"She Said No" - What a "Shock and Awe"
What I received from the prison mailroom was a "Notification of Disapproval Mail/Package/Publications" form. It informed me that on page 7 of Shailja Patel's Shilling Love zine it "portrays conduct which appears to be nonconsensual behavior" and on page 29 of Pablo Dosh's Shock and Awe zine, it "portrays conduct which is forceful, threatening, or violent." I have the options of returning the zines to the sender or destroy them.
The two pages in the question contain the poems "She Said No" by Shailja and "Shock and Awe" by Pablo. Shailja's poem depicts the fact: "On March 9, 2001, Christopher K. McCarthy, of Concord, New Hampshire, a US soldier stationed in South Korea, was sentenced to 6 years in jail for beating to death a Korean bar waitress who refused to have sex with him." Pablo's poem depicts the US Desert Storm War in February of 1991 and the invasion of Iraq in March of 2003. Those were facts expressed through poetry.
The lady who worked in the mailroom decided that the two pages out of the two zines are disallowed due to their content. She didn't give an explanation why or what specific words were a violation of the prison rules and regulations. What's amazing about this is that the lady actually read every page of the two zines and decided those two pages were disallowed. It's unheard of. Where did she find the time? Does it mean that she reads through every newspaper, magazine, and book that comes through her hands? I'm sure she would open any newspaper on any day and it will have articles that state the facts of nonconsensual behavior and violence. Yet, how come she allows those coming in? Or is it just because I am Eddy Zheng? Huh...
I wonder how much of their decision to disallow the zine has to do with personal feeling and political views. If any, wouldn't that be a violation of my rights? Hmmm....
Naturally, I appealed their decision through the prison inmate appeal process. After going through three different levels of appeals, the Director's Level Appeal from Sacramento denied it. The entire appeal process took six months. I received the decision this evening.
My next step is filing a writ of habeas corpus in the court to seek relief. I have to fight for every little thing in prison so prison guards or officials can't keep trampling on my rights.