The struggle to save Mumia Abu-Jamal from death by COVID-19, death by egregious police and prosecutorial misconduct, death by empire over humanity, death by politics and self-service, death by lawlessness, is every day a victory for truth and humanity. Each new day shines brighter and the enemy is fully and undeniably exposed.
Transitioning to the Ancestors, San Francisco’s first Black Police Chief, civil rights and police accountability advocate, teacher, expert witness, family man and friend, Earl Sanders leaves a legacy of courage, respectability, accountability and authenticity – and deep convictions like “wrong is wrong” no matter who you are. Rest in Peace, Earl Sanders.
The other truth during the celebratory events of Women’s Herstory Month, are the stories like this one that describe the inhumane conditions women incarcerated in our prisons must suffer through living with physical and mental abuse including deliberate indifference of risk to life from uninhabitable “living” conditions. More community action to hold the prison industry profiteers accountable for crimes against humanity is critical.
While this story has all the same characters as the movie “Hotel Rwanda,” it is not about the movie. This is Ann Garrison’s report about the current lived experience of the movie’s real-life hero, Paul Rusesabagina, being detained last year and going to trial last week under the charge of terrorism. Notorious for assassinations, attempted assassinations and other brutal authoritarian acts, Rwanda’s President Kagame is now also accused of violating US deportation and extradition law.
Guilty While Black – for the purposes of unfettered upward movement in the US Injustice system, those of the racist ruling class deny justice by hook or by crook, no holds barred. Daniel Andre Green, by this courageous description of his lived nightmare, being denied due process, fair and just hearing, judicial integrity or an ounce of respect as a human being, humbly asks for help from anyone who might care.
The alarming thing about this story is that the teller is living it today, yet, as we read, it keeps sounding like something we’ve read about from the past, and it is – it’s the past right now with the same brutalities on the same plantations with the new slaves. The past is now and slavery was never abolished.
Society, and all elements of it, are responding to crossroads events. SF Board of Supervisors is feeling the heat of the proverbial feet to the fire in their negotiations with the San Francisco Police Officers Association’s contract renewal, the Board endowed with the grace of leverage to decide if they are committed, or not, to SFPD reform.
Shaka Shakur makes crystal clear that freedom is not given. Freedom is taken and the price is high. The will of the oppressor to protect property and power is vicious and relentless. To win freedom, we must commit to the courage to take it.
Racism reaches its ugly tentacles into any crack available to it, as proven on multiple levels by the COVID-19 pandemic ravaging the U.S. Forced to resort to technology with apps like Zoom to communicate with each other and enable some form of education for our children, it is increasingly evident that racism via “Zoombombing” against Black people has emerged nationwide.
Kevin Cooper, still caged in San Quentin after 37 years, 35 years on Death Row, speaks with KPFA’s Flashpoints Dennis Bernstein in an exclusive in-depth interview. Cooper talks about simultaneously surviving Death Row and the COVID-19 pandemic, the blues and highlights the opportunity for Governor Gavin Newsom to order an Innocence Investigation, which will shine direct light on prosecutorial wrongdoings and new DNA evidence to support his innocence.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg stood strong in the stature of a giant, and icon and a warrior for democracy during her 27 years on the US Supreme Court. Today the nation mourns the loss of the solid force for good that Justice Ginsburg brought to her relentless service to justice for women and for all people.
San Francisco – In a statement released Aug. 22, San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin emphasizes the importance of AB 767, a bill sponsored by Assemblymember Grayson, which would expand California’s Victim Compensation Board benefits to include victims of police violence.
If you have logged onto the Virginia Department of Corrections’ (VADOC) website or listened to Secretary of Public Safety Brian P. Moran during one of the many televised coronavirus briefings, then you probably were left with the impression that VADOC and Greensville Correctional Center (GCC) officials are taking all of the necessary precautions to prevent or mitigate the spread of the deadly COVID-19 behind the walls of GCC or any other prison in the state. If that is your impression, then YOU HAVE BEEN DECEIVED!
The following words lead off a Washington Post story headlined “Civil rights crusader Fannie Lou Hamer defied men — and presidents — who tried to silence her” by DeNeen L. Brown published Oct. 6, 2017:
On April 9, the Kitsap Sun reported that Pentagon and Navy brass were in conflict about whether there’s a COVID-19 outbreak on the nuclear aircraft carrier USS Chester Nimitz docked at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Washington. I grew up in Bremerton, so much of this story is familiar to me, but like all COVID-19 stories, it’s changing fast.
Just weeks after it was revealed that six previously undisclosed boxes of files labeled “Mumia” were allegedly “discovered” in an abandoned furniture closet in Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner’s office, hundreds of boxes of prisoner’s files have also been found. A Jan. 18 “supplementary verification” from the DA’s Post-Conviction Relief Act Unit (PCRA) revealed that files from imprisoned journalist and activist Mumia Abu-Jamal’s case were among hundreds of other boxes hidden in a storage room. Supporters of Abu-Jamal say the contents could prove malfeasance and lead to dismissal of charges and the release of Abu-Jamal and other defendants.
“What is wrong with Haiti?” is provocatively offered as a question, along with apologies to the great essayist, G.K. Chesterton. The answer to what is wrong with Haiti is that the hand wringers, meaning those of goodwill who profess undying love for the tiny island nation never seem to ask what is right. Nor do they attempt to discern the source of wrongdoing. For over two centuries, Haiti has balanced on a fulcrum. Heaven and hell hang in the balance and only God knows the outcome.
Kanye West has never been afraid to speak out even if what he had to say wasn’t in line with popular opinion. Kanye saying slavery was “a choice” offended many people by degrading the lives of the millions of people who suffered for centuries as slaves. Recently, at the White House, Kanye sprinkled some gold gems in with the foolishness, especially his statement about the 13th Amendment, which did not abolish slavery, not in prison. I refuse to reject the help when entertainers like Kanye West join prisoners in advocating for prisoners’ rights.
Dr. King’s assassination was the key marker in the transition of a great era of social change, from one where “inclusion” in the broader capitalist system was the general thrust to one where the general focus of the Black fight for equality became a broadly defined “self-determination,” rooted in a recognition of the entrenched nature of racism, not simply as a function of attitudes, but as a method of social control.
America’s Declaration of Independence has served as a model for other nations. One hundred sixty-nine years after its ratification, on Sept. 2, 1945, the leader of the independence movement in Viet Nam, Ho Chi Minh, stood in Ba Dinh Square in Hanoi to deliver his Proclamation of the Birth of the Democratic Republic of Viet Nam, “Tuyen Ngon Doc Lap Viet Nam Dan Chu Cong Hoa.”