All Articles: Opinion

An Opinion About the 19 Women Sentenced To Life Without the Possibility of Paroling

By Jane Dorotik Today at the California Institute for Women, there are 19 women who have been sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. Their profiles, their individual sentencing factors, their time incarcerated and their in-prison behavior exemplify two specific factors: The main reason these women received this inhumane sentence is not because their […]

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Time in San Quentin Remains Frozen

For decades, time remains unchanged By Jose Camacho San Quentin’s Lower Yard gym has a three and a half square foot clock atop it. However, since 1982, it has been frozen at 5:44. Nobody knows if it stopped ticking at dawn or dusk. “The yard clock is frozen in time—not reflecting the spirit of San […]

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Dutch Social Psychologist Impressed by Prisoners

By Joost van Imhoff My time in San Quentin has evoked the following question in me: “How can it be that I, safely raised in Holland, have never felt so understood, accepted and heard as I have in a group of violent offenders?” Although the stories of drugs, violence and even murder were far from […]

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Teen Decision First Step

By Gary “Malachi” Scott The U.S. Supreme Court took a step in the right direction when it outlawed mandatory sentences of life without the possibility of parole for children below age 18. The Miller v. Alabama decision invites a look at other types of cases that would sentence juveniles to die in prison of old […]

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Prison Not the Answer for Juvenile Offenders

Editor’s Note: The following story by San Quentin News sports editor Gary Scott was published in the June 5, 2012 edition of the New York Times. Scott was arrested at age 15 for second-degree murder and was sentenced to 15 years to life at age 17. He has served 14 ½ years. He works with […]

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Men Urged to Change by ‘Being More of Who You Really Are’

By Thomas Tartar, MD “What I did is not who I am.” It’s a powerful statement for someone who has felt the pain of doing wrong. Reflecting on the disconnect between one’s values and one’s actions requires substantial courage and inner strength — qualities we all possess. When you choose to use life’s experiences as […]

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As I See It. . .

By DAVID MARSH Editor’s Note: David Marsh was a staff writer for the San Quentin News for two years until his release on parole in June 2010. He is now a reporter and columnist for the weekly Valley Voice newspaper. I guess it’s time to for me to live up to the commitment that I […]

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Making a Difference

By MICHEAL COOKE I recently visited the North Block Health Clinic, to seek medical service for a chronic health problem that has plagued me for years. I sat in the uncomfortable, but well-lit, 8’x8’ holding cage, waiting my turn to be seen by the nurse. As I waited, I began to contemplate what inspired some […]

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Unique Culture of S.Q. – Helping One Another

By COLE M. BIENEK San Quentin sits at the vanguard of CDCR’s modest rehabilitative efforts. Each month, the S.Q. News profiles any of a number of S.Q. programs. In this era of budgetary starvation, S.Q. remains steadfastly in pursuit of something larger. One of the things that make San Quentin unusual is that dozens of […]

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The Fallout From WikiLeaks Document Release

By RONALD G. SELF The United States military and allied forces face increased risk due to the disclosure of classified documents, according to the Pentagon. Last June Julian Assange, founder of the whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks, released 400,000 pages of classified documents pertaining to military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. U.S. personnel are being placed in […]

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