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George Jackson University – a statement from its founder

May 25, 2016

by Abdul Olugbala Shakur

Within the California Department of Corrections (CDCr), the name George Jackson evokes both fear and hate among prison guards. His very name represents resistance – the epitome of our Black manhood – and this explains in part why the CDCr has spent the last 44 years attempting to censor the name George L. Jackson from within its prisons.

This is Abdul Olugbala Shakur’s tattoo. When CDCr or the courts ask him what it means, he says, “Don’t eat pork.”

This is Abdul Olugbala Shakur’s tattoo. When CDCr or the courts ask him what it means, he says, “Don’t eat pork.”

Between 1988 and 2014, no prisoner within the CDCr or any other prison system in this country has suffered more than I for keeping the name George Jackson alive within the Prison Industrial Slave Complex (PISC), and I embrace this suffering without regrets; instead, I wear it as a coat of arms in the service of our revolutionary struggle.

Many within society had suggested at the onset that I (we) change the name of our movement and organization to avoid confrontation with the CDCr/PISC. Even some prisoners have made similar suggestions and explanations to substantiate their position, but I emphatically rejected this suggestion outright.

For unbeknownst to many, the confrontation between the George Jackson University and CDCr was a deliberate and orchestrated strategy. For the past 44 years, since the assassination of Comrade George, the CDCr more than any other fascist, racist government entity within the U.S., has attempted to criminalize and dehumanize Comrade George, reducing him to a gang member, a symbol of prison gang activity – i.e., the Black Guerrilla Family, BGF.

This scheme allowed the CDCr to criminalize any New Afrikan/Black prisoner who dared embrace the legacy and spirit of Comrade George, and this method has worked. Many Brothas are reluctant to even read his books and other writings for fear of being accused of being involved in prison gang activities.

At one time, a false allegation could lead to a life sentence to solitary confinement isolation. I personally spent 32 years in solitary confinement isolation because I refused to abandon Comrade George and all that he had sacrificed in the service of our people!

The question that tends to be at the front of most people’s sense of reasoning, why not change the name from the GJU to something else? Why create an unnecessary confrontation? As New Afrikan revolutionaries, we believe that the resolution of contradictions is an imperative component towards facilitating our search for truth, facts and progress.

At one time, a false allegation could lead to a life sentence to solitary confinement isolation. I personally spent 32 years in solitary confinement isolation because I refused to abandon Comrade George and all that he had sacrificed in the service of our people!

Comrade George was not a thug or gang member. He was a genuine revolutionary, fighting against the violent state-sponsored racism that was – and still is – prevalent and openly blatant, a reality that the CDCr consistently attempts to divorce from the principles of cause and effect.

Comrade George did not just wake up one morning and decide he is to make the CDCr our or his enemy. Set aside the CDCr’s self-serving propaganda and let’s look at the facts as they pertain to the oppressive conditions that New Afrikan prisoners were subjected to.

These very conditions are going to require one of two responses: 1) Capitulate to the racist terror that New Afrikan/Black prisoners were being subjected to on a daily basis, or 2) Organize against this blatantly racist state/CDCr-sponsored terrorism and wage a campaign of resistance and self-defense.

Comrade George and others decided to fight back and resist state-sponsored racist-based terrorism, and because of their refusal to capitulate, the CDCr has labeled Comrade George and other New Afrikan revolutionaries of that period, 1967-1978, gang members as a strategic scheme designed to make legitimate resistance illegal and criminal and punish any New Afrikan prisoners who choose the course of legal and legitimate resistance!

This is why it was necessary for me to instigate this open confrontation, to reveal to the people who are the real criminals. This government is no different from Nazi Germany or other fascist regimes that suppress legitimate opposition to their tyranny. Comrade George and other New Afrikan revolutionaries during that time were a direct manifestation of the cause and effect principles: Violent racist oppression is the cause, and New Afrikan resistance is the effect.

So I ask, why should I surrender the truth to appease a lie? I understand that many of you may not support the principles of armed resistance, and I can respect that, but our response at that time was necessitated by the harsh and violent repression that we as New Afrikan prisoners were being subjected to.

No different from the fascist psychosis that is inherent in all fascist regimes, the CDCr was and is offended: How dare you fight us back? Nigger, you should not be resisting.

Comrade George and other New Afrikan revolutionaries during that time were a direct manifestation of the cause and effect principles: Violent racist oppression is the cause, and New Afrikan resistance is the effect.

The CDCr wants us to willingly submit to violent racist oppression. I think not. To abandon the truth as it relates to Comrade George would be equivalent to surrendering to the racism. This truth is not nor has it ever been determined by the very forces responsible for that racist oppression!

We will resist, and the GJU is a testament to our resistance. It is our culture of resistance. Comrade George was one of many who represented our glorious culture of resistance!

If CDCr was all about truth and justice, then help me understand how it openly and passionately supports George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and other presidents and politicians who were openly involved in crimes against humanity. They supported and were willing participants in the system of genocidal slavery.

We will resist, and the GJU is a testament to our resistance. It is our culture of resistance. Comrade George was one of many who represented our glorious culture of resistance!

These leaders also directly participated in a system that is responsible for murdering millions of innocent people, including women and children. CDCr has the audacity to condemn us for supporting the REVOLUTIONARY WORK OF COMRADE GEORGE, but they have no problem openly supporting white leaders that have the blood of innocent people on their hands, not to mention women and children!

Comrade George was falsely accused of only two murders. George Washington, based on his historical account, is responsible for committing genocide against the Afrikans as well as the indigenous people of North Amerika. We are talking about MILLIONS of Afrikans that were tortured, raped and murdered in this country under the government-sponsored system of slavery and Jim Crow.

Now you tell me, who is the real criminal, Comrade George or George Washington? If this is about truth and justice, the answer to this question is obvious for anyone seeking the truth. George Washington is the real criminal and gangster.

But if the GJU was GWU, the George Washington University, we would have no problem with the CDCr. In fact, the CDCr would encourage us if not provide us with material support. I should not have to further expound on who is actually fighting the just war as it relates to the GJU and CDCr.

The idea of transforming the New Afrikan criminal mentality did not originate with myself or Dr. Donald R. Evans, who worked with me to found GJU. The original ideas were developed by Comrade W.L. Nolan, George L. Jackson, Howard Tole, John Gordon, Tony Gibson, Deathrow Jeff, William Christmas, Bunchy Carter, James Carr and Hugo Pinell, just to name a few.

The idea never had the opportunity to mature due to the CDCr war of violent suppression against New Afrikan prisoners, but our comrades did leave us with a blueprint, and all I did was modify the tactical and strategic application.

Much has changed since the 1960s and early 1970s. What was applicable then is no longer applicable now, so out of necessity I was compelled to modify the idea for GJU but maintain its original objective – the transformation of the New Afrikan criminal mentality. In addition to transforming the New Afrikan mentality, the stabilization of our communities is also one of our primary objectives for GJU.

We have multiple contradictions that are interconnecting. For example, we cannot effectively speak about mass incarceration without speaking about recidivism, nor can we speak about recidivism without effectively speaking about the stabilization of the New Afrikan community, and this is something Comrade George fully understood.

But unfortunately many within the movement had failed to grasp the significance of the white prison rights activists. So instead of waiting for them to get it, the GJU will chart this course by laying out the most effective blueprint that will be designed to navigate our people and community through the orchestrated government-sponsored scheme designed to facilitate the path from poverty to crime to the prison industrial slave complex (PISC).

We cannot effectively speak about mass incarceration without speaking about recidivism, nor can we speak about recidivism without effectively speaking about the stabilization of the New Afrikan community, and this is something Comrade George fully understood.

The GJU has five primary objectives: 1) To eradicate functional illiteracy among New Afrikan (Black) prisoners. 2) To eradicate cultural ignorance among New Afrikan prisoners. 3) To transform the New Afrikan criminal mentality. 4) To assist in the rebuilding and stabilization of the New Afrikan community. 5) To prepare New Afrikan prisoners for release and reduce New Afrikan recidivism.

People, this is a concrete movement, a movement and organization that is charged with the stabilization of our communities. We cannot effectively resist police brutality from a position of weakness, and our communities are fighting a battle from a position of weakness.

The GJU intends to be at the forefront in transforming the community into a strong, self-reliant and powerful base of operations with the capacity to resist fascism! racism! repression! and oppression!

People, our present goal is to build the necessary formation that is going to get the job done. We are asking for you to join our movement and organization. If you are serious about achieving the above objectives, then we encourage you to join this worthy endeavor.

The GJU intends to be at the forefront in transforming the community into a strong, self-reliant and powerful base of operations with the capacity to resist fascism! racism! repression! and oppression!

Before I end this statement, it would be remiss of me not to mention those who have been primarily responsible for keeping the GJU alive and functioning. To be honest, the present success of the GJU is primarily due to their hard work and sacrifices: my Sista and Comrade Kilaika Baruti Shakur, my Brothas Akili Mwalimu Shakur, Bomani Shakur and Anajaku, just to name a few.

We also encourage people to listen to our radio show, GJU Radio, hosted by Bomani Shakur, Sista Kilaika and Sista Diamond. Call 347-826-7332 every Wednesday from 5 to 7 p.m. West Coast time and 7 to 9 p.m. East Coast time.

We are presently looking for field coordinators. A field coordinator is responsible for coordinating the GJU in their state or other jurisdiction. Each individual will be screened to avoid enemy infiltration. No law enforcement allowed!

We as a people must get beyond lip service. It’s time for action. No one who claims to represent or embrace the spirit of Comrade George can justify just paying lip service. Comrade George was an active soldier and leader; he allowed his actions to reflect what he believes in his heart.

No more talking! We talk too damn much, and then we appear to be at a loss. Why are we still in the positions we are in? Well, I can tell you, too much damn lip service!

I challenge you to challenge us at GJU. Join our organization and movement, and if you’re dissatisfied, you can go back to doing whatever the hell you were doing! People, I will now leave you and yours with the gift of profound New Afrikan revolutionary love, trust, respect and support!

To learn more, contact Kila Shakur at 214-861-8068, write to George Jackson University (GJU), 422 N. Marsalis #2, Dallas, TX 75203, and visit www.georgejacksonuniversity.com. Note: If you are not serious about joining the GJU, please don’t call and waste our time. We are not a pen pal site.

I challenge you to challenge us at GJU. Join our organization and movement, and if you’re dissatisfied, you can go back to doing whatever the hell you were doing!

Death before dishonor!

Abdul Olugbala Shakur

Send our brother some love and light: Abdul Olugbala Shakur, s/n J. Harvey, C-48884, Kern Valley State Prison, B2-117, P.O. Box 5102, Delano, CA 93216.

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