Lynne says: “High five and Fist bump Congratulations to Bret Grote and the Abolitionist Law Center and Bob Boyle for the hard work and challenge that they have fulfilled so admirably. We must continue to fight for and protect those still in the belly of the Beast while we struggle to bring them Home !!!
Mumia Abu-Jamal’s Legal Team Files for Immediate Treatment & Injunctive Relief
August 24, 2015: Attorneys for political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal filed a motion for preliminary injunction in “Abu-Jamal vs. Kerestes” today with Judge Robert Mariani in the Middle District of Pennsylvania seeking a federal court order to ensure that prison medical staff provide immediate life- saving hepatitis C treatment to Mumia Abu-Jamal. Abu-Jamal is incarcerated at SCI Mahanoy in Frackville PA. Please see today’s filings here as well as the first amended complaint here.
Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) medical staff and DOC counsel have refused Abu-Jamal’s demand for treatment and denied letters from his lawyers and independent doctors documenting the critical need for immediate treatment. Medically necessary treatment for hepatitis C consists of new antiviral drugs that have a 95% cure rate, and consists of one pill per day over the course of 12 weeks with minimal side effects.
Blood tests for the hepatitis C viral load done in July at the insistence of Abu-Jamal, his lawyers, and consulting doctors have confirmed that Abu-Jamal has active hepatitis C, which is most likely the underlying cause of his year-long, escalating health crisis.
Mumia Abu-Jamal remains weak and sick in the prison infirmary. He is currently not receiving treatment for a persistent and debilitating skin condition that is itchy and painful. Mr. Abu-Jamal has already suffered two hospitalizations, one a near fatal episode after SCI Mahanoy’s medical staff refused to treat or even monitor his dramatic and dangerously excessive blood glucose level, leading to diabetic shock. Every day that medically indicated treatment is denied carries the significant risk of continued and irreversible injury.
Send a birthday card to the prisoners and let them know they are in our hearts and on our minds. Bios of political prisoners linked from Jericho website.
Dunne, Bill #10916-086
Latine, Maliki Shakur # 81-A-4469
Shabazz Bey, Hanif (Beaumont Gereau)
Shakur, Mutulu #83205-012
Shoats, Russell Maroon #AF-3855
Lynne wanted everyone to read this article:
Beyond Innocence: US Political Prisoners and the Fight Against Mass Incarceration
(Image: Lauren Walker / Truthout)
President Obama’s recent statements about mass incarceration, together with his decision to commute the sentences of 46 people serving lengthy and life sentences in federal prison on drug charges, treat “nonviolent drug offenders” as the symbolic figureheads of America’s prison problem. This framing seems to imply that everyone else actually deserves to be in prison.
But the world’s biggest prison system is not filled with nonviolent drug offenders alone. Before and alongside the war on drugs, mass incarceration was built through the wholesale repression of radical movements – especially in communities of color.
Take, for example, the cases of two other people who have long sought commutations from Obama and other presidents before him: Leonard Peltier and Oscar Lopez Rivera. Both men are longtime activists who have each served more than 30 years in prison and garnered international support for their release from figures such as Archbishop Desmond Tutu and organizations such as Amnesty International.
“We have to demand freedom for those who struggle for freedom.”
Peltier is an Anishinabe-Lakota former member of the American Indian Movement (AIM) serving two life sentences for the 1975 death of two FBI agents killed during a confrontation between FBI and AIM on the Pine Ridge reservation. Lopez Rivera is a Puerto Rican former community organizer from Chicago who is serving a 55-year sentence for “seditious conspiracy,” an outmoded charge that makes it illegal to plot against the US government.
Throughout the 20th century, the United States has tried dozens of Puerto Rican independence activists with seditious conspiracy – including 11 of Lopez Rivera’s codefendants, whom President Clinton freed in 1999 after a remarkable campaign for their release.
“We have to demand freedom for those who struggle for freedom,” said Alejandro Molina, a member of the coordinating committee for the National Boricua Human Rights Campaign, a prominent organization demanding freedom for Lopez Rivera.
Peltier and Lopez Rivera are two among dozens of people incarcerated for actions they took as part of radical social movements. Many are former members of the Black Panther Party – people such as Herman Bell, Romaine Chip Fitzgerald and Ed Poindexter – who have been in prison for more than 40 years. They are some of America’s political prisoners.
For some, the idea of political prisoners conjures images of far-off dictatorial regimes imprisoning opponents for their beliefs. Yet this country has a long history of imprisoning its dissidents. Political prisoners have included people incarcerated for nonviolent direct actions, such as sabotaging nuclear weapons facilities or participating in civil disobedience. But the ones who have received the longest sentences and the harshest treatment inside are people who have been convicted of violent offenses, typically against police, or conspiring against the government.
In fact, political prisoners have been the canaries in the coal mine for mass incarceration: Some of the most distinguishing features of the American prison state – aggressive policing, hefty charges, preventive detention, lengthy sentences, parole denial and prolonged solitary confinement – were first deployed as means to stop radical social movements beginning in the 1960s. Political dissidents and other oppressed communities remain guinea pigs for the intensity of American punishment. Read the rest of this entry »
Lynne plans to attend.
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