By Mansfield Frazier
Rest assured there are many, many dog lovers in federal prison, and since they have already lost their liberty they are free to live life by a totally different set of rules, at least in certain circumstances. Prisons, on occasion, can be brutal and deadly places, made more so by the fact there’s really only one place to hide: Protective Custody (PC), which, I’ve heard, can be lonely to the point of maddening if someone spends enough time there.
Raymone Clements is a 42-year-old living, breathing piece of shit. In fact, he would have to move up a few notches from where he’s at on the evolutionary ladder to even be considered shit.
This brute — who has previous convictions for rape, drug trafficking and ag robbery — tied a Mastiff to a tree in a park in Cleveland Heights and shot it. The dog survived and now has a good home … which is something Clements won’t have for at least 10 years.
He’s being held without bail on federal firearms charges, and the only thing that’s going to beat him to a federal penitentiary is the headlights on the bus.
Just as the First Amendment doesn’t allow anyone to cry “FIRE!” in a movie theatre, I suppose it would be wrong for me to reach out via my still vast network of prison contacts and let them know what Clements did. It really doesn’t matter which federal prison he goes to, trust me, someone I know undoubtedly knows someone there. And I can’t stop people from printing this column and sending it into a dog lover at whichever prison Clements lands at, now can I?
Of course I wouldn’t go so far as to personally ask some Bubba to make Clements his butt-boy (he’s really too old and ugly for that) but he could be made an offer he can’t refuse: Check in, PC up, get off the compound … or risk getting the cowboy shit kicked out of his ass on a fairly routine basis.
The fact is, stripped of everything else, the only thing left to men behind bars is their personal sense of dignity, and allowing bottom-feeders like Clements to walk around a prison compound unmolested after what he’s done is an offense to that sense of dignity.
I know, retribution is the province of God … but sometimes She needs a little help, and occasionally we have to be willing to oblige.
Take it from someone who used to run a continuing criminal enterprise: at times you have to be as brutal as a Mafia don to be successful long-term, and rest assured Lance Armstrong was just that … and to a degree still is. He’s still attempting to manipulate and control the trope by selectively confessing to Oprah.
To keep as many people as he had to manage quiet and in line while they all continually and flagrantly broke the law, he must have had — at least at one time — persuasive powers rivaling those of a Svengali … or a Charles Manson. Indeed, he was such a brutal control freak that, supposedly, when he had some sort of disagreement with a woman who assisted him by acting as a drug courier, he started spreading the rumor that she was a ho to force her back into line. Now player-to-player, man-to-man, that makes Armstrong among the lowest of the low … and somebody needs to give him a serious ass-whipping for pulling that stunt.
If he has an ounce of brains (and real courage, instead of the kind he manufactured for an adoring public for all these years), he would be trying to make a beeline to the closest federal penitentiary to check in.
I can guarantee you that in a nation with as many laws as we have on the books, authorities are going to find at least one — perhaps many more — that Armstrong broke with enough severity to earn him a trip (albeit, probably a short one) to a federal joint. This dude needs to cancel Christmas and start packing his kit bag right now.
If he’s really sharp he’d have his mouthpiece step to federal prosecutors and negotiate with them to find a low-level felony he can cop to, and then have him plead guilty (this is the important part) to “all known and unknown crimes.” In that way prosecutors can’t keep coming back at him every time they roll over another rock in his life and something real ugly crawls out from underneath it.
Armstrong can then check in and lay low, out of the media glare, and do his punk-assed six months at a Club Fed … knowing the when he gets out he’ll not be facing any additional criminal charges. Civil charges, or course, are another matter entirely, and expect for litigators to be lined up around the block to get a piece of his ass, if not for the money then for the publicity of being involved in his takedown. He’s going to be plucked as financially clean as a city chicken, but with all the resources he’ll still have at his disposal (probably for the remainder of his life), he’ll do just fine. You have to keep in mind that not everyone is — or still will be — mad at him. Someone will throw this dog a bone with alacrity.
While in prison he might try learning how to cry; the American public likes tears. Straight-up. As they say, once you can fake sincerity you have it made, and some fake tears from Lance would go a long, long way right now.
If he learns to wear this mask with sincerity and aplomb (which shouldn’t be all that hard for him given his obvious thespian skills), once he exits prison people will be in a much more forgiving mood since society will have extracted its pound of flesh. Additionally, since he didn’t commit a hanging offense all that can be done to satisfy the public outrage is to lock his ass up; the only quibbling is for how long.
Going to the joint and stepping off his time like a standup dude (and not sniveling and simpering about it) is the only way he might have an outside chance of salvaging at least a modicum of his former reputation. As a nation we’re suckers for stories of a fall-from-grace and a subsequent redemption … especially if they involve a former All-American white boy.
If all else fails, he can do like so many others before him and find Jesus while behind bars, and trust me, there are plenty of mushfakes in the joint that will gladly assist him in becoming born again. Hell, he probably could make millions as a televangelist upon his release.
Over the almost 20 years since I was last arrested, I’ve had to, on occasion, tell someone straight out: “If you’ve got a problem with my being formerly incarcerated, that’s your problem, you deal with it. I’ve paid my debt to society with my time behind the wall, and I’m not going to let you attempt to make me keep paying forever.” Once Armstrong pays his debt by doing some time behind bars we should be more than willing to then leave him the hell alone when he returns home. Once he’s served a prison sentence, that’s really all he can do to make amends.
Remembering Inez Killingsworth
Long before the Occupy movements sprang up around the country and subtly changed American politics via activism, Inez Killingsworth and her organization, Empowering and Strengthening Ohio’s People (ESOP), was on the frontlines challenging the country’s latter-day Robber Barons.
The in-your-face tactics she virtually pioneered — such as staging demonstrations in the lobbies of the offices of predatory lenders, and even picketing the homes of some banking officials — were loathed by some but championed by others. Nonetheless, they proved highly effective in bringing about positive changes in the home mortgage industry while saving thousands of hardworking families from foreclosure.
Her personal story — the daughter of Mississippi sharecroppers who, along with her husband owned a number of small businesses and for years worked as a school janitor — is truly inspiring and is a testament to courageous commitment and true grit. If any citizen of Cleveland ever deserved a statue dedicated to the memory of their life’s work, surely Inez Killingsworth should be so honored.
From Cool Cleveland correspondent Mansfield B. Frazier mansfieldfATgmail.com. Frazier’s From Behind The Wall: Commentary on Crime, Punishment, Race and the Underclass by a Prison Inmate is available again in hardback. Snag your copy and have it signed by the author by visiting http://www.neighborhoodsolutionsinc.com.