Clueless in Seattle – that would be any of the people I spoke with
today on the phone or in person at SeaTac Detention; when asked why is
it that two days ago an 83 year old man was ordered to navigate his
own way via public transportation from their facility to one of their
houses in Tacoma, then in less than 24 hours be hauled back to Seattle
by Federal Marshals in chains and leg irons and then put in Solitary
Confinement! No one knows anything, just doing their jobs.
What dreadful thing has he done! Well now we all can rest better
tonight knowing that once again, our Federal Marshals and prison
guards have the dangerous Stephen Kelly and Bill Bichsel safely locked
up in 5’ x 10’ boxes.
Someone correct me if I am wrong here; but, has Steve and Bix, as
members of the California and Oregon Provinces of the Society of Jesus
in effect just formed a Jesuit Community at the Special Housing Unit
(SHU), aka, protective custody, solitary confinement, the hole, at the
Seattle/Tacoma Federal Corrections Center? Is this a first?
Susan Crane just happened to call and when I told her what just
occurred, she quipped – “There was once 2 Jesuits who lived in the
SHU, they had so many ideas of Resistance – they didn’t know what to
do” – beautiful!
I suspect, like Lynne Greenwald’s experience in August, this whole
thing was orchestrated by BOP for their own sadistic reasons. I for
one don’t have the need to ponder the Klingon mind.
A dear friend of ours, Joe Fortier, S.J., from Eastern Washington
summed up what is happening here much better than I ever could. Joe
writes.. “I work with the Indian People, and this sounds all too
familiar. (Yes, I passed the fill-in-the-blank test). Repeat
“offenders” are dirt to BOP establishment goons. You’re no longer a
person. Especially if you’re poor and/or a minority; Or in cohoots
with the poor. Bix , Susan and Steve will certainly be in our Keller/
Inchelium community’s’ prayers. Peace in the
Kingdom of Danger and Risk, Joe
I suspect, much like Steve, Bix is presently in full non compliance –
meaning he might not use the phone or take visitors and it may be some
time before he can write to us. Thing is – though they may not be able
to see each other, they are together, and I feel certain the Spirit
they are sharing is life giving to each of them.
Best support we can provide is to write and shower them with our
thoughts and affections.
Our brother, John Dear dropped me a note reminding us that Steve’s
birthday is on the 15th. It would be wonderful for anyone who can to
send a birthday card to Steve on this, I believe, his 63rd year. Makes
no difference if it gets there late, anytime in the next week would be
Steve and Bix were originally together at SeaTac during April of 2011.
After Bix was sent to Tennessee, shortly afterwords Steve chose the
route of non cooperation and has remained in the SHU ever since. He
was sentenced to 15 months in prison.
Stephen Kelly, S.J.
# 00816-111 SHU
P.O. Box 13900
Seattle, WA 98198 – 1090
Bix’s address is slightly different than it was previously.
William J. Bichsel, S.J
# 86275-020 SHU
P.O. Box 13900
Seattle, WA 98198 – 1090
Susan was sent to Dublin California and remains their today. She, an
aspiring poet, while maintaining all of her mental faculties, is not
confined to the SHU. Like Steve, Susan was also sentenced to 15 months
in prison, she can be written to at:
5701 8th St. Camp Parks
Dublin, CA 94568
Also: If you are in the area – this weekend on the 14th and 16th,
Ground Zero Center for Nonviolent Action will be hosting activities
and actions in honor of Martin Luther King Jr.
Then on Sunday evening at 6:30 PM we will be celebrating a Festival of
Hope at St. Leo Church, in honor of Steve, Susan and Bix.
You can find lots of good information on these events at:
[Editor's note: Click Here for full information about all the Ground Zero events.]