BY GILBERT PALIOTTA
After almost 20 years of being in maximum, I’ve come to notice the types of individuals that choose to work in places like this. It’s the unmotivated, lazy types. It’s the failed at other career choices type. It’s the malicious deviants who have been victims at some point in their lives and working in prisons is how they can get their payback on any inmate in the way of violence or assaults, denying them the basics of life necessities, or just outright killing us.
It’s the undercover sexual predators who wield their authority to get what they want sexually under the threat of disciplinary action. It’s the former military type who either got dishonorably discharged or dropped and seeks to find that sense of ”brotherhood“ with other pretend/part-time ”soldiers,” wannabe ”cops.” It’s the desperate type. It’s the type that would be labeled as outcast in a society not involved in corrections.
It’s the type of person you know would spit in your food if they knew you were not going to leave a tip or complained about the service. It’s the type who would leave a threatening text or email but would run and hide if they found themselves on the same street as you. It’s the stealing your dirty laundry smelling on your boxers/panties types. It’s the types who would keep another person’s mail instead of return it types.
They are the same types of individuals that the free society dislikes in us convicts.
Related Story: NPR explores why many prisons across the country are struggling to fill open Corrections Officers positions.
Why would you want to strip-search a person of the same sex in such a degrading manner, why would a person want to visually inspect my balls and penis, just so I can go outside to an enclosed area all by myself? Why would a person want to hold onto my sweaty shorts with his bare hands after I’ve just worked out in them for the last 90 minutes? Why would a person want to repeat this hundreds of times in the 9 or so hours of being on duty? What type of person voluntarily does this kind of work?
Why would a person put two known enemies on the same rec-yard, knowing the inevitable outcome? Why would a person create a situation of violence just so they could shoot the persons involved, sometimes resulting in kill shots? Why would a person take bets on these created, orchestrated events? Why would a person set up another person to be assaulted or murdered?
Why would a person stomp through a persons cell, tearing through their personal belongings and destroying property under the guise of a “shakedown”? Why would a person intentionally poke an “animal” with that proverbial stick knowing that they are disrespecting the little property they own, stuff they hold dear and would kill over? Why would a person visually molest another person’s personal photographs?
Why would a person denying another person of bar soap or roll of toilet paper? Why would a person piss all over a mattress and give it to someone to sleep on? Why would a person serve food once covered in rat or mouse feces to another person? Why would a person order an entire medical department to refuse medical treatment to a suspect or prolong their arrival to a unit when a “man down” has been called?
Why would a person want to hold another person hostage in a maximum security prison when their custody level is not maximum worthy or they have earned their way out of max security? Why would a person want another person to be subjected to the violence and politically charged environment when that person’s conduct demonstrates they’re not fit for that type of placement? Why would a person want to force a thief to become a stone cold killer?
Why would a person intentionally push someone else down a flight of stairs while that person is in handcuffs and leg restraints? Why would a person shoot someone in the back of the head with a shotgun while they are on the ground in a prone position? Why would ten grown men dog-pile one person and break the person’s limbs, shatter their eye socket, stomp on their groin with boots on? Why would a person handcuff someone with hands behind their back with a dog leash attached to those handcuffs and then jerk on that dog leash to dislocate that persons shoulder or force them to fall face down breaking their nose and shattering their teeth?
Why would a person voluntarily place himself in an environment that houses the criminally insane, the mentally insane, those that are chemically dependent, those that are unstable? Why would these people refuse giving treatment and proper medication to the disturbed? Why would a person intimidate, bully, take advantage of those same people who cannot defend themselves when they are in their care and custody?
What type of person would choose to work in a maximum-security prison?
Job skill-wise, it’s not that complicated. Any high school graduate or college dropout could learn to put on and remove handcuffs and leg restraints from a person’s body. You could teach that to oneself in the privacy of one’s bedroom with their significant other. Anyone can be trained to fire a weapon, use a taser, or spray a can of pepper spray at another person. Anyone can be programmed to watch the comings and goings of others, push a button to open or close this door or that gate, stand around and dish out directives as if they’re CEOs of a big company. It’s the easiest money a person could make.
Read about the famous Stanford experiment that led to shocking findings about the psychology of prison guards and power.
This line of work can’t be for the motivated and the ambitious. This isn’t the 50’s or 60’s where working in the Department of Corrections was some kind of honor and was admired like today’s firefighters and doctors. There’s no glorification in being a prison guard. It’s definitely not the type of job that’s a steppingstone to something bigger and better.
So why would anyone want to be a prison guard? It’s because they are without the skills to perform in any other line of profession. It’s because they have no motivation other than to divulge themselves in other people’s misery, momentarily escaping from their own. It’s because they find pleasure in perversion, of seeking out ways to satisfy their own sickness and sexual fantasies. It’s because they no longer belong to something bigger than themselves or have ties to a unit with honor, loyalty and a true sense of duty.
It’s because they would rather watch the world burn down around them than see it grow and prosper. It’s because they are easily misled and seek negative attention from other like-minded degenerates. It’s because they are blinded by a misguided anger developed in their personal lives. It’s because they don’t know another way to handle their fears. It’s because they are convinced that they are somehow safe with us locked behind a 2-inch thick steel door and we can’t get a hold of them. It’s because they lack decency.
These are they types of individuals society entrusts to run America’s prisons. Hate breeds hate. One day, month or year those inmates forced to survive in the deplorable environment labeled as Department of Corrections will be released back into society.
See you soon…
We send comments to our writers on a weekly basis but if you’d like to write this author directly, please do so at:
Gilbert J. Paliotta #46244
Ely State Prison
PO Box 1989
Ely, Nevada 89301