Jailhouse Rock

A Christian Road Show Comes to Rikers

Like many Rikers prisoners, Brockington identifies himself as Jewish in order to get kosher food, the only meals not prepared by inmates in the jails' kitchens. "The kosher meals are healthiest," Brockington explained. "They come in sterile with plastic covering so it's really hard for someone to spit in it."

Nearby, Marc Sanon was, like every inmate around him, playing the role of music critic. "I know God is good and everything," said the 27-year-old from Crown Heights, Brooklyn. "But if they're going to bring in a show, they should bring something more exciting." Sanon has seen a lot of concerts during his 12 stints on Rikers, including shows by Rah Digga and Wu-Tang Clan. While he said he liked some of today's music, he pronounced the show "boring."

Clark Bartram: Bodybuilding model and evangelical emcee
photo: Meg Handler
Clark Bartram: Bodybuilding model and evangelical emcee

Nevertheless, the prisoner, who is Muslim, left the concert with a copy of Operation Starting Line's 32-page booklet, "Running the Race: A One-Week Introduction to Christian Life." Why did he take this literature? About the volunteer who handed it to him, Sanon says, "I was just trying to talk to the young lady to get her number."

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