Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Letter to Eric Holder

July 25, 2009

Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Jr.
DOC #447655
DCI, P. O. Box 700
Waupun, WI 53963-0700

Eric Holder
U. S. Attorney General
USDOJ, Civil Rights Division
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N. W.
Washington, DC 20530


Previous letter of April 14, 2009

Dear Mr. Holder:

By this letter I am, again, asking you to direct the U. S. DOJ to bring, for Black Americans and other minorities imprisoned within Wisconsin, a civil rights suit charging the state of Wisconsin with racial profiling. It is only through such a suit that the holocaust of imprisonment of Black Americans can be ended.

I suggest that the basis of such a suit be the irrefutable statistics generated by the U. S. justice and Wisconsin prison systems. Consider that the U. S. is roughly 5% of the world's population yet it holds more than 25% of the world's prisoners. More than 50% of those prisoners are Black Americans which implies that more than 12% of the world's prisoners is American Blacks who make up less than 0.6% of the world's population! If any other country produced such stats against one of its minority populations we'd drag it before the U. N. and charge it with human rights violations.

Specifically, in Wisconsin Blacks are less than 6% of the state's population but more than 50% of its prisoners, while whites, who are 90% of the population, are only 45% of the prisoners. This yields a stunning ratio of 50% / 6% : 45% / 90% or 16:1. The shocking and false implication being that Blacks in Wisconsin are 16 times more criminal than whites!

Though my research is limited by my circumstances I can find in the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) data no other state more egregious in its violations of the civil rights of Black Americans than is Wisconsin. Among the world's rogue states Wisconsin's imprisonment statistics makes it the number one violator of the civil rights of its minority citizens. Its politicians have, without blanching, remorse, or remedy, admitted to the racial bias of its justice system then built more prisons in support of that bias.

Though I implore the U. S. DOJ to bring suit against the state of Wisconsin I know it will be joined, in support of Wisconsin, by almost every state in America. A victory by the DOJ would have the effect of cleansing the American justice system of what may be the last institutionalized vestiges of racism in America.

The BJS produced statistics of bias and abuse of Blacks in the American justice system should of themselves shame this nation into making the needed reforms. However, reform will only come from challenge through a court confrontation which exposes what's hidden behind the walls of imprisonment. The failures of justice in this nation must be exposed to the world thereby embarrassing us into change.

In the name of Black, and in truth all, prisoners I beg you to bring this suit to save and restore the lives of millions of Americans. I ask you if not now then when and if not you then who?

The President has stood up against America's violations of justice and human rights at Guantanamo in Cuba and Abu Ghraib in Iraq, will you do the same for Americans here at home?


Warren G. Lilly, Jr.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Videos of Warren Lilly being forced fed

This article about Warren Lilly, who has been on a hunger strike, was published on June 20th, 2009 in Isthmus Weekly.

Here are the snippets of the 4 hour long film of forced feeding of Warren Lilly:

Lilly- "Idiot's Club" from The Daily Page on Vimeo.

Lilly- talk with "Seaweed" from The Daily Page on Vimeo.

Lilly - 2/28/09 breakfast "stop this" from The Daily Page on Vimeo.

Lilly - 2/28/09 Breakfast "Oscar Mayer" from The Daily Page on Vimeo.

Lilly - "Lavern and Shirley reruns" from The Daily Page on Vimeo.

Monday, June 1, 2009



In the Matter of Case No. 07CV392


Over this past weekend, the Court watched the two-hour and nine minute video off of Exhibit 1, which was the video of the forced feeding of Inmate Lilly on the evening of February 27, 2009. This was not watched in the courtroom, and therefore has not been transcribed by a court reporter. In fact, it would be difficult for a court reporter to transcribe much of it because of ambient noise and comments by other people walking down the hall and other inmates in adjoining cells. However, it would give the reader a good idea of what the process consisted of and some of what Inmate Lilly had to say.

I did not write down everything that he had to say, and maybe only have a third of what he said here, but it still gives the reader a reasonable sketch of what transpired during the two-hour feeding. Primarily what I left out in the statements of Mr. Lilly are many additional shouts of “STOP THIS!!”. Much of what Lilly had to say was shouted out. The loudest shouting, however, is shown in ALL CAPS, with the very loudest followed by double exclamation points.
The actual start time on the DVD on February 27th was 5:32 p.m. However, as the DVD is running, I don’t have that clock, but I rather have the DVD internal clock, and those are the times that I am referencing below.

:30 Four SWAT team members are introduced by the white shirt officer. Two team members have large bolsters. All four have helmets with face shields, latex gloves, heavy clothing, high boots, etc. 1:15 The team announces itself to Mr. Lilly. Lilly requests to use his toilet. He is given a chance to do that before they enter.

They go through a series of questioning asking such things as whether he would accept a meal tray, and whether he would wear clothing. He is told that if he won’t accept the meal tray they will be force feeding him.

3:30 Just before they enter, they order him to lie on his bed on his stomach with his head turned away from them, his hands crossed behind his back. Lilly complies. The team enters, applies handcuffs which are double locked behind Mr. Lilly’s back. Some type of a nylon strap is used to restrain his ankles.

5:03 He is seated into the restraint chair.

5:20 Leg restraints are applied, as well as chest restraints. He ahs been immobilized except for his head.

5:50 Nurse enters with equipment. Nurse getting things ready.

Lilly is talking to the camera. Talks about the cost of having all these guards around him for two hours watching him sitting in the restraint chair. He says something about a cost of $18,000 a year for this feeding process. He concludes his remarks with, “Welcome to the idiot club.”

9:05 Insertion of the tube after reading him more questions and statements.

9:25 Tube insertion has been completed. Lilly makes statement, “I am still losing weight, by sitting in the chair for two hours . . . I did not lose weight at New Lisbon.” The feeding then starts.

12:38 Lilly complaining about the cold and about them leaving his door open. Lilly says, “They left the door open for two hours so the temperature goes down to 40 degrees . . . Pray to God, I am not going to survive two hours of this!”


15:15 Lilly notes there was some unidentified witness observing, maybe from BHS.

15:54 Lilly: “Why would you purposely subject me to these cold temperatures?”


16:40 Lilly: “ This makes no sense for you to freeze me . . . how am I to gain weight if you are freezing me?”

17:15 Lilly: “STOP THIS! You are people, you have a conscience.”


18:20 Lilly: “The court did not order that your freeze me . . . or that you keep me in this chair for two hours.”


19:38 Lilly: “What are you going to allow them to do next?”
Several times during this process Lilly complains about how low his core temperature is getting down to and how dangerous this is.

20:30 Lilly: “Lt. Schultz, don’t do this, don’t allow this! . . . This cannot be condoned by your morality.”

21:36 Lilly: “People are going in and out from rec . . . you can feel the cold air rolling into this room!”
Lilly: “This is why America is going to hell . . . atrocities in the name of the state!”

22:30 Lilly: “How can this be done in this country? How can you all stand around and then go home to your children and say ‘I had a good day at work?’”

[The feeding tube is still in his nose this whole time.]

24:35 Lilly: “STOP IT!! STOP IT!!”


26:13 A changing of the guard. Two SWAT team members are replaced by two others. The ones who are on “active duty” are standing just behind and to each side of Mr. Lilly in case he tries anything.

27:10 Lilly is trying to exhort the C wing inmates to protest by banging on their doors or by screaming, but they are silent. [I think most of them are out at rec now because I don’t hear any ambient inmate noise.]

Lilly is now damning his fellow inmates saying that, “This is the problem with black people . . . they take it too quietly.”


29:56 Lilly: “They are flooding the basement with cold air . . . they want me to quit . . . they are going to do this three times a day, six hours a day, they are going to freeze me until the day I die.”

31:30 It appears that Lilly’s knees are shaking together, shivering. He still has the tube up his nose.

32:40 Now you can hear another inmate saying something to Lilly about he is taking notes of what they are doing and he has sent similar notes to the Governor and to their Congressman.

34:07 The other inmate continues to yell at the staff to stop this, that they have made their point. He points out that Lilly is black and that all of them are white, and there could be a claim for racism.

35:03 Another inmate mentions Lilly’s nakedness and how cold it is.

36:50 Lilly shouts out his name and states his age and indicates that he, “is protesting that the DOC abuses people when they don’t have to. . . and now they are trying to freeze me out . . . to kill me.”

38:00 The other inmate now says he is going to go on a hunger strike too, and that he is not a black person.

38:21 The nurse re-enters and checks something, exiting about 17 seconds later.

As we proceed, there are longer periods of silence now between Lilly’s outbursts. It appears that he is still shaking/ shivering.

43:30 Another guard change for one of the individuals.

44:00 Lilly is asking just one person in his cell wing to go to their door and to say the Lord’s Prayer out loud, just one person [no one does so]. Lilly: “Such bravery!”
Lilly: If you are a Muslim, come to your door and praise Allah, won’t you do that?”

The DOC staff has been stone silent this whole time, other than the preliminary questions that are asked prior to the feeding.


47:45 The nurse is back, leaving again about 18 seconds later.
I believe they put a towel down on the restraint chair seat before they put Lilly onto the seat. After Lilly was fastened to the chair, a towel was placed over his lap. He is naked other than for that. He has nothing on his chest or shoulders.

49:57 Lilly: “Well, Judge Bissonnette, this is the level of barbarity they have come to, because you have turned your back!”

50:55 Lilly: “If it doesn’t work, keep on doing it!”


54:10 Lilly: “STOP THIS! Stop this, it won’t work! What next? What are you going to do when this doesn’t work?”

55:20 Lilly leans over and regurgitates off the left side of his chair.

57:40 Another changing of both guards. They stand behind him with their hands folded in front of them.

58:00 More ambient noise, sounds like inmates returning from rec, or from supper, or somewhere.

59:30 Lilly: “I don’t care if you go to four hours . . . even 24 hours! I WILL NOT QUIT!!”

1:01:36 Nurse re-enters.

1:02:07 Nurse leaves again.

1:04:50 Lilly: “STOP THIS BARBARITY!!”

1:06:02 Lilly: “STOP THIS! STOP THIS!!”

1:06:32 (Lilly sighing) . . . “How low will they go?”

1:07:33 (Lilly groaning)

1:07:54 Lilly has somehow manipulated the feeding tube towards his back and has grabbed it with one of his hands. The security staff makes a statement that it looks like he is now trying to pull the tube out of his nose. The nurse and the SWAT team respond. They are yelling at him to let go of the tube. A guard is grabbing Lilly’s head and forcibly turning it to one side. He is responding, “OK I am letting go.”

1:09:13 The tube is out of his nose, but they are still trying to get it out of his hand.

1:09:58 Nurse re-enters with a new tube.

1:10:20 Nurse leaves.

1:10:40 Lilly, yelling out to another inmate, “I grabbed the tube and ripped it up, and now they are going to get another one.”

1:11:50 The tube has been reinserted. They had to hold his head still in order to get him to cooperate with the reinsertion. 1:12:38 The nurse is using a stethoscope to listen for air in Mr. Lilly’s stomach to make sure the tube is in the right place.

1:12:55 The tube is taped in place.

1:13:30 Feeding is restarted and nurse leaves.

1:13:40 Lilly: “STOP THIS!!”
A few minutes of silence here. Lilly’s head is down. His knees are still shaking together.

1:21:50 Lilly: “STOP THIS! . . . STOP THIS!! . . . STOP IT!’
Throughout this entire tape the security staff has remained very calm and stoic in the face of his complaining and screaming. Nothing is ever said by any of the security staff, other than when they needed to direct him to let go of the tube, etc.

1:23:20 Lilly: “STOP THIS! STOP THIS!”

1:23:52 Another change of the guard. Lilly’s knees are still knocking together.

1:26:30 Nurse walks in with hands in his pockets, makes an observation and walks out a few seconds later.
For most of this time the camera has been in a fixed position with a fixed focus. Presumably it is on a tripod. It is focused on Lilly in the restraint chair, but you can also visualize the security staff standing around him.

1:29.20 Lilly: “Plan 3 doesn’t appear to be working!”
I am now hearing a lot of ambient inmate chatter in the background.

1:34:37 Lilly: “STOP THIS!!”

1:36:00 Lilly is saying something, but I can’t understand it over the ambient inmate banter going on out in the hall or in the adjoining cells.

1:36:58 Lilly: “All you have to do is put the right people in charge and they will do anything . . . anything!”

1:37:55 Lilly talking about other inmates and how they are not protesting what the DOC is doing to him and facetiously noting how brave they all are.

1:39:37 Lilly: “STOP THIS!!”

1:43.33 Lilly has been listening to some chatter down the hall between other inmates, and then he jumps in, “All your talking is a copout . . . why don’t you put yourself on the line?”
Some dialogue between Lilly and the other inmates is occurring, but it is impossible to understand exactly what the inmate(s) is saying.

1:45:30 Lilly: “All I am asking is that you raise your voice in protest . . . and your voice joins mine.”

1:46:38 Lilly talking to the other inmate down the hall, “You have survived 18 years in here by not doing anything.”

1:47.21 Lilly: “I am telling you that I grew up in Birmingham, Alabama. I am telling you that I marched with King. I am telling you that I have been protesting ever since I have been old enough to do it. I am telling you that the first time I got involved in protest is when I woke up one Sunday morning and my house was shaking because those bastards had bombed a church down the street.”

1:48:05 Another inmate down the hall is talking about Martin Luther King and I think has made a comment about how King didn’t do anything for inmates and how that is a whole different issue than what King stood for.

1:48.20 Lilly, disagreeing with the other inmate, “This is all the same thing.” Lilly arguing that what happened in Birmingham is the same thing that is happening in the prisons now.

1:49.55 Lilly, referencing another inmate down the hall named Al, “I agree with Al . . . everybody has to do their own thing.”

1:51:37 Nurse, in the maroon shirt, comes and stands in the doorway and looks in for a few seconds.

1:52:30 Lilly: “They’re not afraid of me, they’re afraid of you . . . they are afraid that you might get inspired and do something. They let me scream my head off, they freeze my nuts off, they abuse my rights, and nobody is going to protest. They win again. They have nobody to fear.”

1:54.20 Lilly’s knees are still shaking, although there has been no mention of cold for a long time.

1:54:50 Lilly: “We need to be together . . . just one of us fighting them will never work . . . we need to be together . . . why do you think that civil rights did eventually work.”

1:56:00 Lilly: “All over the world the same fight is being fought. Look at Guantanamo . . . those prisoners down there . . . they all went in on a huger strike together.” Lilly then talks about 5,000 inmates in Greece doing some type of a hunger strike.

1:57:40 Lilly: “Instead, we let them feed us radios and TV’s, making us happy inmates. Yes sir, and what you hope for is that everything was going to get better.”

1:58:40 Lilly: “They are pacifying you, all the time upping the number of years you are in prison . . . they won’t even give you parole, they’ll give you flat screen TV’s, how stupid can you be? They are making their money by keeping you here . . . like a god damn cow . . . as long as the keep you here, they make money.”

2:00:08 Lilly vomiting again off the left side of his chair.

2:00:45 Lilly: “It’s not working, I’m still throwing up most of the formula! ASSHOLES, IT’S NOT WORKING! MORANS, IT’S NOT WORKING!”

2:01:46 Nurse back in the room.

2:02:05 Nurse leaves.

2:02:28 Lilly: “STOP THIS!!”

2:02:46 Changing of the guards again.

2:03:45 Lilly: “STOP THIS!!”

2:06:00 White shirt (lieutenant or captain, I don’t know which) passes across the doorway and looks in.

2:06:30 Lilly makes some comment about warm for two hours, but it’s not understandable.

2:07:39 Nurse back in the room.

2:07:48 Camera is taken off of the tripod and is being handheld.

2:08:25 Checking on the feed bag. The SWAT team starts to gather together around Mr. Lilly.

2:09:15 The tube is being removed.
The white-shirted officer walks out and faces the camera. Indicates that it is now 7:42 p.m. She indicates that the tube feeding has been finished and the report has ended. The video doesn’t show Mr. Lilly getting removed from his chair. When it ends, he is still in the chair with the security staff gathering around him.

This Summary is dated: April 21st, 2009.

Andrew P. Bissonnette
Circuit Court Judge

Saturday, May 30, 2009

New Ruling from Judge Bissonnette

For Immediate Release

On May 19, 2009, Judge Andrew P. Bissonnette, of the Dodge County Circuit court, in case number 2007-CV-00392 WI DOC v Lilly, issued a 64-page Decision and Order (D&O) terminating the forced feeding of Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Jr.. Lilly, for five years, has been hunger striking and was being forced fed by the DOC. His is the longest running hunger strike in Wisconsin history and perhaps in the history of the United States.

Judge Bissonnette’s D&O effectively acknowledged Lilly’s right to, if he so chooses, hunger strike unto his death. LIlly has been hunger striking since May 2004 in protest of Wisconsin’s race and class biased justice system. Lilly states that Black Wisconsinites are imprisoned at 16 to 20 times the rates of white Wisconsinites, and that similar rates are also seen in the imprisonment of the mentally ill and the illiterate. He says it’s those who are least capable of defending themselves and the poor who now populate Wisconsin’s prisons.

Germane to Bissonnette’s D&O was the question of whether or not Lilly was being tortured. Excerpts from the D&O follow.

“The Court has ordered the termination of all force feeding orders of Mr. Lilly and has enjoined any future such orders.” Cover letter to D&O.

“Exhibit 9 is an article documenting the tough steps taken by the U.S. military at the detention center in Guantanamo. It includes extensive discussion of the use of the restraint chair. In fact, it includes a descriptive paragraph that is eerily similar to the circumstances Mr. Lilly has related to the Court [and are depicted in Exhibits 1 and 2 which are graphic videos of Mr. Lily’s force feedings], ...”. D&O pages 20 - 21. Bold added for emphasis.

“Some commentators equate any use of the restraint chair in and of itself to a form of torture. The Court doesn’t necessarily agree with that broad of a statement in every circumstance, but certainly Mr. Lilly’s complaints about he particular duration and method of using the restraint chair, and its effects on him physically in this case, contributes to the Court’s finding of compelling circumstances warranting the termination of the force feeding order”. D&O page 16.

“Forcible feeding is never ethically acceptable. Even if intended to benefit, feeding accompanied by threats, coercion, force or use of physical restraints is a form of inhuman and degrading treatment. Exhibit 8, Declaration of Malta at 21”. D&O page 17.

“28) That the DOC most recently was engaging in a practice of employing four SWAT team members, [a camera operator], and an officer, and an RN [and sometimes two] in extended feedings taking more than two hours, of Mr. Lilly, three times a day, and seven days a week. Therefore, that the taxpayers cost of violating his constitutional right to be free of unwanted medical care is somewhere in the vicinity of $200,000 and $300,000 dollars per year; ...”. D&O page 59.

To date, by the best estimates available the DOC has spent over one million dollars (1,000,000) forcibly feeding Mr. Lilly. Additional information is available, on the costs and other issues at www.warrenlilly.blogspot.com

Visit Lilly's blog or contact him at

Warren G. Lilly, Jr.
DOC # 447655
Dodge Correctional Institution
P.O. Box 700
Waupun, WI 53963-0700

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Video Taped Violence Against Warren Lilly by DOC Guards

2-14 thru 2-28, 2008 WCI Fifteen days of torture via extended intubation and being held naked in a restraint chair in temperatures of fifty-five degrees and below.

6-19-08 noon NLCI Maced, though hands and feet chained, while partially strapped in a restraint chair.

6-19-08 NLCI Tazered four times though hands and feet chained while partially strapped in a restraint chair.

1-10-07 RCI While laying in surrender position maced, chained, and dragged on my face during a strip cage extraction.

1-13,17,18 & 2-8,9,11,15 -07 SCI While laying in surrender position head battered into wall by 'flying guards', arms wrenched up painfully, chains tightened to inflict pain.

6-8,9-06 SCI While laying in surrender position maced, chained stripped, forced to walk backwards with head jammed backwards by guard hanging on me, wrists then twisted in torture ritual during stripcage extraction.

2-28 thru 3-20-05 RCI While laying in surrender position on cement floor guards took 'flying leaps' to pound me into the cement then wrenched my arms and legs while chaining me.
Every videotaped violent incident is not listed here. These are perhaps the most egregious events. It must be kept in mind that any unnecessary violence against an unresisting prisoner is a violation of his human rights.

Court Sanctioned Barbarism: Fifteen Days of Torture


In January 2008 Judge A. P. Bissonnette affirmed a non-existent order supposedly issued by Judge A. B. Torhorst1, of the Racine County Circuit Court in May 2004, allowing the DOC to forcibly feed me. Moreover, in a backdoor deal with the DOC, Bissonnette disallowed force feedings on Sundays cynically cutting the DOC's expenses due to my strike by one seventh but claiming a paternal interest in relieving the thrice-a-day, seven-day-a-week stress of the force feedings on me and the security staff.

That backdoor deal became the source of all my troubles. You see Bissonnette's order also cut my barely subsistence intake by one seventh. To an astute mind this would imply an impending weight loss, unfortunately there were no astute minds in the DOC Health Service Units (HSUs) to which I would be subjected over the next year.

First up to bat (from Jan. 2008 to Jun. 2008), and striking out, was the Jackson Correctional Institution's (JCI) HSU. I was transferred to JCI immediately after Bissonnette signed his No-Sunday-Feedings order. Note that January is the coldest month of the winter and that I was imprisoned in a cage with a high temperature of around fifty-five degrees. Needless to say my weight dropped. Of course the JCI HSU immediately looked past the obvious and accused me of purging the force feeding formula.

To prevent the suspected purging the JCI HSU extended the force feeding sessions from fifteen minutes to two hours. Now instead of forty-five minutes a day the procedures took six hours, which, because the intubation tube was left in my nasal passage the entire time, caused internal damage that lead nasal passage bleeding.

The extended sessions also meant the extraction-team (x-team) had to stay suited-up for the full six hours and, of course, draw overtime for the duty. At roughly $20 per hour per person the extra cost of the extended sessions rapidly built, up. After months of such treatment my net weight gain was 1.4 pounds which, suspect, was attributable mostly to a difference in the scales used to weigh me. With staff and administrative overtime the JCI venture came to over $16,457 per pound gained. The JCI HSU admitted its defeat (not its stupidity), issued me a blanket for warmth, which I'd asked for back in January, and resumed the fifteen minute feeding sessions.

Shortly thereafter I was transferred to the New Lisbon Correctional Institution (NLCI) (from Jun. 2008 to Oct. 2008) where, regrettably for me, no one had told the NLCI HSU staff that the JCI HSU had stopped the extended force feedings.

NLCI, to assure my compliance with the extended feedings, first maced then tazered2 me. I took the NLCI HSU to court and got an injunction against the violence and the extended intubations. The injunction limited the feedings to fifteen minutes or less and limited the time the intubation tube could remain in my person to nine minutes or less. Unbeknownst to me the NLCI HSU, in order to meet the court's nine minute limit, switched force feeding formulas from the high density Ensure-Plus (350 calories per 8 oz.) to the low density Ensure-HP (230 calories per 8 oz.). To understand the full impact of this change consider that until January 2008 I was force feed eight 8-oz. cans of Ensure-Plus per day (8 * 350 cals.. = 2,800 cals..) for seven days a week (7 * 2,800 cals.. = 19,600 cals..). After January I was force fed only six days a week (6 * 2,800 cals.. = 16,800 cals..). With the surreptitious switch to Ensure-HP my daily caloric intake dropped (8 * 230,cals.. = 1,840 cals..) with a commensurate drop in weekly intake (6 * 1,840 cals.. = 10,400 cals..).

On the tail of this formula botch up I was transferred to Waupun Correctional Institution (WCI) (from Oct. 2008 to Feb. 2009) where my weight began to precipitously drop. At first I assumed the weight drop was due to the colder cage I was imprisoned in than at NLCI but later I noticed the nurses were force feeding me Ensure-HP instead of Ensure-Plus. Knowing that if my weight continued to drop the morons at the WCI HSU would, as did those at the NLCI HSU, assume I was the agent of the drop I notified them of the formula change and its consequences. Not only did the HSU ignore the notification it immediately began accusing me of purging the formula!

Not wanting to go through the same nonsense as before at NLCI I notified the court and again the court stepped in and ordered the WCI HSU to use the correct formula. However, despite the court's intervention, the WCI HSU did not immediately switch to the correct formula until my weight dropped to around 125 pounds. The WCI HSU then declared they were faced with an "emergency" medical condition and began to aggressively treat the weight loss by abusing me. They'd allowed months to pass of improper treatment then began an unnecessarily aggressive campaign of extended and extra force feedings.

Judge Bissonnette's Complicity

On February 201 2009 attorney Gloria Thomas of the Wisconsin DOC Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) sent to Judge Bissonnette a copy of my article 'Notes from Starvin' Naked Marvin: A Call to Arms3 . She concluded "Lilly's determined to disrupt the orderly administration of the WI DOC, ...". Well, duh!

On February after receiving this letter Judge Bissonnette conspicuously and conveniently absented himself from the bench allowing attorney Thomas to seek a "emergency" order from Dodge county Judge Pfitzinger allowing the DOC to forcibly abuse me. This was done even though a careful reading of doctor Paul Sumnitch's affidavit did not suggest that my condition was critical and could not await Judge Bissonnette's return.

Pfizinger’s order either knowingly, or because Thomas violated her duty as an officer of the court to inform Pfizinger of previous rulings, violated the Saenz ruling and several rulings issued by Bissonnette. Thomas had a plain and positive duty to inform the court of such rulings, she pointedly did not. In particular the Saenz ruling affirmed my due process right to a hearing before Judge Pfitzinger. The DOC, under Saenz had a one-shot right to an ex-parte ruling to initiate the order to force feed but after that ruling the patient retained a due process right to be notified and represented at all future hearings on the matter. Further, since the Saenz ruling was against a Dodge court judge, it is almost impossible that Pfitzinger could have been ignorant of the import of the Saenz ruling on the order he issued.

The Torture Sessions

Initially the torture sessions began with me being force fed within the court ordered nine minute limit then left in the restraint chair for an hour alone in my cage three times a day. When you consider that I was naked, had been fed 2.2 pounds of cold formula, and was left for an hour strapped in a metal chair in a room with a temperature of fifty-five degrees or less, it quickly becomes apparent that the sessions were not about restoring my weight or maintaining my health, they were about breaking my hunger strike.

In an attempt to stop such mistreatment I taught my self to purge the formula even though held in the restraint chair which was supposed to prevent purging. After any feeding I could purge thirty to fifty percent of the formula, this of course caused my weight to continue to drop. I offered to stop the purging and to help to get my weight back in what I considered a safe range if the WCI HSU would forego the use of the restraint chair. Their response to my offer was the Pfitzinger order which upped the allowed mistreatment.

Under the Pfitzinger order the WCI HSU dripped the formula into my body over a two hour period, this was in violation of the Bissonnette order which allowed only nine minutes or less of intubation to preserve my health. The Pfitzinger order also allowed the WCI HSU to hold me in the restraint chair for two hours per session. To insure that I was maximally uncomfortable the door to my cage was left open to the hallway which had connecting doors to the outside and the outside doors were opened. The temperature of my cage dropped to under forty degrees during some of the two~hour feeding sessions. When I asked to be covered from the cold the security staff responded that security concerns would not allow it, and HSU staff responded that if I was cold I could wear clothing and resume eating. (Oddly, when I transferred to DCI for emergency treatment following WCI's maltreatment, the first thing done when DCI force fed me was to cover me with a blanket!).

The WCI HSU continued this maltreatment from February 23rd to the 28th, during this time I continued to purge thirty to fifty percent of the formula and my weight continued to drop. Finally, after the noon force feeding on the 28th, the WCI HSU declared my condition an emergency condition beyond their abilities and dumped me at the Dodge Correctional Institution's Infirmary for emergency medical care.

Continued Duplicity of Bissonnette

Bissonnette's duplicity did not end with his conspicuously convenient absence. One would think that upon his return to the bench, if his absence had not been feigned, that he'd especially take note of emergency orders issued in his brief absence, remarkably he did not.

On March 5, 2009 during another of his ambush hearings (five minutes before an unscheduled hearing a guard rouses me and takes me to the phone and says I think its you lawyer or somebody), I stated that Pfitzinger's order violated both Saenz and his rulings Bissonnette said, "I haven't review it yet". This was almost some two weeks after its issue and his return to the bench!

Yet when I, in writing, pointed out how his convenient absence had allowed Pfitzinger's violation of my rights and the court rulings he quickly rescinded Pfitzinger order. Had I maintained my hunger strike during the interval between the issuance of the Pfitzinger order and Bissonnette's rescission of the order I, no doubt, would now be dead.

As I review what I’ve written I’m saddened by my inability to portray the brutality and barbarism to which I was subjected. To be bound for two hours in a metal chair completely helpless, exposed to freezing temperatures, naked and enraged at the mistreatment but helpless to stop it. To sit shivering on a slab on cement thinly covered by what they euphemistically call a mattress, vigorously rubbing your hands, arms, legs, and feet for an hour after each force feeding session trying to restore warmth to your body and knowing that in less than two hours you'll be resubjected to the same mistreatment, and all the time knowing its a violation of the law. Knowing that the courts only move slow for you and that even if you could talk to a judge it wasn't very likely that the mistreatment would be ordered stopped soon enough to help.

To truly understand, to empathize with what happened to me you must see the videos made of those sessions from February 14 through February 28, 2009. I speak to my torturers and ask why its being done when its obvious it does not work and is doing me harm. Their answers will astound, sadden, sicken, and enrage you, and I hope move you to action against a system that has gone rogue.

Warren G. Lilly

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

How Stands The Court?

March 24, 2009

Warren G. Lilly, Jr.
DOC # 447655
DCI, P. O. Box 700
Waupun, WI 53963-0700

Judge A. P. Bissonnette
Dodge County Courthouse, Br. 3
210 West Center Street
Juneau, WI 53039

Re: Case No. 2007-CV-00392, WI DOC v. Lilly


On February 10, 2009 I put before the court a motion (Motion for an Order
Rescinding Lilly's Court Order Forced Feedings) asking it to rescind the order it issued allowing the DOC to force feed prisoners, in it I cited several reasons for requesting the motion. Today (March 23, 2009) I offer, by example, yet another reason for the Court to accept my motion and rescind its order allowing force feeding by the DOC. Three weeks ago (March 1, 2009) I asked the DCI Infirmary staff and management to provide me, as required, with a comb or pick suitable for my hair type. I was told that the Infirmary offered no such comb. I found this disturbing as, for the past fifteen to twenty years, more than half of the Infirmary's patients have been African-American.

As I've done at other prisons I informed the Unit Manager of WI Admin. Code Section 303.70(2)(b) which requires that prisoners in segregation status be given a [suitable] comb [or pick]. I first notified the Unit Manager, then the Security Director, and finally the Warden.

Today the Nursing Supervisor, Jim Hebel, came to my cage bearing a black plastic
pick. conspicuously marked with yellow paint "Unit 25". He gave me the pick then
informed me that it was intended to serve the entire Infirmary and that as other
African-American prisoners asked for the pick it would be "scheduled" out for use.

I cringe even to glimpse the cynical, hate filled mindset, the contempt for African-American prisoners which conceived the thought, "We'll buy one pick then let them all use it", then actually put that bigoted plan into effect. The Court must further consider that the group which conceived that shameful plan consisted of some combination of the Infirmary Unit Manager, the prison's Securi.ty Director, the Warden, and possibly a DOC OLC lawyer.

This, Sir, is a prime example of the bigoted and blighted nature of health care
services provided to African-Americans by the State's DOC HSUs. One pick to be
shared, scheduled out, among more than fifty African-American prisoners! The
very idea of sharing a comb under any conditions but especially in a hospital'
setting suggests a level of scorn that borders on depravity, a targeted contempt.

It is no wonder that, statistically, African-American prisoners who receive such
prison controlled health care have a higher mortality rate then the segment of the
free population that does not receive any or only emergency room health care.

The prison officials who masterminded this moronic, depraved, and insulting one-pick-for-all policy are the people, the mindset to whom the court's have abandoned their responsibilities for Americans behind the wall. One-pick-for-all is just the prison's latest dehumanizing policy. Yet, the State's lawyer's would plead with the courts for "deference" to such policies as "prison officials have the management experience and skills the courts lack".

What prison officials have is the court's tacit approval to maintain one of the last vestiges of institutionalized racism in America. And they do so with the court's blessings. I'm asking you, as the Court, to withdraw that approval, that blessing, by removing force feeding from the list of medical services the DOC HSUs can provide to prisoners. By their direct actions the DOC HSUs have repeatedly demonstrated their inability to manage the force feedings without degenerating them into either punishment or torture sessions. And indirectly, as typified by the one-pick-for-all policy, they have demonstrated a lack of responsibility, of human caring, or even medical propriety in their dealings with their given charges.

This Court must, I repeat must, begin to reshoulder its responsibilities to Americans behind the wall and do so by first rescinding its order allowing the DOC to force feed prisoners in its HSUs.

I've combed (picked) out my three weeks of matted hair and returned the "Unit 25"
pick to the Infirmary Unit Manager. I'll be damned if I'll participate in yet another planned indignity to prisoners.

How stands the Court?

Warren G. Lilly, Jr.


Gloria Thomas, Atty., WI DOC OLC
Tim Lundquist, DCI Warden
Rick Phillips, DCI Security Director
Fred Goetsch, DCI Infirmary Unit Manager

Friday, February 13, 2009

A Call to Arms from Starvin’ Naked Marvin: Now!

A Call to Arms from Starvin’ Naked Marvin: Now!

I’ve ranted against people who wait for the ‘right time’ to move against the forces of injustice. I’ve hammered away at them saying, waiting is the cowards way of putting off a necessary response to injustice. And now I find, I also have been waiting for the right time.

I’m shamed by that realization and act now to confront that shame. It seems I’ve been waiting to make a general call, a ‘call to arms’ for a mass hunger strike. I now end that wait by making the following call:

It’s time for us to realize that no one outside the wall is coming to our rescue, not a god, not a congress person, and not a lawyer. The rescue from years of interminable imprisonment lies within our very hands, our minds, our bodies.

This is a call for the strong, not the weak. By taking up this call you become, trite though it sounds, an army of one. No one can hunger strike with you. If you consider yourself to be weak or think that a hunger strike is a weapon of the weak then this is not a call to you. For it is only the strongest, only the most self sufficient who can continue in fear and loneliness, under threats of violence, violence, and isolation, to maintain their strike every day, every month, every year.

What must you do to become a hunger striker? First, read, understand, and accept the objectives and demands of this strike. Second, notify friends and family that you have joined this strike. Rid yourself of most of your possessions, you will not have access to them after your strike begins. Third, notify me and the prison (Warden & HSU) that you have joined this strike. Fourth, stop eating, stop wearing clothing, and non-violently refuse to follow any prison rules that do not serve your hunger strike.

You will of course be placed in the segregation unit and monitored. After you’ve refused to eat for three days a court order must be obtained to force feed you, the prison may wait longer.

Refuse to voluntarily submit to or walk to the forced feedings. Lay naked on your bed in the submission position: face down; on your stomach; hands crossed behind your back; legs crossed at the ankles; and your face turned toward the nearest wall, and DO NOT offer any physical resistance to the guards or the forced feeding procedure.

The forced feeding procedure is neither unbearable nor lengthy. In less than fifteen minutes you will be chained up, strapped into a restraint chair, intubated by passing a thin plastic tube through your nose into your stomach through which the food supplement will be poured, untubed, unstrapped from the chair, placed back on your bed and left in your cage. Stay wrapped in your sheets and blankets to maintain your warmth between feedings.

An admonishment: The objective of this strike is not your death, it is the destruction of the Wisconsin DOJ/DOC through the disruption of its daily activities, the exacerbation of its budgetary problems, and the embarrassment of the State of Wisconsin before the nation and the world, and the acceptance, by the State, of our demands. The strong understand that their death is a possibility, as it is in all wars for freedom and justice, but it is not the objective.

Our hunger strike is a necessary act of civil disobedience, it is an inherent right of Americans, who believe their government is acting in either a lawless or corrupt fashion, to protest those actions through civil disobedience. I assert that it is more than a right, it is a duty of Americans to stand in protest of government actions that abuse the laws and the lawmaking process for politically driven ends, and an affront to the humanity of its citizens, both of which are current maladies of the Wisconsin justice system.

This is a call for people who can maintain not ‘passive resistance’, but ‘passive aggression’ to confront and defeat an injustice that blemishes the very character of America and diminishes every person, be they prisoner, guard, or free person, that it touches.

The hunger strike in a prison environment must be passively pursued to present to the public a sympathetic face, countering its expectation of violence. Yet it must also be an aggressive attack on the budgets of each prison, the DOC, the DOJ, and ultimately the wallets of the Wisconsin taxpayer. each year the Wisconsin DOJ/DOC is forced to spend a minimum of $200,000 in staff overtime and administrative overhead to manage my hunger strike, it has no choice in the matter, hunger strikers must be force fed.

To reduce the burden of my strike upon any particular prison’s budget, I am moved every four to five months to another prison. To date I’ve been in eight separate prisons (RCI, DCI,RGCI,SCI,FLCI,JCI,NLCI,& WCI) and twice to two of them. No prison, after experiencing my strike, wants me back. Imagine the effect of numerous hunger strikers on the DOJ/DOC budget and the prison staffs. It is this picture of budgetary devastation and staffing nightmares that is the ‘aggressive’ in this passive aggressive hunger strike.

We must be honest with ourselves, public sympathy with our strike will not move the public to action, but the costs of such a massive strike will move the public and then the legislators to action. When we force that movement upon the public and the legislators we must be ready and unified to present our demands. And, as we will surely be kept separated we must go into this agreed upon those demands.

There are five demands I’ve been pushing since I began my strike four years ago, they are:

1. The release from prison of all Americans held for nonviolent social conflict, and the prohibition of the imprisonment of the nonviolent. It is both a moral and fiscal irresponsibility to imprison nonviolent Americans when community-based options would better serve the individual and the nation.

2. A constitutional limit on the number of Americans that can be held by any authority (federal, state, county, city) to 1 in 1250 per U.S. census count, and the planned quadrennially downward revision of this limit as a spur to improving the delivery of educational and social services.

3. A consolidation of state laws which govern imprisonment into national (non-federal) laws. We are a nation of people not a nation of states, the laws which govern our freedoms must be uniform in order to remove regional biases.

4. The prohibition of the practices of parole and probation. As imprisonment has a negligibly positive effect in changing the behavior of individuals even less is that behavior changed by parole and probation. They serve no purpose other than to extend imprisonment and to entrap those least likely to obey excessive restrictions on their freedoms.

5. The prohibition of the practice of disenfranchisement and the re-enfranchisement of all disenfranchised Americans. There must be an end to retribution, to perpetually punish an individual who has served time for a wrong done is a wrong in itself. The intrusion of government into an individual’s life should always be minimal and done to restore him to society not to permanently alienate him.

I now add a sixth demand to the list:

A base, a sea change in the philosophy of State and Federal government, a shift from politically centered to human centered laws by the adoption of the principles of Fiscally Responsible Humanism.

Fiscally Responsible Humanism

Fiscally Responsible Humanism is a philosophy of government that when applied to the creation of laws sets the enhancement of the values, capacities, and worth of its citizens as government’s primary law making goal, and requires that this goal be achieved in a fiscally responsible manner.

Laws created under this philosophy must pass through four filters:

1. It must make sense: The proposed law must be logically and morally sound, the reasoning supporting its implementation must be logically irrefutable, and its resulting effect morally consistent with the nation's ethical standards;

2. It must do no harm: No law passed must harm the individuals it will affect and especially it must do no harm to those indirectly affected who have no recourse, the focus of government must always be toward the enhancement of its citizens lives;

3. It must solve the problem: The law must do what it was designed to do, laws targeted to specific issues must effectively and narrowly address those issues and timely bring about a diminution of the problem, and;

4. It must be fiscally responsible: A cost versus benefit analysis must be part of every proposed law, that analysis must include: 1) the demographics of the affected population, 2) the cost to implement and enforce the law, 3) the cost of the projected custodial and/or rehabilitative services, and 4) a comparison of alternate, less expensive solutions.

I urge all hunger strikers to adopt, in their entirety, these six demands. It is through the adoption of these demands that even though we can not gather to fight this injustice yet we will be unified, as a powerful force, in our individual strikes.

Why do these demands select only the non violent for help? The answer is this, the public has less fear of the non violent and though public sympathy will never rise to a sufficient level to bring action in support of the non violent just for their sake, it will rise more readily, in support of releasing the non violent to remove the budgetary strain on the public wallet caused by a massive hunger strike for their release than it would if it feared the release of violent individuals.

Once we’ve successfully begun the process of prison population reduction, which consequentially reduces the power and influence of the prison industry, we can introduce the subject of the proper treatment of the violent, who now simply face lengthy confinement without adequate treatment for their release.

When I speak of releasing the non violent I do not mean that in every case, no supervision is warranted. I mean release from prison to be managed by community based programs which address the cause of the social conflict but keeps the individual in his/her community. Community based programs which provide continuing education, drug treatment, psychological services, out patient and in patient care, an/or public service have all proven more effective and less costly than imprisonment. Yet, Wisconsin, year after year, continues to waste tax dollars in this fruitless pursuit to punish citizens instead of increasing their value, capacity, and worth, in an effort to change their behavior. Wisconsin’s failure to correct its actions is based upon politically based nonsense taken to the ultimate harmful effect of the needless destruction of human lives.

Our army-of-one hunger strike will force Wisconsin to adopt community based programs for handling non violent social conflicts, and Fiscally Responsible Humanism in the production of its laws. Our success is inevitable as we, as strong individuals, are unstoppable by threats of force. For as we are passive, how can force be legally applied to stop us? And, as we are aggressively eating away at the DOJ/DOC budget, there, likewise is no response that can be applied to stop us. How then can we fail to succeed? The answer is that success is inevitable for the strong.

Large numbers of hunger strikers will not come forth nor does this campaign require large numbers to succeed. It requires you, as an individual, see the simplicity, the power, and the inevitability of the success of this method. I predict our numbers will be astounding but also predict that those who take up this call will see their sacrifice come to fruition.

One last prediction: This strike will spread past the borders of Wisconsin.

Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Jr. DOC # 447655, WCI is Starvin’ naked Marvin (SNM), and Chairman of the Campaign for Fiscally Responsible Humanism in Government

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Hunger Strike Continues

Hunger Strike Continues
by Warren Lilly #447655
New Lisbon Correctional

A friend of mine, upon hearing that I’d been maced and tazered by the guards at New Lisbon prison, urged me to “make them earn their pay” by continuing my hunger strike. I appreciate the support. I’ve refused prison food and authority for over four years and will not bow down, even to escalating violence.

However, something bothered me about my friend’s statement of support. That something was his unwillingness to “make them earn their pay.” During my four years of hunger striking I’ve met hundreds of prisoners who’ve stood behind my strike, way, way behind it. So far behind that they actually became invisible. I could still hear their distant and muffled shouts of “Go for it!”, but I just couldn’t see who was shouting it.

Such distant support makes it impossible t fight anything but a very lopsided war. One where the enemy, the Justice system, freely and purposely destroys our lives while we, the prisoners, just as freely give up our lives and freedoms.

We cower in the face of the imagined indestructibility of our enemy. We make it easy for our enemy to scorn, despise, and abuse us. We believe their propaganda that says we we are worthless and powerless, and that they have the right to control and waste our lives.

We fear to take even the riskless chances to fight for freedom and life or to assert our personhood. Less than a hundred of the twenty-two thousand prisoners answered my call to fast with me on Sundays then to send our moralless governor a letter demanding change.

To those who fasted I send my heartfelt thanks and ask you to continue fasting and recruit others. Hold a “fast-in” after the skipped meals to gather and write letters of support for the cause and protest of imprisonment to the governor.

To those who fear to fast, I ask what risk is there in forsaking a meal in support of a stand, or writing a letter of protest? We have let our fears conquer our personhood and rule our reason, and by doing so have abandoned life and liberty in favor of the false safety of cowardice.

I’m reminded of the time in my youth when people would say “when the revolution comes I’m gonna...” Well, the revolution never came because no one brought it forth. Now, like then, people sit and wait for others to blaze the trail so that they can travel it without sacrifice, without difficulty, without personal strife.

I waited forty years for the revolution to come. I let the world go from bad to worse, and now at nearly sixty years of age, the truth has dawned on me, a very simple truth: If it’s to be, it’s up to me.

“If it’s to be, it’s up to me”. So powerful a revelation in such a simple and yet painfully obvious truth. A god is not coming to save me or make right the wrongs of others, good is not about to spring from bad nor virtue from evil, and the only thing that will happen to those who treat me cruelly is that they will prosper upon my misery. Those are the lessons of life. Another lesson, a hope filled one, is that those who strive for justice and peace and freedom achieve it.

The revolution is here, the revolution is now, do something to sustain it, stand up for something. Begin by reading the letter to the governor and understanding this protest, then hold a “fast-in” and get those letters mailed. Find a non-violent way to “make them earn their pay”.

Stop buying the propaganda that your life is worthless, that you are powerless, and that they have the right to control and waste your life. Stop cowering before the paper tigers and giant shadows cast by imperious runts. Abandon your fears, be driven by the simple truth, “If it’s to be, it’s up to me”.

The Day After

Notes from Starvin’ Naked Marvin: The Day After

What does Barack Obama’s election mean for Black prisoners?
Very little and a great deal. Very little in that it’s unlikely he’ll make sweeping changes to the justice system. Obama was not elected on a platform for social change, he ran and won with an economic agenda and was supported by the same money ‘strokers’ that have supported every president. IF Blacks, especially those imprisoned, expect social change they’re going to be disappointed.

Obama’s election though, in a psychological sense, means a great deal to prisoners. Prisoners are quicker than free persons to believe they can not fight and win against an entrenched system and that color is an inherent bar to success. Obama has shown that the bar to success of Black men is mostly a bar of their own making, a self-imposed limit on how high they can climb.

Obama’s victory is a classic lesson in vision and persistence all prisoners should study, especially Black prisoners. For in that lesson is the means to overcome the horrors of both imprisonment and the justice system. His victory instructs us to first recognize our own worth and to respect the worth of others, then to establish a goal and pursue it through planning and preparation, and finally, most importantly, to embrace a single-minded focus toward achieving that goal.

Obama’s victory has shown us that even ‘blue sky’ is not limited to one who’s determined to achieve a goal. How then can we, given his example, fail to take on and defeat the problems of injustice and imprisonment we face?

Let me propose a goal for all prisoners: The reduction and reformation of the prison system into a more human-centered service through the non-violent destabilization of the current dehumanizing system. Prisons operate efficiently and effectively because we prisoners allow them to do so. Without our support, mentally by obeying orders, and physically by working in prisons, the prison system, as it now stands, would collapse. This is a fact we’ve known but have been afraid to exploit.

To achieve this goal we must first set aside our fear. Fear is the mind killer, it prevents self defense. For unless you are willing to abandon your fears and risk everything you stand to gain nothing. Ask yourself if your life has value and worth not just to you but also those with whom you interact - your family, your friends. If you answer is yes then you must vigorously defend your life from the ravages of a system which as declared your life worthless.

Since, to this system, you’re only a body give them that body without its mind. Do not perform any function or obey any order which supports the orderly running of any prison. Non-violently refuse to be an intelligent but willing victim of a rogue system. Refuse to accept their pronouncement of you as worthless. Make them work like hell to maintain you and this system.

In this country we’ve allowed morality and conscience to be replacement with bad laws. To obey such law is to deny your humanity and the responsibility you bear, as an American , to raise protest in the face of injustice.

Look to President-Elect Obama as your inspiration towards this goal. It only seems like ‘blue sky’ because we fear to fight for our worth.

Warren G. Lilly, Jr.,, pen name Starvin’ Naked Marvin, has been hunger striking for over four years in protest of Wisconsin’s and America’s abusive overuse of imprisonment. He refuses to eat, wear clothing, and obey orders, and is force fed thrice daily, Monday through Saturday. Warren asks prisoners and free persons to fast with him every Sunday then to e-mail or write to their Governor in support of his protest.

Contact Warren at: Warren G. Lilly, Jr.
DOC # 447655
WCI, P.O. Box 351
Waupun, WI 53963-0351

Presidential Pardon request

Warren G. Lilly, Jr.
DOC # 447655
NLCI, P.O. Box 4000
New Lisbon, WI 53950

President George Bush
White House
Washington D.C.

Open request for Presidential pardon and executive order

Dear Mr. President,

I am Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Jr., further information pertinent to who I am, that explains my situation and stance, is appended to this request. I come to you as a supplicant in the name of destitute Americans who need your help, and as, I believe, an accurate and a timely indicator of this nation’s need for the healing gesture I’m soliciting.

What I’m asking and why

At the end of each president’s term in office comes a time of reflection when he considers the impact of his presidency on America. Traditionally this has been the time when Presidents looked to closing the rifts and healing the wounds of the nation.

One way Presidents have done this was to issue pardons to Americans who have been imprisoned but the circumstances of their situation cry out for redress. I write this letter to implore you to continue this tradition and to take it a step beyond what your predecessors have done. I am asking you to release from prison, by Presidential pardon, all Americans imprisoned for nonviolent social conflicts, and to issue an executive order removing the use of federal funds for the imprisonment of nonviolent Americans.

America’s justice system has come to reflect not the best aspects of our nation’s character but its worst. It is one of the last hold outs of institutionalized racism and classism. It boasts racially biased statistics that should any other country have produced them would result in America’s cries for actions against it. Yet when those same statistics come before state and federal congresses silence punctuated by halfhearted rumblings is their only response to them.

Fear of the appearance of being soft on crime prevents law makers from acknowledging the reality that the current laws and their targeted application have definite immoral and un-American biases and tend to victimize those least capable of defending themselves against unjust laws.

As a statistical example consider that the prison population of Wisconsin, a state with a Black population of less than six percent and a white population of around ninety percent, consist of fifty percent black prisoners and only forty-five percent white. Statistically, this implies that Wisconsin blacks are sixteen (16) times more criminal than its whites, and when just the age group eighteen to thirty is considered that comparison goes up to twenty (20) times more criminal. Only the impact of racism in Wisconsin’s justice system accurately explains this statistical improbability - a holocaustic misapplication of law.

Yet Wisconsin is not atypical among the states. Across this country similarly biased statistics can be gleaned from the so-called application of justice against the minorities, the mentally ill, and the illiterate.

Most distressing is the increasing application of imprisonment for nonviolent social conflicts especially when the rate of violent social conflicts, since the early eighties, has been decreasing. At a time when America should have been decreasing its prison population it, instead, turned to the nonviolent to continue the pernicious growth of its prison industry.

Why the pardon and edict should be issued.

America, which proudly boasts of the freedoms of its people, has the distinct dishonor of being the world’s largest imprisoner of its citizens. At only five percent (5%) of the world’s population, America holds twenty-five percent (25%) of the world’s prisoners, no so-called rogue state comes near that shameful statistic.

Some estimates hold that seventy to eighty percent of those imprisoned are nonviolent. What then is the basis upon which we project our vaunted respect for individual freedoms when in no other country are the nonviolent more likely to be imprisoned?

American politics has hoisted itself upon the petard of being ‘tough on crime’, a politically defined moral stand that has inevitably lead to an intractable and socially devastating position. It is now impossible for those who realize the tragic error of that stance to make public their retraction as fear mongers await to paint them as ‘soft on crime’.

A pardon and executive order would remove that self-imposed yoke and give voice to those who wish to end the current Draconian laws and replace imprisonment with fiscally responsible humanistic alternatives. It would remove the fear of doing right by legislators who’ve long since recognized the wrong, the societal harm of abusive over imprisonment. It wold begin to untie the hands of judges who have no tool except imprisonment to deal with social conflicts. It would end the growth of a prison system that has proven to be both ineffective and destructive to the moral, social, and economic well-being of this nation.

The justice system cannot correct itself, it has lost sight of its purpose, there is no humanity within it from which the impetus for reform can spring. Without a drastic reduction it can no longer be controlled to meet the needs of a progressive, human-centered society. Its politically tainted existence mocks America’s claim of respect for individual rights and freedoms, reflects the inner darkness of American politics, and highlights America’s resistance to purge from within itself the very systemic horrors over which it has fought wars against other nations.

By issuing the pardon and executive order you give America the beginnings of a chance to clear the ground and buildup a justice system that reflects the cultural and social, not the politically driven, needs of America, and you free Americans from the shackles of 17th century practices against the needs of a 21st century society.

Historical Precedents

There are precedents which support the scope of the pardon and executive order I’m requesting: Presidents, congress, and governors have used pardons, amnesties, clemencies and other acts to heal and to advance the nation past its troubled times, even when the nation itself was ambivalent toward, reticent to , or unmindful of the need for the act.

After the Civil War, despite the fact that the Confederacy had taken up arms against the nation, the confederate soldiers were pardoned because a healing gesture was needed to make the nation whole. Likewise after the Vietnam War American draft dodgers, who’d fled the country rather than fight its war, were offered a conditional amnesty which allowed them to come home from self-imposed exile.

Even a former president has benefited from the need of the nation to be healed of a socially dividing and morally conflicting trauma. President Gerald Ford’s pardon of Richard Nixon for his violation of the public trust was necessary to prevent the possible destruction of the nation’s executive body that could have been caused by a long and detailed trial. The nation benefited far more by that pardon than did Mr. Nixon.

Governors also have acted to heal wounds inflicted upon citizens by unjust laws. A case in point is ex-governor Ryan’s stay of all executions in Illinois to prevent the continuation of the application of an unconscionable racial bias in his state’s death penalty. His action saved the lives of many wrongly sentenced to death, and precipitated the beginning of a closing of the rift between the races and the laws presumed to apply equally to all.

One more precedent, though I admit it’s far of field, is the world changing actions of former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev. In responding to then President Ronald Reagan’s call to “tear down that wall” by tearing down the Berlin Wall, and later, of his own accord, implementing the policies of Perestroika and Glasnost, Premier Gorbachev acted to heal the world of its Cold War aches and pains, and by doing so achieved a noteworthy place in history.

Judgment of History

The people who now suffer imprisonment under America’s misguided and politically motivated fear of social conflict must, like the Confederate soldiers and the draft dodgers of the Vietnam era, be forgiven for their transgressions against the nation in order to allow America to be healed of the greater transgression against citizens by a politically fueled justice system.

I call upon you Mr. Bush to echo Mr. Gorbachev’s global healing gesture by tearing down the walls of imprisonment which separate the hundreds of thousands of nonviolent citizens from even the possibility of recovery or rehabilitation. Such a gesture, by its very nature, would cause a new age in America to pivot around your presidency.

When history judges you what will it choose as your crowning moment, your glowing achievement? Let it be the human moment when you reached out to heal the nation of an old, deep, and festering wound caused by the biased and misguided misapplication of justice. Let it be your achievement in making it possible for legislators and judges, across the country, to remove injustice from the backs of those least capable of defending themselves and of restoring to them their human and civil rights, and the blessings of liberty. Let it not be for the opportunity you missed to set America firmly upon a humanistic and progressive path.

Do for the states what political fears will not allow them to do for themselves, what humanity cries out for, give them the way, the opportunity, the moral platform from which they may rescind the established injustices of our current system.

End the nation’s unconscionable waste of the lives of hundreds of thousands , if not millions, of nonviolent Americans. End the collateral damage that this waste imposes upon their loved ones, and end the violation of the government’s duty to enhance the lives of all its citizens.

Make the gesture Mr. Bush for as with Mr. Nixon’s pardon it will be the nation that benefits far more than any prisoner. I implore you to close the rift, heal the wound, wipe the slate, tear down those walls.

With respect and in hope,

Warren G. Lilly. Jr.

cc: To those whom it does concern


Biography of Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Jr.

Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Jr. Is the son of Warren Gamaliel Lilly, Sr. and Carrie Louise Dixon Lilly Akins. He was born in Birmingham, Alabama on January 16, 1951. His family consists of five brothers, five sisters, two daughters, and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He served in the U.S. Air Force, has a Bachelor’s degree in Physics and Computer Science, and credits towards his Masters in Computer Science. For nearly twenty years he was the sole proprietor of Lilly Consulting and System Services in Milwaukee, WIsconsin.

He is a secular humanist who believes that the humanity of a person arises not from externally applied laws but from intrinsic values universally shared by all people, and that the primary duty of government is to enhance the value, capacity and worth of all its citizens.

Since 2003 he has been imprisoned on a domestic violence charge, and since 2004 he has been hunger striking to protest his illegal imprisonment and the abusive overuse of imprisonment, particularly as it has been applied to nonviolent Americans. In protest he does not eat, wear clothing or recognize the authority of the state to hold him without fair trial. He is chained and force-fed thrice daily Monday through Saturday.

Warren Lilly’s hunger strike objectives

The five objectives of his hunger strike are:

1. The release from prison of all Americans held for nonviolent social conflict, and the prohibition of the imprisonment of the nonviolent. It is both a moral and fiscal irresponsibility to imprison nonviolent Americans when community-based options would better serve the individual and the nation.

2. A constitutional limit on the number of Americans that can be held by any authority (federal, state, county, city) to 1 in 1250 per U.S. census count, and the planned quadrennially downward revision of this limit as a spur to improving the delivery of educational and social services.

3. A consolidation of state laws which govern imprisonment into national (non-federal) laws. We are a nation of people not a nation of states, the laws which govern our freedoms must be uniform in order to remove regional biases.

4. The prohibition of the practices of parole and probation. As imprisonment has a negligibly positive effect in changing the behavior of individuals even less is that behavior changed by parole and probation. They serve no purpose other than to extend imprisonment and to entrap those least likely to obey excessive restrictions on their freedoms.

5. The prohibition of the practice of disenfranchisement and the re-enfranchisement of all disenfranchised Americans. There must be an end to retribution, to perpetually punish an individual who has served time for a wrong done is a wrong in itself. The intrusion of government into an individual’s life should always be minimal and done to restore him to society not to permanently alienate him.

Fiscally Responsible Humanism

Fiscally Responsible Humanism is a philosophy of government that when applied to the creation of laws sets the enhancement of the values, capacities, and worth of its citizens as government’s primary law making goal, and requires that this goal be achieved in a fiscally responsible manner.

Laws created under this philosophy must pass through four filters:

1. It must make sense: The proposed law must be logically and morally sound, the reasoning supporting its implementation must be logically irrefutable, and its resulting effect morally consistent with the nation's ethical standards;

2. It must do no harm: No law passed must harm the individuals it will affect and especially it must do no harm to those indirectly affected who have no recourse, the focus of government must always be toward the enhancement of its citizens lives;

3. It must solve the problem: The law must do what it was designed to do, laws targeted to specific issues must effectively and narrowly address those issues and timely bring about a diminution of the problem, and;

4. It must be fiscally responsible: A cost versus benefit analysis must be part of every proposed law, that analysis must include: 1) the demographics of the affected population, 2) the cost to implement and enforce the law, 3) the cost of the projected custodial and/or rehabilitative services, and 4) a comparison of alternate, less expensive solutions.