Simon Apter

Simon Maxwell Apter is a Prospect intern.

Recent Articles

Jailhouse Ruckus

In spite of Katrina's looping right cross to New Orleans and Rita's quick left jab to Lake Charles, Louisiana's Angola Prison Rodeo -- the self-proclaimed "Wildest Show in the South" -- will be held as planned, on five successive Sundays this month at the Louisiana State Penitentiary. Angola, some 135 miles northwest of New Orleans, boasts a 7,500-seat rodeo arena, a forty-year history of prison rodeos, and, now, overcrowding due to an influx of some 1,800 prisoners from flooded coastal correctional facilities. Although few things in Louisiana are operating as planned this month, inmates are nevertheless participating in events like "Wild Cow Milking," "Guts and Glory," and "Convict Poker," Angola's most popular event. (Four "inmate cowboys" play poker in the center of the arena until a 2,000-pound Brahma bull is loosed into the ring; the last inmate sitting at the table wins.) By nature, rodeos are violent, garish scenes, and Angola, built on a former antebellum cotton plantation on...