Texas Department of Criminal Justice official site:
Karen, with all due respect, your cmeomnt is absurd. I don’t know if you have any idea how celiac disease effects someone who suffers with it, but your worst toothache couldn’t even begin to compare to the misery someone who has celiac would endure if they were fed foods containing gluten day after day after day. And starvation is not an acceptable choice either. Newspapers, magazines, books, television, recreational time outdoors, visitation rights these are all extras that we allow prisoners. Food is not an extra, it is a necessity of life. Even the most brutal, murderous criminal is deserving of some minimal level of human dignity. You want to lock him in his cell for 24 hours a day with no human contact be my guest. However, subjecting him to a life sentence of physical illness because the prison can’t be bothered accomodating food allergies is beyond cruel and unusual punishment. And, not to mention, there are plenty of people in prison who DO NOT belong there, but nevertheless are there because of draconian laws, overzealous prosecutors, or a host of other factors. Let me put it another way in a hypothetical: Suppose you’re driving down the highway one day, minding your own business, obeying the traffic laws, a car pulls in front of you, and you get into a bad accident and the driver of the other car is killed. Was that your choice? Did you choose to take a life that afternoon? I think not. Yet, if you were charged with manslaughter and sent to prison, you would be there nontheless. You may feel bad about what you did, as anyone would, but you didn’t intend to take another life. Wouldn’t you at least want to be treated with some level of human dignity and respect during your stay in prison, whether it’s for a week, a month, a year, five years, or so on? I think so
I am amazed at this. There was also a reenct prisoner who died because he had Addison’s Disease (another auto-immune disease that sometimes travels with celiac) and he was refused his medication. The idea that a criminal should think before they commit the crime that they will be forced to starve or be very sick while incarcerated seems a little near-sighted to me. I expect to receive appropriate medical/psychiatric care if I am incarcerated, and that includes recognition of my diagnosis as celiac, Hashimoto’s and Addison’s. The prisoner may very well have been experiencing the panic and anxiety that can come from eating gluten and having long-term vitamin deficient conditions.
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