This is the first article that I have ever written.
Hello, my name is Alex E. Taylor. I am an inmate at San Quentin State Prison in Northern California.
The COVID-19 pandemic and racial injustice have affected my way of life. I am housed in a part of San Quentin that has not been affected by COVID-19. I have not seen many of my friends, who are also inmates, since the last week of March because this place has been put on a modified program. This has been a hard blow for me also having to deal with seeing so many minorities mistreated on television. It has hurt my heart and soul. I have a term to serve of five years at 80 percent, which means I should get out in 2022. I wish I could get out today and march with my brothers and sisters in the Black Lives Matter cause as well as protest for LGBTQ rights.
The pandemic has been a real eye-opener. It has made me cherish the two hours of yard we get here in San Quentin. I think we, as a nation, needed to have these protests. The police in many states have treated people of color wrong. Cruel and senseless acts of brutality. I have been referred to as a nigger by the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Department officers many times. It is deeply hurtful and traumatizing. I can sum up the crazy six month as an eye-opener for the soul and I hope this nation can move on to find a cure for both COVID-19 and racism.
Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.