Open Letter to Michael Moore

By Kay Lee

Dear Michael Moore,

I was surprised to read that, after all your cold-hearted budget cuts and painful reorganization efforts, the auditors say you haven't saved the DOC any money. I mean, I personally know the prisoners are eating less and worse; getting less medical care from fewer medical staff for more disease; the ventilation systems are down most of the time, and the entire Florida prison system is wobbling along on a shoestring.

I knew you had lost the support of your staff as well as the prisoners and public long ago. But this blow to your efforts must be very hard to bear. You are now in an extremely hostile state and everyone knows you want out.

It's a bad spot to stand in. But I have some suggestions for how you can gain the support of the people and your employees, and wind up being a hero in Florida.

You can be one of the first in the nation to recognise that our prisons have to be places of healing if the public is going to be safe. You can begin the change.

You can help us weed out the dishonest employees. In fact, I'd say that you'll never show a dramatic cut in costs until you fire or reprimand those who are stealing the state blind, from wardens all the way down.

You can quit assuming all the guards are truthful and that prisoners, families, dead and ex-employees and supporters like me are all liars because the guards say so. You can begin to really listen to the stories that are being sent to you and do something about them. We are handing you many names on tarnished platters. You have the power to force honest investigations, to do unexpected tours, and send good people to talk to the abused inmates and families You can really push to find the truth within the ranks.

You can talk to the employees that deserve Gold Stars and find out how things could be changed to improve Florida's prisons so that we aren't such a shocking debacle.

Then, when you have the bad employees either gone or being rehabilitated/retrained, you can begin to reward the staff for doing a proper job.

It will probably make the legislators want to help you get out of the state at first, which you wanted anyway. But then again, I don't think anyone realizes how much the bad employees are draining off the system. You might find the savings the auditor couldn't.

This new and novel approach could make you a hero, a leader, an example for the nation, loved by staff and public alike. Either way, you can't lose.

Then Michael, when you have made your heroic effort, we will fight for you and your ideas as strongly as we have fought against you in the past.

I am visualizing your enlightenment and sending you strength.

Kay Lee


TRUE DEMOCRACY Summer 2002 Copyright © 2002 by News Source, inc.