I was recently reading an InTouch article about Real Housewives of New Jersey star, Teresa Guidice being attacked in the Federal Prison Camp in Danbury.
The article stated that Teresa had been beaten senseless for being famous and was on suicide watch because she was having a hard time enduring the humiliating strip searches, cruel taunts and excessive toilet cleaning.
While I feel bad for what Teresa is going through, I find the article a bit strange.
Maybe it happened, but I don't believe it and here's why. No one is really beaten up in a Federal Prison Camp (and for those who will be self-surrendering to a camp, please don't be afraid).
Being in a camp is a special privilege reserved for inmates with a low-security classification. Most camp eligible inmates are there for non-violent drug or money related crimes. They are not prone to violence and fighting rarely occurs.
If you get in a fight in camp, you get a "shot" (disciplinary action). The consequences of this shot are that you lose your camp status and are sent to a high security Federal Correctional Institute (FCI).
All camp inmates want to remain camp inmates because of the freedom afforded by being in a camp. And they don't want to go to an FCI with the more violent offenders. So no one is going to risk their camp status by starting a fight. Violence in a camp is almost non-existent
As I write this, I am sitting inside the low-medium FCI in Dublin, CA. This prison is comprised of about 80% gang members and a number of violent inmates including many murderers.
I started my prison bid in the Victorville, CA camp, however, I was transferred to Dublin for a special program they don't offer at camp.
As a high profile inmate, one in a much more dangerous prison then a camp, I have had no problems with violence. Do not get me wrong, many of the inmates know who I am and I have been tested a few times. Each time I firmly stand my ground and react in a calm, cool and collected manner.
When I first arrived here, a rather large inmate came up to me in the Cafeteria and told me she heard I was the Manhattan Madam. She got in my face, much too close for comfort, and informed me that I don't look very much like some "badass Madam."
My response was not to back down, look her dead in the eye and say "Well, looks can be deceiving... can't they? Yes I was known as the Manhattan Madam, however, I prefer to be called Kristin and I am really just an inmate like everyone else." And then I asked her name and told her it was nice to meet her. She started laughing and told me I was one cool white girl. And that was the end of that.
I had a couple of other similar situations and responded the same way.
One of the main lessons of prison is humility.
I am just an inmate like everyone else. I wear the same brown khaki uniform, eat the same awful food, have the same monthly phone minutes and spending limits -- just like everyone else here.
I do not walk around this complex thinking I am better then anyone else because I'm not. I am just another inmate.
I treat everyone here with kindness and respect because that is the way I want to be treated in return.
Sure, not everyone here operates that way. Many of the women here are rude, disrespectful and have bad attitudes.But their attitudes are not my problem. My attitude is.
And that is the only thing I can control in this awful place.
I cannot control the degrading strip searches, abuse by staff members, forced programming or job duties or any of the other endless humiliating things I must endure.
But I can surely control my reaction to those things and remain positive and respectful of the situation.
This is a situation I put myself in. I got myself here. And these things are reminders that I don't want to ever come back to this place.
If Teresa was attacked in a camp where violence is a rarity it is because of her attitude, not her fame.
I highly suggest she take a note from my playbook and learn how to be humble and treat the other inmates with respect.
If you don't want to get punk'd in prison then show them you are not a punk.