325

‘Prisons During Struggle for Power’ by ABC Istanbul (Turkey)

As the conditions behind walls get better, existence of walls become blurred.

Courts,
Defences,
Choices,
Signatures…

Democracy’s power that cause to forget, is the hush-money that it recognises.

There is no difference between democracy and coup, military and police, barracks and parliament, king and president. State can be dictator, king and sultan without losing the quality of being democracy.

In the day of 15th July, a group of soldiers started a struggle for power in some strategic points that is seen by some as coup, and by others as theatre. As always, people who face this struggle for power in its most bare state are the prisoners. In this struggle for power, all communication of prisoners with outside has been cut. It is informed that releases will not be made until a second order.

Whether there is a coup, who did this coup, who opposes this coup are not the questions that needed to be asked in our opinion. Coup is always implicit to state. Every state practice in daily life, especially a non-ending coup setting on political subjects that state see as opponents, is a state of emergency. Because what makes sovereignty is its ability to decide the state of exception.

If some factions are excluded, passed decisions on, whether these decisions are taken by so-called consensus or covered up by using another name does not change anything.

The sovereign is the one who decides when the public order is disrupted, on security, on death and life. The sovereign decides what is crime and not, who is criminal and how one pays for the crime. It makes people internalise its system to an extent that, lots of people who believe in the necessity of the prison can’t imagine abolishing the place that they don’t what to be in while criticising it. While they see a threat to themselves, they approve prison, but when they are attacked by power they start to see prisons as power’s institutions to protect itself. Yet, while political power changes state institutions remain, changing power means changing criminals. Yesterday’s heroes can be today’s traitors, owners of a right to kill can change in an instant.

People who have not yet faced power’s apparatus of closure, do not ever think about how the existence of prisons continues in the days that will come, what the absolute power that decides the communication between in and out can do. While the laws that the state enforces change, it is obvious that the existence of the state will remain.

For a democratic sultanate, it is not necessary to have more than one person. And in whatever way it is called, people who entirely or partly lose their rights and are kept away from political power still have lived under the roof of democracy.

Prison reformists forget one thing, and that is walls will remain and behind walls, state with its unlimited authority just can do anything in any moment. This reality does not change with an increased amount of books, increased visiting times, and uncensored letters.

This reality will exist as long as walls exist, guardians of state exist, weapons of gendermeries exist, that is to say as long as the state exists. Hearings, reduced sentences, changes in laws do not change this reality. This is a change in the roles and lines of theatre, yet theatre continues to exist.

Concepts like rights, laws are tied to sovereign’s will and can change in any instant. What makes a sovereign is the power of putting these concepts into power, keeping their existence and deciding their content. Sovereignty with its changing tactics, sometimes enlarges the aquarium, causing those to forget the greater reality with its small rewards.

A democracy can continue to exist in militarist or pacifist forms, authoritarian or liberal, secular or conservative, without ever making concessions on its functioning. That’s why although it seems pretty libertarian, democracy is like an empty bell-glass that turns into any colour that it takes within.

As the conditions behind walls get better, existence of walls become blurred.

Courts,
Defences,
Choices,
Signatures…

Democracy’s power that cause to forget, is the hush-money that it recognises.

ABC İSTANBUL

Tags: , ,

This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 19th, 2016 at 11:51 am and is filed under Prison Struggle.