Prison Radio
Lisa Strawn

Lisa Strawn, CMS Vacaville, “Positive Actions Create Everything.”

I’m reminded daily of who I am because of the intolerance others have. Their fears of what they don’t know about cloud their ability to be accepting of others. People talk about oppression and how they feel others treat them, but they don’t mention about how they treat their own people. Sometimes we are oppressed because we put ourselves out there for it to happen.

Why can’t we encourage each other to be better and more alike than different, because we really are more alike than we are different. When do we allow ourselves to think for ourselves and not follow the tormented mind of other people? When did we make the connection for unity amongst the races and genders in our society, instead of people pointing the finger and making statements about people that are human beings.

They say sticks and stones can break bones. Well, let me remind everyone that words also have the same effect. People become the victim of other’s hate and anger. So there is no difference than either statement.

Self-control and the ability to be kind to others is something that needs to be taught in and outside of prison. What’s wrong with treating others the way you want to be treated? What’s wrong with it is those who recreate the needless verbiage that then creates the destruction, violence, and death inside and outside of prison.

Positive actions create everything, and negativity is deadly. So instead of telling others to stop overreacting, how about telling yourself to watch the needless words that come out of their mouth. Why create a problem that isn’t needed?

So the next time that you say something about another race, gender, religion, or sexuality, think about this: we aren’t here to judge. We are here to learn, grow, and teach one another that positive actions create everything.

I was asked by [inaudible] at Flying Over Walls to talk about my daily life in prison. What I have just talked about is how the inmates and staff here saying it’s okay to call me Mr. and him and he and use gay and homosexual not only reflected in their daily language but as well in groups where I facilitate. And then I am asked by staff and male inmates not to overreact.

But yet, if I stood up in a room of 77 people and use the N-word or bashed someone’s gender or religion, I would be vilified by all. And this is how I’m treated because I need to be different from what a so-called inmate looks like in a male facility. I look, act, talk, and walk as a woman because that is just who I am. And those who see me in here only know who I am because of where I’m housed.

Outside of prison, the same intolerance bullies would not know I was born with male genitalia. So again, I say positive actions create everything. Negativity creates destruction. Pick your side.

Lisa Strawn, CMS Vacaville, “Positive Actions Create Everything.”

These commentaries are recorded by Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio.