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It's The Prisons

ID Number: 11473
Maker: Critical Resistance; Freedom Winter; Inkworks
Technique: offset
Date Made: 2000
Place Made: United States: California, Berkeley
Measurements: 28 cm x 43 cm; 11 in x 16 15/16 in
Main Subject: Education; Prisons & Prisoners
Materials: paper (fiber product)
Digitized: Y

Full Text:
Why Does California Rank 41st In The Nation In Education Spending? It's The Prisons. No On 21 No On 21 Freedom Winter & Critical Resistance (510) 444-0484 www.prisons.org/freedomwinter


Acquisition Number: 2000-043

Copyright Status:
Under copyright; used by CSPG for educational and research purposes only. Distribution or reproduction beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners.


Exhibition Annotation:
Poster design based on the popular orange-and-black “It’s the Cheese” advertisements promoting California cheeses. California Proposition 21, known also as Prop 21, was the largest crime-related measure in California history. Passed in March 2000, it increased a variety of criminal penalties for crimes committed by youth and incorporated many youth offenders into the adult criminal justice system. The No on Prop 21 movement opposed spending millions of dollars trying juveniles as adults and locking them up in adult facilities while underfunding education. The proposition received considerable controversy and was subject to vigorous protests by youth and human rights groups, but was eventually passed by 62% of the voters. Prop 21 was funded by Governor Pete Wilson, Republican (1991-1999), Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E), Chevron, TransAmerica, Atlantic Richfield, San Diego Gas and Electric, and the Union Oil Company of California. At least one of these companies, Chevron, is known to employ prison labor (no benefits, no workplace rights, below minimum wage salaries). The California Prison Guards Union gave $2,000,000 to Governor Gray Davis, Democrat (1999-2003), for his 1998 campaign. Since Prop 21, thousands of youth have been transferred into adult court regardless of the circumstances of their cases. It also expanded the number of crimes designated as violent and serious felonies, subjecting youth to longer sentences—often life sentences. Proposition 21 is not limited to violent crime. It turns low-level vandalism into a felony. It requires alleged gang offenders, with misdemeanors like stealing candy, to serve six months in jail. In February 2001, state Court of Appeal in San Diego invalidated provisions of the law requiring 14 to 17-year-olds to be tried in the adult courts.



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