radical prison thought. He has not shirked from exposing gross prison injustice and abuse of power, even though in doing so he has made himself a target of brutality. Guards have repeatedly beaten him (in one instance dislocating a shoulder), denied legal proceedings, forced him to endure long stretches of isolation, deprived him of meals, purposely prevented access to mail and other personal items, forced him to witness brutal spectacles of violence, and denied him medical care.
His response? To continue his work: What they fail to grasp is that we march to the tempo of a different drum than the one they beat…‘The People’s Beat,’ A beat that never stops! Because it is the very rhythm of life, love, community, and in times of struggle reaches a staccato pitch threaten livens the masses to rise up and shatter the forces that bind them.”
Despite his isolation he manages to donate art and articles to Prison Radio and to the New Afrikan Black Panther Party, building bridges where previously only walls existed.
We urge you to read his words, look at his art, and listen to his recording because in doing so you are raising his profile and this helps protect him from the most violent forms of retribution.