Prisoners of the lost universe sex
” Doctors at New York’s Elmira Reformatory took a more hands-on approach: They chloroformed masturbators and implanted metal rings through their foreskins. prison sex policies took a swing to the permissive, when the nation’s first conjugal visitation program opened at Mississippi State Penitentiary at Parchman in 1918.
century thanks to the triumph of germ theory and a dawning awareness that microbes like the syphilis spirochete caused disease, not the squandering of bodily fluids. Informed by racist beliefs common to the era, the program initially served only black inmates and was designed in part to suppress aggression by letting the prisoners vent their purportedly immense sexual energies. grew more punitive in the ’70s with the emergence of the “victims’ rights” movement and the reinstatement of the death penalty.
In 1992, Otis Rodgers filed suit against the Ohio Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation claiming that its policy against masturbation and conjugal visits infringed on his human rights.
The snarkosphere had a good laugh last summer when an inmate at a Michigan jail sued the state for depriving him of pornography in spite of his professed “chronic masturbation syndrome.” The case was dismissed in August because the plaintiff, 22-year-old Kyle Richards, a convicted bank robber who got busted after police followed a trail of cash through the snow to his apartment, did not pay a 0 filing fee.
But last month Richards pressed his case further, filing a new suit against a Detroit Fox television station for mocking his masturbatory condition with “degrading and slanderous” coverage.
Tennessee forbids “[a]ny behavior intended for the sexual gratification of the subject.” Ohio prohibits “[s]eductive or obscene acts, including indecent exposure or masturbation.” Kentucky regards inmate masturbation as “[i]nappropriate sexual behavior.” In California, where some 170,000 men and women live behind bars, masturbation is permissible provided it is stopped immediately if noticed by staff, blue balls be damned.
If the masturbator perseveres, even if concealed by bed sheets, he can be cited for “Intentionally Sustained Masturbation without Exposure.” These policies are part of a long correctional tradition to forbid all forms of sexual activity.
Among men, well-educated prisoners were more likely to be frequent masturbators.