#222 Y I Left FOI (retro)

June 6, 2010 at 11:58 pm Leave a comment

Y I Left Families of Inmates

I had gotten a few emails on this, and actually got a few new readers from the Daily Strength group “Families of Inmates”. I guess I need to discuss that with you guys so you can see where I stand.

As usual, email me at derf4000 (at) embarqmail (dot) com to ask how you can support my works and to ask me about issues to blog about.

I actually submitted a post to that site many months ago, under my original name, “masonik4”. I had forgotten all about it until a few months ago when I saw my post still there. I decided to join and see if I could share a few more posts.

This was going against myself because at that time I had already realized that prison support sites don’t really help others cope, they only share problems with others, with almost no venue for resolution. I learned this at Prison Talk Online and every other prison support site I have ever been on.

I joined the “Families of Inmates” and quickly started sharing posts with two goals in mind. ONE, to help people. TWO, to hopefully earn the respect of some members so that maybe they will consider me for my projects.

This is where a lot of idiots miss it…like moderators and the such.

My goal was not to “hawk a book”, it would have been the offspring of my main goal, which was to HELP PEOPLE. If I can get you to believe in what I say, and to find hope and faith, then you will naturally believe in me and thus would be more inclined to consider my “Grades of Honor” books or cards or such.

But people at sites like Daily Strength, Prison Talk, Lost Vault, Write A Prisoner and others foolishly think that an ex con is OBVIOUSLY there to sell his junk, or to con people out of money.


But despite me running into that problem every single time, I decided to try Daily Strength. So I posted numerous posts taken from my blogs, and nearly every one of them were well received by the members. I got lots of emails of people wanting to add me to their friends list, I had emails and many comments about my posts.

But during that time someone made some unfair comments on one of my posts. I take it very personal when someone tries to tell me that I don’t know what I am talking about, and I also know how that goes. I respond, they respond with more anger, and it gets out of hand, and the whole post gets removed and I get either banned or warned.

So I left.

But I kept getting comments on my posts, emails from members and friends requests by members. One person touched my heart in telling me how much my posts meant to her, and I could not leave her without at least trying again. So I went back.

At the time, I was sharing my first couple of parts of “Prison 101: Communication”. When I share a post on Daily Strength’s “Families of Inmates”, this is how I do it:

I copy straight from my blog, then edit it before I send it on the Daily Strength site. I try to edit out anything about my promotions or emailing me. But on part two of the “Prison 101” blog, I forgot to do that.

I posted it wondering if I should go back and take that part out, but didn’t see how to edit a post after you post it. So I left it. I got a few good comments from it and one or two friend requests, so I went back to check it out. When I did, I saw that my post was removed. I was so pissed that I immediately decided to get the hell out of there.

Now, why am I upset?

Because it is sad to see a so called “prison support” site that claims to really care about people, but in actuality treats people like common criminals. Yeah, I know there are rules, but let’s understand something about these prison support sites:

The BOTTOM LINE in these sites is to encourage help. I say once and I say a thousand times, a prison site filled with people who have never been in prison is as lost as a blind man in a fog with landmines. Sure, some people might be able to say a word or two, or talk about what their “man” did in prison, but if there is no foundation of TRUE EXPERIENCE, then the site has no basis to begin with.

I don’t care if there are 1000 wives, mothers or girlfriends on a site, if there aren’t people there that can speak from experience, or enough people to speak from experience, then the site is nothing more than a cackling hen’s party of misery.

My beef with Daily Strength is that whoever is the lord of the site never bothered to weigh options; they decided that after about 20 posts, my last words weren’t good enough and deleted me without the benefit of the doubt.

Lots of you don’t understand that, so let me explain. If I had just joined the site, and the VERY first post I shared was about my “Grades of Honor” books, then any member there can easily see that I didn’t come there to help. My post would appear selfish and self serving. Under those conditions, the moderator would have been much more justified to just delete the post or even warn the member.

This is based on the character of the writer. He didn’t contribute anything, he has no value to the site, so his words are treated as ill. I get that. But as I said before, I contributed at LEAST 12-20 posts, NONE of them being of any problem to the moderator, and most brought a lot of supportive comments. Many of those members made it clear to me of my contributions, which obviously was not common. In my contributions, I established a level of some respect that I didn’t come there to sell you a book, I came there to help you if I can.

This is something the people at Prison Talk, Lost Vault and Write A Prisoner will never understand, and until they do, those moderators will continue to treat ex felons like common criminals, while crying in the moonlight about why their loved one is having such a hard time. Be careful how you treat folks, sometimes it comes full circle.

My disappointment with Daily Strength is that whoever is the “lord” of that site never considered my past works, but rather found fault and swift punishment. You guys understand how similar this is to what ex felons go through? The person who deleted my post never thought about what I contributed and decided to at least give me the benefit of the doubt. If I share that many posts to help you, and my last one mentions my books, I would not be that upset if you deleted and then sent me a private message about it….

And NO I am not talking about one of those automated messages informing me that my post was deleted because of some rules. I mean TALK to me like a person…not like a criminal.

If what I shared had value, then the writer of it (me) has some value, and thus ought to be given a chance to be told in person why it was deleted. I am not saying to kiss my butt, I am saying treat me like a person. See many of you won’t understand that because to you, it just looks too simple. The post was deleted, get over it, right?

Yeah, say that when your son can’t get a job because the employer did a background check…deal with THAT.

Say that when your husband can’t get his life back because of his criminal record…deal with THAT.

Say that when your boyfriend tries to start an honest business, but can’t sell anything because nobody wants to support an “ex con”….deal with THAT.

It seems so simple to overlook the prejudice involved because it isn’t you. But when it happens to your son, your husband, your boyfriend, then it becomes a national crisis. But we are all a part of the problem, and also part of the solution.

This reminds me of when I made a post months ago about how a Christian radio station cheated me in wages, and how I had to get the Department of Labor on them. One idiot wrote to me challenging the idea that I was making it seem like I was never at fault.

Note to that idiot…you WORK, you get paid MINIMUM WAGE. That Christian radio station did not pay me minimum wage, and lied to the government that I was a volunteer…until I proved them wrong with the check stubs…I might be wrong in hell of a lot of things… but not that one.

But it proves that ex felons can “afford” to be treated bad because after all, that’s just the way it is…just deal with it.

When a couple of idiots on the NC forum of Prison Talk spat all over my posts and I tried to argue my point, the moderator of the site warned me of banishment by saying, “if someone says something that you don’t agree with on your posts, deal with it”.

Stupid idiot.

All these things are small bits of proof that some of the very people that claim to be involved in prison support really have no clue of what that means. People like that are going to make it very hard for an ex felon to prove himself, because even if he does right 99 times in a row, and messes up the 100th time, THAT is going to be the one they remember.

I have over 1200 posts on Prison Talk under “masonik4” and “Nolaw97”, and thousands of people have read and emailed me from it…but in the end I got banned because some stupid moderator didn’t like what someone said in support of me and they have apparently been reading my blogs… (and many STILL do).

Daily Strength is no different…and no better.

And the true shame is that for every idiot on these sites, there are a hundred people that my heart goes out to. There are lots of people who really appreciated what I shared, and I would have shared 100 more posts just to help them out. What problem would it be for me to copy and paste any of my 160+ blogs and share it on the site? I’ve got over 600 pages I can share!

But there is always someone who feels that they have to be the warden, the one in charge that takes no crap. And let’s be honest, I am not saying I was right in this situation. I told you that I forgot to edit that part out. But when you are dealing with support, then the strongest force of that must be compassion to humanity. That’s not what Daily Strength showed, and it shows me that they are not really that interested in helping.

But here’s the irony. Somebody will make a post about some prison book they bought at some book store about prison, and everybody there will swear by it like it was brought down by Moses himself. But that same author would have never made a post in his or her life, and would not take your email if you had a question to ask. But I get up there and after only one mention of my books, I am a con man.

Prison Talk treated me the same way.

It’s the great hypocrisy I live by, some of the greatest ironies of prison writing. While in prison, I was actually kicked out of prisons (transferred to another prison) in retaliation for writing about prison issues. When I got out, I was cheated in wages by one Christian station, and had my job stolen from me from a second Christian station after helped rebuild it when their General Manager died.

I have been banned from numerous prison support sites for even mentioning my books, but in the same forum there are members swearing by other prison books written by people who either never been in prison, or never made a post in their lives.

Folks, I don’t get it.

It is strange how to HELP folks, I got to go through all this hell. I know there is something spiritual in it, but I just felt like I had to share this with you. It was really bearing on me, even though there is a preseason football game on, (Bears vs. 49ers). I’ll catch the second half and enjoy it from there on.

I just had to get that off my chest because it ticks me off how you can try to do your best and get spit in the face by the very people you are trying to help. Lots of you have loved ones that is going to go through similar situations, so I share these feelings now so you will understand later.

Oh well, I am tired. Not so much mentally, but just a little bit. Nothing a cold pizza can’t cure, with some soda. Anyway, I hope you understood the underlying theme of what I shared. This isn’t about just a mistake, this is about how people deal with other people. When you deal impersonally with people, you lose that sense of human compassion. And if you run a prison support site, then you have undermined your own beliefs.

As for me, screw all those other support sites, I was never wanted there anyway.


Entry filed under: girlfriends with boyfriends in prison, God and prison, inmates, jail, LostVault, mothers with sons in prison, prison, prison abuse, prison blogs, prison books, prison cards, prison food, prison jobs, prison mail, prison pen pals, prison support sites, Prison Talk Online, Prisonbid, rehabilitation, son in prison.

#221 The day after prison… 2 years later (retro) #223 Current list of works (retro)

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