Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Chain Gang Girls: What Hath We Wrought?

A female chain gang on the march. Looks a lot like a male chain gang on the march, from a distance. And, sadly, close up, too. Hot models rarely wind up on chain gangs, apparently. But hot prostitutes sometimes do.

Normally, holiday weekends are great weekends for picking up the odd mainstream bondage scene because all the cable stations do marathons, which means that movies and TV show episodes that don't normally air get shown because they happen to fit the marathon's theme.

But the marathons that ran this 4th of July just sucked from a mainstream bondage scene point of view. SciFi Channel did an original Twilight Zone marathon (hopeless). AMC was doing some kind of sucky song and dance marathon. Bondage stalwart Lifetime Movie Channel did a Christmas in July marathon and bondage stalwart Oxygen Channel did a bridezilla marathon.

Yes, suckity suck suck suck. Which is how I wound up taping a 6-hour block of real life Women Behind Bars shows on the Women's Entertainment channel. I don't ordinarily cover reality TV, but it was all there was.

Mostly this was a loss, too. Four hours of it was recounting how women did terrible things and went to jail for it. There was very little about how they survived in jail, even though they were pretty much all lifers or on death row, so they had plenty of surviving to do, and some had clearly DONE plenty of surviving, as their crimes had been committed in their 20s and they were WAAAAY past 20.

However, there WAS a 2-hour special called "Chain Gang Girls" that had a lot of images of women chained together by the ankles (duh!). It seems that in Arizona, sheriff and hateful little toad Joe Arpaio has been the first in the nation to create all-female chain gangs.

The show focused on the chaining up and the marching about of the chained women with an obsessiveness not seen in mainstream media since the Gor novels were shelved with the rest of the sword and sandal stuff. They were repeatedly shown chained up with loving descriptions of every aspect of the chains and the marching in chains, along with many, many humiliations and invasion of privacy that amounted to forced submission that are part of the program. (It should be pointed out, this is a voluntary program.)

The voiceover and the guards kept talking about the chain gang as a team-building and confidence-building enterprise, but the only thing I saw that the inmates were being taught was to do whatever the big lesbian guards said to do, without question or hesitation.

Unfortunately, the imagery itself was less than overwhelming because the women were wearing big, ugly work boots and they themselves were average looking at best. OK, there was one inmate who was good looking, and she was in for a six-month stay on a prostitution charge (surprise, surprise).

Work boots. All wrong. Would it have killed them to make the inmates wear fuck-me pumps? Or go barefoot? Well, it probably would have maimed them, come to think of it, considering they do manual labor six hours a day in 110-degree Arizona heat.

Which brings us to the point of today's post. The woman's prostitution rap was not the only minor, no-victims charge that was represented on the chain gang, in fact, it was the norm. Most of the women there were there for minor drug raps, a couple for minor theft raps, no sentences that were mentioned (and they always mentioned the crime and sentence when they focused on an inmate) were over six months long.

What the FUCK are we doing putting women on chain gangs for shit like this? Why are they in jail at all? The druggies need rehab and most of the thieves were obviously dirt poor. The prostitute -- what the hell did SHE do that was so wrong? Hell, anyone who looks at naked pictures of women on the Web are in NO position to criticize her morally, but I know there are a lot of guys who suck up porn like so many lizards who'd have no problem calling her a whore and saying she gets what she deserves.

Well, if that's so, there's a lot of guys out there who AREN'T getting what they deserve, and if they DID get what they deserve, they'd change their tune about the prostitute in short order.

What the fuck kind of nation are we, that we did shit like this, for so little reason? Are we a nation of assholes or what? I know lawnorder politics is popular, but hell, do we HAVE to be retarded about how we handle lawbreakers? Druggies are sometimes pathetic people who have no control over their lives, but what the hell good does locking them up and then releasing them, untreated, do for them? Or us? They're just going to go back to their old ways.

The way we handle issues like drug addiction, victimless crimes and poverty are just freaking retarded. We have the highest number of people incarcerated per capita in the freaking WORLD. It's not because we have more criminals. It's because we're handling our criminal justice system like it's a freaking magic wand that will cure every social ill.

We as a nation really have to stop being retarded about this, and so many other things.

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