You’ll Be the Only One Keeping it Real

By, Prisoner Correspondent

This ain’t what you want.  Do not come here.  I know men doing 25 to 50 years for keeping it real.  I’m with guys on their 37th year, 21st year locked down in this bitch with 10 to 20 years left to complete.  I see men sentenced to die in this hell hole for keeping it real.  A young dude shot another guy for beating on his sister.  His own sister came to testify against him at trial.  He’s locked up and she’s still out there with the guy who was beating her ass.  She actually told on her own brother, now he is in here for keeping it real!  I got a little cousin who decides to rob a dope dealer with three of his homeboys.  They didn’t find the dope or the money and end up killing the dope dealer.  Somebody snitched so they all get picked up.  Once they’re at the police department, the three homeboys give statements on my cousin, but he remains silent and doesn’t tell on nobody.  He was the only one keeping it real.  And what’s the prize for keeping it real?  He got life in prison.  His three homeboys testified on him in court for lighter sentences.  I know men who have taken the weight for the crime allowing their friends to walk, to avoid prison time.

          So what do those friends do?  Well they don’t write him or send money.  They try to fuck his woman or his sister.  They keep his dope and his cars without paying him for it.  They don’t honor their debts nor do they honor the friendship.  What happened to “death before dishonor?”  What happened to “honor amongst thieves?”  What happened to “the code of the streets?”  You’ll be the only one keeping it real.    And in prison you’ll need money.  You’ll need deodorant, toothpaste, soap, a comb, brush or pick.  You’ll need gel, hair grease, or lotion.  You’ll need beard trimmers and a t.v.  You’ll need jogging suits, boots, and gym shoes, and you’ll need a footlocker to protect and lock up all your shit.  What about food?  The prison will not feed you enough.  You’ll need oatmeal, peanut butter, bread, noodles, cakes, cookies, and chips.  You’ll wanna talk on the phone.  You’ll wanna reach out and maintain relationships with your kids, your moms and your girl.  Who’ll pay for the high priced calls?  $3 to $4 for a 15 minute call.  $8 to $10 for 30 minutes on the phone.  Who’ll visit?  Who’ll drive 3 to 6 hours to see you?  Where’s the love gonna come from?  Who’s gonna keep it real and hold you down for 6 to 7 years, 10 to 20 years straight?  Who’s gonna love your woman, who’s gonna touch your woman for the next two weeks not to mention the the next 2 to 5 years?  Who’s gonna teach your son or little brother?  Who’s gonna raise them right?

          And the betrayal don’t stop once you get in here.  You can clique up and find your hood, your set, your fam, your nation, your gang, or your crew in here.  And they will embrace you.  And they will use you because you are brand new to the system.  You might keep it real and stash a knife for somebody or sell some weed.  You might smoke and drink some prison wine.  You might stick somebody.  You might jump somebody.  But what happens when you put somebody in critical condition or you break his jaw or stab his eye out?  What happens if he dies?  That’s a brand new fucking case, more time.  Is everybody keeping it real?  Are you sure nobody in your crew will tell on you to get time taken off their sentence?  Are you sure they won’t tell on you to get parole?  Are you sure that hard ass dude you stabbed won’t turn bitch and snitch on you?  Who’ll pay the restitution?  The prison will take your money out of your prisoner account to pay for the medical bill of the victim.  You will pay for every stitch, every bandage, every pill, every mile in the ambulance, and every day he spends in the hospital.  All of that comes from your account.  So you will not be able to buy anything from the store, and you can’t order anything until that entire medical bill is paid.  This is not what you want.  Do not come here.  Your gang or crew will turn on you.  Someone may be ordered to stab you to get rid of their gambling debt and somebody in your crew will set it up.  Your own men may grow jealous of you because you talk on the phone, get mail, or go on visits like they used to during their first 2 years down.  But now they are 15 years in and shit has changed.  They’re lonely and bitter cuz ain’t no love coming in from the streets, no woman, no more mail, no more phone, no more food, no more visits.  And you’re fresh off the streets shinning, just “doing you.”  But in his twisted, bitter mind he sees you as bragging and flashing.  He’s boiling in jealousy and envy.  So he plants a knife under your bed.  Officers are informed.  They swarm on you.  They find it in your area.  You go to the hole.  Segregation for a year.  Now you don’t get visits.  You don’t get food.  You don’t use the phone.  Your mail is delayed.  And you’ll be the only one keeping it real.  The streets, the hood, the block, are the same as prison.  It is filled and flooded with dishonor, hate, rage, greed, jealousy, envy, deception, and destruction.  This ain’t what you want.  Do not come here.  Hard core killers, Thugs, Hoods, Rebels, and Ruffnecks will tell on you.  With the right amount of pressure & pain, with the threat of prosecution & persecution they will testify on you.  They will inform the authorities on you.  There is no loyalty.  Selfishness is the only loyalty.  Selfishness is the only reality of the city block & the prison block.  All you got is you.  That’s why you’re the only one keeping it real…

          Lastly remember this, some police officers won’t even keep it real.  Crooked cops will lie, fabricate & falsify evidence.  If they’re frustrated because they can’t catch you legally, fair, and square, they will set you up.  When driven by the rage of racism they’ll harass you.  When fueled in a frenzy of fear they will shoot & kill you.  Your reputation in your area may be that of a hardcore hard head & trouble maker.  The police may pull you over based on that rep.  And on that one day you may actually be clean, riding with no drugs, no weapons, but the cop has been itching to bust you for a long time, itching to shoot you for an even longer time.  Is he gonna keep it real, is he gonna let you go, or will he turn your car into a casket?  Is the full time correctional officer also a part time farmer planting razor blades in your cell so you can sit in segregation for a year or 2?  Do you really wanna put your life in the hands of a crooked cop?  Do you really wanna leave your life in the hands of your homeboy?  Do you ever wonder if you’ll be the only one keeping it real?