Author Topic: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation  (Read 706 times)

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Offline Antigen

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Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« on: April 17, 2010, 09:59:12 PM »
Quote from: "Fark"
Served your time time in prison? Good for you. Don't believe in God? Fark you, you're going back  
http://www.sacbee.com/2010/04/17/268528 ... t-who.html
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Offline Ursus

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Judge backs Redding atheist who balked...
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2010, 10:23:16 PM »
The Sacramento Bee
Judge backs Redding atheist who balked at religious anti-drug program
By Denny Walsh and Sam Stanton
[email protected]
Published: Saturday, Apr. 17, 2010 - 12:00 am | Page 1B
Last Modified: Saturday, Apr. 17, 2010 - 11:59 am


Barry A. Hazle Jr. served a year in prison on a drug charge. After he got out, his parole agent sent him back for being an atheist.

Now, the 41-year-old Redding computer technician has won a ruling from a Sacramento federal judge against the state and stands to collect damages for having his constitutional rights violated.

Even before U.S. District Judge Garland E. Burrell Jr. decided in his favor last week, California corrections officials had issued a new policy protecting the rights of atheist parolees.

"This has been a long and painful process for me," Hazle said in a statement through his attorney this week. "The judge's ruling can't give me back my lost freedom, but it begins to restore my faith in our judicial system."

Hazle's fight with the state over religion began Feb. 27, 2007, when he was paroled from the California Rehabilitation Center, Norco, where he did a year for drug possession.

As a condition of his release, Hazle was ordered to attend a 90-day, inpatient drug treatment program. He agreed to the program but even before his release told prison officials he wanted to be sent to a "treatment facility that did not contain religious components," federal court papers state.

Instead, he was assigned to the Empire Recovery Center in Redding, a 12-step program pioneered by Alcoholics Anonymous and featuring a strong religious overtone, utilizing references to God and "a higher power."

When Hazle asked to be moved to a program that was not faith-based, he was told wrongly, as it turned out there was none in Northern California.

His parole agent, Mitch Crofoot, instructed him that "he should continue to participate in the Empire program or he would be returned to prison," court papers state.

Hazle kept attending but also persisted in objecting to the arrangement, presenting Crofoot with a written appeal on April 3, 2007.

Three days later, according to court papers, Empire workers told the parole agent that Hazle had "been disruptive, though in a congenial way."

That same day Crofoot called Hazle out of an Empire treatment class, arrested him on a parole violation for not participating in the very program he was attending, and booked him into the Shasta County jail.

Soon thereafter Hazle was returned to prison, where he spent more than three months.

In September 2008, he sued officials with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Six weeks later, the department issued a directive noting that parole agents "cannot compel a parolee" to take part in religious-themed programs if the parolee objects on religious grounds.

Instead, such parolees should be referred to nonreligious programs, the department said, citing an opinion issued Sept. 7, 2007, by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

But in court, the state argued that Hazle's return to prison was because of his behavior.

In his 14-page order, Burrell pointed out the undisputed facts about Hazle's behavior.

Crofoot's own understanding, court papers show, was that Hazle "was not being loud; he wasn't throwing things around; he wasn't stomping around; he wasn't being boisterous and that sort of thing. He was sort of passive aggressive."

Burrell concluded the state's argument "rings hollow."

Instead, the judge found that Hazle's forced participation in the program ran "afoul of the prohibition against the state's favoring religion in general over non-religion" and violated the rights guaranteed him by the Constitution.

"This is a textbook test of religious freedom," said legal scholar and Princeton University Provost Christopher Eisgruber. "It couldn't be much plainer."

"It's really about forcing someone to take part in religion in order to stay out of jail, and there's really not a whole lot of disagreement at that level," added Eisgruber, co-author of a 2007 book, "Religious Freedom and the Constitution."

"It's well established that forced religion is not acceptable," concurred Michael Bien, a San Francisco attorney who advocates for prisoners' and parolees' constitutional rights. "Religion is not the only way to address substance abuse problems."

Corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton said the department respects "the personal and spiritual beliefs of parolees and we act in accordance with all federal and state laws.

"But, since this matter is still in litigation the department can't comment any further," she added.

Monetary damages are to be determined, either by settlement or trial. A jury trial is scheduled to begin June 22.

"Barry Hazle took a stand that he shouldn't be forced to take part in a religious program that conflicted with his beliefs and he was sent to prison for doing so," his attorney, John Heller, said this week. "Judge Burrell's ruling is an important step in setting things straight, and I look forward to obtaining the relief that Barry deserves for this violation."


Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.
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Offline Ursus

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2010, 01:07:05 PM »
From the above link:
Quote
Popular Comment

"This sounds like a just decision by the courts. It seems the parole agent, Mr Crofoot, was overzealous and disrespectful of Mr Hazle's stated disregard for religion; perhaps he was personally offended by challenges to his personal view and abused his authority? I hope the state is no longer employing Mr Crofoot as a Parole Officer. Congrats to Mr Hazle, I hope he's doing well."

-- DrRosenRosen
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
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Offline justonemore

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2010, 12:43:44 PM »
Sorry, but "disruptive, but in a congenial way!"!  Sounds like a sane man to me.... jes' sayin'      I'm gonna laugh all day about that one. J.O.M.
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Offline Anne Bonney

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2010, 02:07:51 PM »
The comments on Fark are worth the read.

http://www.fark.com/cgi/comments.pl?IDL ... 6235&cpp=1


Abstruse: But it's not religious because it's just a higher power, not necessarily God. Please forget about the fact that every meeting is opened with the Lord's Prayer and that the books contain bible verses...it's completely non-religious!

Some guy stands at a podium and opens with a prayer. They then drone on and on about how they were saved from their wretched and sinful ways and their trials staying on the righteous path. They pass a collection plate for tax-free donations.

So, did I just describe a church service/prayer meeting or an AA meeting? Bill W and Bob S are the new Joseph Smith.



DigitalCoffee        2010-04-17 06:54:05 PM    
ME: So, you're a good Christian, huh?
AW: Yup.
ME: And you go to this 12 step program?
AW: Yup.
ME: And you pray to a higher power, but it's not God?
AW: Yup.
Me: ....
Me: I bet God's really pissed at you for that.


yukichigai        2010-04-17 06:54:57 PM    
dahmers love zombie: He should have sued over being placed in a drug treatment program that doesn't work (new window).

/yeah, I know...works for some people, saved some people, blah blah blah.
//you should use what works for you, not be ordered into something that worked for someone else
///know what I'm talking about


Yeah, that would have been the large basis for my objection were in hypothetically in that situation. The thing of it is, I think that the reason why it doesn't work for so many people is because of the "higher power" element, specifically the part where you are helpless without said higher power. What the hell kind of farked up shiat is that? Most of these people probably already have low self esteem, so you're going to make it even lower by telling them they can't even control their own behavior without outside influence?

Yeah, fark that. You want a system that works? Teach people that they aren't worthless pieces of crap. Hell, right there you'll probably get half the problem drinkers to stop with no additional effort, since their main reason for drinking is because they feel like crap about themselves in the first place. The rest... now that you now you aren't a piece of crap, start acting like it. Yeah, it's gonna be hard. Yeah, it's gonna suck. Yeah, you will feel like hell. But you know what: you can goddamn do it, because you're not worthless.

I'm glad this has been affirmed in the 9th District, which covers where I love. I don't EVER drink and drive, but if by some fluke I wind up getting sent to alcohol counseling it's nice to know I will be able to select a meeting that isn't a thinly veiled religious circle-jerk.



radioman_        2010-04-17 07:48:19 PM    
Some of the US District Courts of Appeal have declared forced attendance at 12 Step programs to be a violation of the Establishment clause. Some of the states tried to bring their lost cases to the Supreme Court, which declined to hear them, effectively ending forced AA attendance. I guess the shaitheads who run Calleyfornya didn't get the news.

Those who will tell you AA is spiritual and not religious are misleading you. AA is steeped in Christian language and lore. Just because a specific religion is not named does not make AA spiritual. At its heart AA in these United States is Christian in nature.

There is a phrase that runs throughout AAs self-published literature: God as we understand Him. Most AAers think this line refers to their own individual beliefs - that it gives them the right call a doorknob a Higher Power. It doesn't. The amorphous Higher Power of which Steppers speak is a fraud used to lure the newcomer and beguile the public.

A careful study of AA literature reveals that God as we understand Him is an affirmation of a collective belief in a God that helps alcoholics. This God is repeatedly described in the writings of Bill Wilson and Bod Smith, the co-founders of AA. It is the Biblical God; to deny this is to admit one's own inability to understand the printed word.

So any and all rulings that mandatory AA attendance violates the rights of citizens are correct and just.



Sir Simon Milligan        2010-04-17 07:50:01 PM    
i work at a rehab thats not officially faith based, but we use a lot of AA and NA material that is pretty borderline. most of my fellow coworkers are ex-addicts who drive home the AA spirituality aspect, and they say "higher power" to be vague and not be labeled religious but its with a wink and a nudge.

as an atheist nothing is more excruciatingly painful than listening to an addict explain why there HAS to be a god because nothing else could account for them getting sober. but i just smile and nod.


joeyromeo        2010-04-17 07:51:14 PM    
When I was in AA, my "higher power" was always "the knowledge I don't require a fictitious construct to get my life back on track." It got some looks but their bylaws made me feel safe from confrontation.

Anyway, I ended up victorious because I got a handle on my drinking all on my own, having left AA after three meetings. It was simply a matter of deciding which would do my life and self-esteem better: seven nights a week drinking coffee in a church basement talking about how I'm "hopelessly weak"... or reading, writing, and studying by lamplight with a slowly-nursed gin & tonic by my side.

/cool story alkie
//oh, and the Bloody Mary episode of South Park pretty much hit the nail on the head



Confabulat  [TotalFark]       2010-04-17 07:51:44 PM    
I find the notions behind AA offensive. The idea that I have to surrender to a "higher power" in order to not drink is insulting to me.

I'd rather die in a puddle of my own drunken piss than subscribe to that bullshiat.


StrangeQ        2010-04-17 07:56:05 PM    
Fark AA. Had to go to a meeting as part of a rehabilitation program after a DUI. The entire group was a bunch of ignorant farking zombies with no self-control that do nothing but prattle on about they can't take care of themselves and they trust God will take care of everything for them.



Lenny_da_Hog  [TotalFark]       2010-04-17 08:15:08 PM    
I've lost more than one friend to AA addiction.

/STFU, I'm tired of hearing about your *@#$ing meetings, goddammit!


CliChe Guevara        2010-04-17 08:51:01 PM    
The "god thing" is, sad or not, something that most humans need to get their head on straight.

People with the right mental makeup and willpower can pull themselves out of anything. Most people, however, require believing in something greater than themselves as they just can't believe they have the strength to do anything themselves. They also often require external threat of punishment as they do not have the self-control to behave in a civil manner around others. The maintenance of a social contract is almost predicated on a certain percentage of the population believing in one god or another.

Religion is used as a crutch. That is what it is. Unfortunate but necessary.

I am a practicing minister. I am soon to become ordained into the ranks of the high priesthood. Not because I am necessarily a strong believer in our large imaginary friend, but precisely because I understand why he is necessary in the human psyche, and how he is a useful tool to encourage people to do what they were truly capable of all along.
The actual 'true believers' don't usually get to leadership positions in my, or most, church hierarchies (of functional churches, anyway) as they are usually most incapable of perspective.


TheGoldcountry        2010-04-17 09:22:54 PM    
Retinue: There are a lot of people in this thread making pronouncements about AA from just a passing experience with the program which has saved so many lives and done so for free. I have more than a 'passing experience' with AA, both personal and with family and friends. The recovering alcoholics I know SAVED THEMSELVES, some with help from AA and other sources- AA doesn't get all the credit just by being tangentially involved.

First and foremost is the "god thing". Many if not most people in the program do not ascribe to a traditional view of God or religion generally. In fact, there is as much antipathy toward religion in AA as there is on this forum. I would like to believe this is true, but every AA meeting I have ever attended began with 'this isn't about God' and then proceeded with an hour or more of talk about Jesus, ending with the Lord's Prayer.
Bill Wilson, one of the two founders of AA was, himself, a confirmed skeptic and agnostic and remained so until the day he died. Wilson, who authored the "Big Book" took a lot of flak in the early days for moving the AA message away from its Christian roots although some of this language remains albeit in a residual fashion.One, good for Bill (whom I have read, before you call me ignorant again.) Two, the language is far from residually Christian.
Carl Jung, Sigmund Freud and William James all recognized that such experiences, while rare, were effective in changing deeply set behaviors and that these experiences often, though not always, occurred within a religious or spiritual context.You just admitted that these experiences are rare, despite AA's claims that almost everyone who embraces their system will succeed. Not only that, it ignores the fact that those goals can be achieved by other methods- not something you will hear in an AA meeting. It is a silly misconception, held by the ignorant, that people in the program of AA simply try to pray themselves sober or expect God to do it all.

One, don't call me ignorant again. Two, AA make no claims that prayer and belief alone will grant sobriety- but it's definitely a big part. After being told that my 'higher power' didn't necessarily have to be God, I stated that I felt my family was a higher power than myself. It took five minutes for multiple people to correct me and explain that I would need to find Jesus, even though one of their cardinal rules is not to judge. BYE-BYE
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AA is a cult http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-cult.html

The more boring a child is, the more the parents, when showing off the child, receive adulation for being good parents-- because they have a tame child-creature in their house.  ~~  Frank Zappa

Offline justonemore

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2010, 10:38:12 PM »
Yes. actually, I have served my time. Three years behind the fence for crimes i hadn't commited.I found a lot of very good men there, kind and decent and brave. and more reason to mistrust do-gooders and true-believers. J.O.M.
P.S.I've seen crimson roses growing through a chain-link fence. I can see the future and it don't make no difference.
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Offline SUCK IT

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2010, 02:46:45 PM »
Fornits is more of a cult than any program. Keep repeating bullshit phrases like the people you hate, you fucking hypocritical retards!!!!!!!!
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one day at a time

Offline Anne Bonney

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2010, 02:47:07 PM »
Awww, you seem upset.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
traight, St. Pete, early 80s
AA is a cult http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-cult.html

The more boring a child is, the more the parents, when showing off the child, receive adulation for being good parents-- because they have a tame child-creature in their house.  ~~  Frank Zappa

Offline SUCK IT

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2010, 02:48:35 PM »
Loser on standby fornits patrol at all times!!!! alert, alert!! LOL Take the helm Anne Bonney for the rest of your pathetic life!
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one day at a time

Offline Anne Bonney

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2010, 02:49:59 PM »
Quote from: "SUCK IT"
Loser on standby fornits patrol at all times!!!! alert, alert!! LOL Take the helm Anne Bonney for the rest of your pathetic life!


My, my you ARE upset!  Aww, I'm sorry.
« Last Edit: December 31, 1969, 07:00:00 PM by Guest »
traight, St. Pete, early 80s
AA is a cult http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-cult.html

The more boring a child is, the more the parents, when showing off the child, receive adulation for being good parents-- because they have a tame child-creature in their house.  ~~  Frank Zappa

Offline justonemore

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Re: Forced treatment = Stalinist reeducation
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2010, 05:32:25 PM »
I think people reveal more than they conceal ( it's what a lot of my work was based on,) it seems SUK IT's rage tells a lot. Not a lot that's cute or entertaining, but a lot anyway. J.O.M
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