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Prisoners In New York Are Not Happy They Won’t Be Allowed To See The April 8th Eclipse

eclipse behind prison bars
eclipse behind prison bars

It seems like almost everyone is excited about this upcoming total solar eclipse. Thousands of people are planning on traveling to various locations just to get a better look at it. (Hopefully with the proper eye wear and not some knockoff.)

Heck, even people locked up in prison are looking forward to seeing it.

What’s that? They won’t be able to in the state of New York?

That’s right. If you are incarcerated in the prison system in New York another one of your punishments is that you will have to wait until the year 2045 if you want to see a total solar eclipse.

According to NBC New York, the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) has stated that 23 facilities “will experience total darkness ranging from approximately one and a half minutes to approximately three and a half minutes.”

Because of that, all of those prisons will be in a “system-wide lockdown” during that time “as a safety precaution.”

NBC New York also reports that a memo issued by the DOCCS stated that every person in its custody will be locked in their housing units between 2-5 p.m. on April 8.

That is, unless the total solar eclipse is some sort of religious experience for you.

Which, apparently it is for Jeremy Zielinski, an inmate at Woodbourne Correctional Facility.

In an interview with Hell Gate, Zielinski’s request to mark the day as a religious event was approved.

So now he will be able to watch the eclipse from the prison yard and the prison will even provide him with cardboard eclipse glasses.

“To be able to put aside our differences and just enjoy something together is really, really important,” said Zielinski. “There’s not that many opportunities to do it, especially in a place like this. When you have an opportunity like that, it’s a shame to waste it.”

Naturally, upon hearing this news, now numerous other inmates at Woodbourne Correctional Facility are also claiming they should be able to see the eclipse for their own religious reasons.

But wait… DOCCS Acting Commissioner Daniel Martuscello III put the kibosh on all of that with the memo about the lockdown. Or did he?

In the memo, in addition to saying that every prisoner will be kept in their housing unit during the eclipse, the DOCCS “has placed an order to purchase and distribute solar eclipse safety glasses to facilities in the path of totality for the incarcerated population.”

If that sounds confusing, that’s because it is.

When Hell Gate asked how prisoners locked in their cells were going to be able to view the eclipse, a DOCCS spokesperson “regurgitated most of Martuscello’s memo and didn’t address the question.”

Now, it appears, Zielinski will be the only prisoner in the entire system that will get to see it from the prison yard. All of those other “religious” requests are reportedly still “under review.”

“I don’t believe that just because I am incarcerated that I should be denied this opportunity, especially when this eclipse is scheduled to happen during normal outside recreation time,” said Woodbourne inmate David Haigh. “Even for a non-religious person, this eclipse could hold some sort of special meaning.”

Or it could just break the simulation we’re all living in and he and the other prisoners will be set free.

So be careful out there.

The post Prisoners In New York Are Not Happy They Won’t Be Allowed To See The April 8th Eclipse appeared first on BroBible.


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