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Blog Reader Inspired to Write in Hopes of Ending Soy Feeding Program

a red envelope.

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My Letter to the Governor of Illinois

by Stanley Fishman, Hartke is Online! Contributor

Dear Governor Quinn:

I am a resident of California, not Illinois. But concern for human rights does not end at state lines.

I am appalled by the suffering inflicted upon Illinois prisoners who are forced to eat a high soy diet. Many of these prisoners have suffered terribly from the effects of processed soy toxins.  This suffering clearly violates the constitutional provisions banning cruel and unusual punishment.

Many of these prisoners are plaintiffs in an action against the state of Illinois because of their suffering from the high soy diet.

It has been established that a poor diet can cause prisoners to become violent and uncooperative.

I realize that the policy of forcing prisoners to eat a high soy diet was instituted by your predecessor. I am now asking you to change that policy and provide these prisoners with a good natural diet through their own efforts.

Virginia and other states have prisoners raise their own food. I ask that you institute a program whereby the soy is replaced with food raised by the prisoners themselves, both vegetables and livestock. This would be completely consistent with the Illinois Farm Foods Jobs Act, and would enable prisoners to actually help supply Illinois with organic produce.

It has been shown time and time again that giving prisoners a good diet and meaningful work is the best way to rehabilitate them. What work could be more meaningful than having the prisoners raise good, organic food that they would eat? This would not only give them a feeling of accomplishment, but they would actually experience the benefits of healthy food.

The prisoners would almost certainly raise more food than they could eat, and the surplus could be sold to help with the cost of their incarceration. The healthy diet of organic food would greatly reduce the medical costs of the Illinois prison system.

In summary, replacing processed soy foods with organic food raised by the prisoners would:

1.   Stop the cruel and unusual punishment of Illinois prisoners;
2.   Help rehabilitate the prisoners and provide them with useful job skills;
3.   Improve the mental and physical health of the prisoners, thus reducing medical costs;
4.   Help fulfill the objectives of the Illinois Farm Foods Jobs Act;
5.   Increase the organic food supply in Illinois, while raising money for the prison system.

Sincerely,

Stanley Fishman

Note from Kimberly:

I illustrated this post with a red envelope, because this letter is a form of love and compassion for our fellow man. Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a letter like this go to Governor Quinn from all 50 States and even a few foreign countries? It is easy to do. I plan to write my letter and submit it online. I challenge each of my blog readers to submit their letter, and then comment on this post. Tell us what state/country you are from and one key point your letter made. Stanley has said that all are welcome to use ideas from his letter. I would recommend customizing it a little, though.

Read yesterday’s blog post about the prison soy case that inspired Stan to write the governor.

Here is the Illinois Governor’s contact info:

Governor Pat Quinn

Office of the Governor
207 State House
Springfield, IL 62706

In place of email, please use this web form:

http://www.illinois.gov/gov/contactthegovernor.cfm

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Comments

  1. Kimberly Hartke says:

    Here is my letter:
    Dear Governor Quinn:

    I am writing from Virginia, where prison food is also noxious, but I do not know to what extent they are being fed soy.

    I am the publicist working on the Illinois prison soy lawsuit. My familiarity with the plight of these prisoners causes me to write you today.

    You are to be commended for your Farm Foods Jobs Act. This initiative is the perfect way to end the feeding of toxic soy protein isolate to your prison population.

    Ending this poor diet, and giving prisoners a nourishing, sustaining diet can prevent prisoners from becoming violent and uncooperative. It may also go along way toward restoring these men to society.

    The right to life doesn’t end at the prison gate. These men and women in prison, rightly or wrongly, have a right to a healthy life while they are behind bars and when they are released.

    Returning them to their communities in better shape than when they went in, is the only way to keep them from returning to a life of crime.

    In my state, Virginia the prisoners raise their own food. They use public land to graze livestock and the program is so productive they sell the meat to neighboring states.

    I ask that you institute a program whereby the soy is replaced with food raised by the prisoners themselves, both vegetables and livestock. This would be completely consistent with the Illinois Farm Foods Jobs Act, and would enable prisoners to actually help supply Illinois with organic produce.

    It has been shown time and time again that giving prisoners a good diet and meaningful work is the best way to rehabilitate them. What work could be more meaningful than having the prisoners raise good, organic food that they would eat? This would not only give farm job skills, so they could be employed by a farm upon their release, but they would actually experience the benefits of healthy food.

    The prisoners would almost certainly raise more food than they could eat, and the surplus could be sold to help with the cost of their incarceration. The healthy diet of organic food would greatly reduce the medical costs of the Illinois prison system.

    Thanks in advance for your attention to this matter. As a fellow Catholic, I am hopeful that you will have mercy on the men and women in your correctional facilities. Your leadership on this issue will be an example to other states around the country where soy feeding is also a huge problem.

    Sincerely,

    Kimberly A. Hartke

    Two states down, 48 to go!

  2. I just wanted to let you know that I mailed the letter below.

    Dear Governor Quinn:

    Although I am a New Jersey resident, I am concerned about the Illinois prisoners who are forced to eat a high soy diet. Based on the research by the Weston A. Price Foundation, it appears that many of these prisoners are suffering health problems as a result of having little choice but to eat large amounts of soy containing food. This sounds to me like cruel and unusual punishment, a violation of the United State Constitution. I urge you to look into this matter.

    I think a sensible course of action would be to teach the prisoners how to grow their own food. These skills in farming will provide them with an opportunity to seek employment in this area after their prison term ends.

    Sincerely,

    [Anonymous at the request of the sender]
    New Jersey

  3. That’s a great idea! I agree, that giving the prisoners ownership and responsibility for the raising of their own food, will lead to renewed self worth and confidence. Also, eating organic has a ton health benefits. Not to mention the saving that taxpayers would realize by insourcing (to the prisoners) food production!

    Thanks to your post, I’m going to look into the practices of my state’s prison system!
    .-= Darvin@Organic Food ´s last blog ..Do Follow Blog, Comment, Keyword Luv and Top Commenter =-.

  4. I agree that enpowering the prisoners to grow and eat their own renewable crops is a much better alternative. It gives them a purpose and has to be a cheaper option!

    Peter

  5. Great article! I love your site I will bookmark it.

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