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[Culture]
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The Oscar Goes to the White Man

The trademark Oscar is one of a group of statuettes awarded annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for achievement in motion picture production and performance. Lately there has been a lot of buzz about the Oscar nominations, and the lack thereof when it comes to the oppressed nations. The CBS morning news, Access Hollywood, and other TV programs have made mention of the "whiteness" of this year's acting nominees for the Oscars.

It was said on the CBS morning news that the panel that has the responsibility of deciding who to nominate for an Oscar is 94% white male. Personally, I don't see why there's such a "buzz", because hystorically we know that this nation is controlled and dominated by white male imperialists who do not have the oppressed nations' best interest at heart. After all, the "Oscar" is a gold statue of a white man; the gold representing capitalism and the exploitation of the people, and the white man of course representing colonialism and imperialism at its core.

People are complaining that the top honors of the Oscars have been whitewashed. But the Oscars have not been whitewashed — they've been white all the time. The Oscars were not created to honor or acknowledge the artistic endeavors of the oppressed nations. People in the hoods, ghettos, and barrios know this, and thus, don't give a damn about the Oscars.

In Webster's unabridged dictionary, the definition for Academy Award is: "an annual award given to a performer, director, technician, etc., of the motion picture industry for superior achievement in a specific category: judged by the voting members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and symbolized by the presentation of an Oscar.”

The key phrase in the above definition is "superior achievement." Traditionally and hystorically in this genocidal nation that we call Amerikkka, the lumpen and oppressed nations have never been given credit or even acknowledged as having any "superior achievement." And the fact that the imperialists hold themselves to be "superior" is at the root of white supremacy in this country.

Therefore, how could it be a surprise that none of the 20 acting nominees for the 2015 Oscar nominations were people from the oppressed nations? I suppose what is even more important, is why should it matter? We (oppressed nations) should not look for acceptance or confirmation from the oppressor nations to validate our achievements and success.

As long as Amerikkka is dominated by an imperialistic economic system, and the injustice, racism, and oppression that come with it, she will never be color-blind. We know and understand that the Oscars do not reflect the true demographic of Amerikkka. Amerikkka is in a state of constant browning, and in a just society, this would be reflected in nominations of any kind.

However, it is clear that we do not live in a just society and we must view this lack of diversity in the nominations accordingly. In a socialist or communist society, the disparities we see today would not exist, and one reason would be because there would be no golden white man representing superior achievement. We also know and understand that the entire Hollywood apparatus is owned and controlled by those who hold capitalist values close to heart. We look forward to the day when people are recognized for their achievements in service of the people, and not the capitalists.

The imperialists use media outlets to promote their agenda, not ours. Television (tell-lie-vision) and movies are two of the most effective tools that the imperialists use to indoctrinate, brainwash and control us. Therefore, when they don't nominate oppressed nation people for their token awards, that simply means that oppressed nation people are not embarking upon the kind of artistic endeavors that their oppressors want them to — and that is a good thing. To hell with the powers that be! Damn them and Oscar!

As for me, I say we've been doing too much damn acting anyway — it's time to start doing some real revolutionary work. Power to the people who stand up, act out, and act up in the interest of freedom, justice, and equality.


MIM(Prisons) adds: This writer is correct that the Amerikan entertainment industry only represents the imperialist segment of society. Hollywood's main ambition is to create culture that perpetuates imperialist values, and makes all the woes that are an inherent part of this economic system palletable to as many people as possible.

The exclusion of oppressed nation culture from the Academy Awards is only one reason why reforms to the imperialist system is not where we should focus our creative energies. Instead of grooming revolutionaries to seek acceptance in bourgeois cultural institutions, we need to be creating alternative culture, controlled by revolutionaries.

This is one reason why we are pushing a revolutionary art project through which prisoner artists can create art that serves the people's struggles and share it with others. Besides creating art for the pages of Under Lock & Key and our other publications, we are distributing greeting cards, bookmarks, mini posters, and coloring book pages that spread the incredible art of the Strugglen Artists Association contributors. If you want to contribute original artwork to this project, or help distribute the materials to others, get in touch!

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[Prison Labor] [Environmentalism] [California]
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CALPIA - Building Better Lives for a Safer California

As a prisoner I see this slogan almost every day while being housed in prison. It's the slogan stamped onto the inner sole of every pair of PIA shoes. Shoes made ultra-cheap due to the quality control that doesn't even exist. This is yet another way the state is saving a buck on our comfort. When I first came to join the PIA, prison issue were brown hard bottom boot, which they gave every convict coming out of reception. Those boots not only provided PIA workers with a job but also others prisoners with one as shoe shiners.

You might be thinking wow, what a low position. But if so, that's only because you weren't here. The shoe shine, if he mastered the art, got plenty of business and made however much he was willing to commit on working for. His customers were not only convicts, they also were Correction Officers usually of high rank and they paid well. Now PIA, by cutting cost and operating with the use of low grade, no quality materials, have wiped out several in-prison work assignments and legal hustles or trade exchange. Those boots were made out of leather and so there were leather hobby shops where prisoners were taught how to make belts, wallets, medallions, use special machines and recycle the unusable scraps from the boot line. Creating income, gifts for family, and educating prisoners on how to use their resources.

Now we have low-quality, low-top generic canvas shoes that they expect to fall apart within 90 days when you can get a new pair creating only more pollution and waste. No one benefits from these PIA show factories except those who work there, and I'd be willing to bet someone is lining their pocket with tax-payer money through building these contracts with under-the-table industries who supply such low grade materials. Another bad effect is due to the fact positions at these factories are low in volume. It establishes a classism among convicts, with PIA and private contractors being the highest source of income legally in the joint. Their workers became the ruling class as far as prisoners economics are concerned, with them averaging $100 a month compared to the top culinary assignment at $37 monthly, deducting 55% if they owe restitution before they even receive it.

Ask yourselves what is 45% of 9 cents an hour or 45% of 23 cents an hour? Then there's the poor non-employed convict who is the on the bottom when it comes to privileges by grand design of whom when it's time to unite and stand against any form of oppression are usually always down, with nothing to lose. On the other hand the slave class is divided amongst prisoners, the majority of this class talk about doing something to make a change in conditions, pay, treatment, but when it's time to peacefully demonstrate by striking at work they simply won't go that far. A smaller number out of the slave class will, knowing this is the only process towards change that works. The majority of the slave class are youngsters who enjoy the movement their job provides and don't want to rock the boat. Now the PIA working prisoners by no means will write in solidarity with the convicts in any class including their very own but will both encourage a strike for equal pay and treatment in the hopes of moving up, and others will report it directly to their masters the Correctional Authorities in the hopes of building a stronger rapport and gaining favor.


MIM(Prisons) responds:This comrade gives us a glimpse at some of the contradictions facing prison organizers at the PIA prisons in California. While there are some parallels between the prison system and slavery, we have critiqued the use of the term "slavery" to refer to prisoners. This comrade's description talks about how the prisoners are pawns in a system that is becoming ecologically wasteful, and likely benefitting bureacrats. The wages, while minimal, also play a role for the state in helping control and divide the population via petty economic interests. Battles for higher wages in U.$. prisons can be progressive in putting pressure on the economic viability of oppression. But generally, prison unions that represent the interests of all prisoners must focus on more pressing and common problems.

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[Prison Labor] [Political Repression] [Abuse]
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Soledad Pigs Power Tripping

I'm presently in the hole (Administrative Segregation) for fighting for my rights. My rights were violated when a CO pig cut my pay from $0.18 an hour to $0.13 an hour unjustly with no explanation. So I appealed this issue via the 602 inmate appeal and I also put a citizen's complaint 832.5 on this pig. Before I went to the 602 hearing, another pig, Anguianos' partner, Martinez, tried to bribe me with my pay to sign off on the 602. I refused and documented these encounters and put in a 602 on Martinez for reprisal/retribution just to have this documented in case something happened and sure enough after I refused to sign off on this the Sgt. pig threw his pen on the table and asked me why I would not sign off. He said, "you got what you want, your pay is back at $0.18." I told him my rights were violated and I want it to be known I want my voice heard!

After this, about a month later I was being harassed by two pigs due to this issue, DeFranco and Vasquez. Long story short, they threw me on the fence to put me down. Nice and calm I let them put me down without incident, which made them more mad! The next thing I knew the pig DeFranco put me in cuffs. I asked calmly why I was being put in cuffs. He smiled in my face and told me I would find out.

They put me in a cage and shipped me down. Come to find out the dirty pig planted a weapon on me resulting with me being put in the hole pending DA referal and a SHU term. I put an 832.5 on both these pigs as well for retaliation and I'm pushing for criminal charges to be brought up on said pigs. I'm going to file a lawsuit on all three pigs once I'm done going through the pigs' appeal process, which we all know the outocme of that! I make sure to make a paper trail to back up anything I do so I have proof.


MIM(Prisons) adds: We commend this comrade's tenacity for fighting for justice. We do remind everyone that filing paperwork is just one tactic, as the comrade says, we all know the outcome of that. Without organizing prisoners as a group, even individual legal victories do not lead to building any real change.

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[Spanish] [Mississippi] [ULK Issue 47]
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Pelea en Mississippi guía a Frente Unido de Paz y Unidad

Yo, un miembro honorable de la Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation (Todopoderosa Nación Reyes y Reinas Latinos - ALKQN) mando mi imperecedero amor, fuerza y sacrificio. El 14 de Diciembre la unidad 2 de la Chickasaw County Regional Correctional Facility (CCRFC) explotó en una guerra entre la nación Folk y People. La mayoría de nosotros estábamos dormidos. Siendo quien soy y mi obligación a mi gente, yo hice lo que tuve que hacer. El fin resultó con 2 de nosotros mandados al centro de emergencia. Recibí 8 puntadas y 4 grapas en 2 partes de mi cabeza.

Unos cuantos días antes de este incidente unos cuantos estábamos discutiendo materia que les estaba leyendo de ULK 41. Muchos de nosotros hemos estado presos juntos en tres de las prisiones más violentas de Mississippi (Missippi State Prison Unidad 32, East Mississippi Correctional Facility, y Wilkinson County Correctional Facility). Todos en estado de "security threat group" ("grupo de amenaza a la seguridad" - STG) y alto riesgo. Fue la American Civil Liberies Union (Unión Americana de Derechos Humanos - ACLU), activistas de prisiones, la sabiduría, conocimiento y ánimo de MIM(Prisiones) quienes ayudaron a cerrar la unidad 32 y conseguir que me trasladan a una prisión de mínima seguridad como CCRFC. También tomó el buen comportamiento de mi parte.

Después de la pelea cuando me estaban trasladando del hospital a la prisión, el teniente y el jefe me preguntaron en cual unidad me sentiría más seguro. Les dije que quería regresar a dónde ya estaba. Me llamaron loco y no me querían meter en donde estaba anteriormente. Me preguntaron que por qué yo quería regresar, les dije que es allí dónde yo vivo, nosotros nos sabemos cuidar. Este es un asunto entre los Folks y los Peoples no los puercos.

Lo que me vino a la mente fue un articulo de la primera corona de la Black Order Revolutionary Organization (Organización Revolucionaria de la Orden Negra - BORO) titulada "¡No Saquen, Organícense!" en ULK 41. Eso es lo que hicimos: solucionamos solucionar nuestros problemas e hicimos lo necesario para mantener a los puercos fuera de nuestros asuntos. Ellos se interesan más en quién tiene que y quién hace qué. El día después de la pelea, las escuadras de canallas nos registraron nuestras viviendas buscando contrabando. Claro que el guardián salió en las noticias y dijo que fue un motín que empezó con un individuo abusador que mandaron a correr de la zona. Todos sabíamos que la American Corretional Association (Asociación Americana de Correcciones - ACA) justo paso por aquí y no quería lucir mal por eso fue que mintió.

Estoy de acuerdo con el punto que hizo BORO: cambio no pasara de un día a otro. Tomara tiempo y vamos a cometer errores. Si podemos seguir juntándonos con el entendimiento que estamos en la misma lucha, vamos a poder resolver nuestros asuntos pacíficamente si es posible.

Ya ha pasado más de una semana desde la pelea y estoy honorado en decir que todos vivimos en paz y unidad. Nadie habla de ese día en luz negativa. Nuestras charlas se tratan de cómo podemos trabajar juntos para vencer cualquier obstáculo en nuestra lucha de mantenernos libre de opresión. Nos paramos en solidaridad y unidad. Rezo que todos en otras prisiones en todo el mundo puedan armar una frente unido y que todos tengan paz tras las rejas. Amor de Rey ayer, hoy mañana y siempre.


MIM(Prisiones) agrega: Este es un impresionante ejemplo de lo que United Front for Peace in Prisons (Frente Unida Para Paz en las Prisiones - UFPP) escribió en su declaración fundadora, "Nosotros ya estamos 'unídos' — en nuestro sufrimiento y nuestro represión diaria." Este cambio rápido de hostilidad por unidad refleja el conocimiento entre los presos de CCRFC.

No cabe duda que la presencia de organizaciones amontonadas (LOs) contribuyeron a las condiciones para hacer posible tomar este paso adelante para que la unidad fuera una realidad. Este ejemplo es porque nosotros defendemos los aspectos progresivos que se encuentran en la mayoría de las organizaciones amontonadas (LOs). Camaradas adentro de las LOs que quieren desarrollar el Frente Unido para Paz en las Prisiones deberían trabajar con nosotros para desarrollar los aspectos progresivos de sus organizaciones a protocolos prácticos para armar el frente unido.

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[Spanish] [Police Brutality] [ULK Issue 45]
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La Brutalidad de la Policía Americana y las Torturosas Prisiones son el Mismo Asunto

La decisión de no enjuiciar al cerdo en Ferguson, Missouri por el asesinato de Mike Brown ha desencadenado a la gente, y con mucha razón. Este es un disco rayado de este sistema de injusticia y su intención real. Cuando desperté y perdí las noticias esa primer mañana y vi la reacción de las cortes de no presentarle cargos al policía asesino, yo estuve contento de que la gente estaba expresando su descontento contra este sistema. Digo este sistema porque es realmente este el que apoya la capacidad del Estado de seguir masacrando brutalmente a la gente.

Entonces vi a ese mismo policía asesino en una entrevista y él sin rodeos dijo que él no sentía remordimientos. Él estaba satisfecho de dispararle a un hombre joven en la cara y la cabeza quien estaba simplemente resistiendose a ser asesinado, oponiendose a su asesino. Él era la cara de America y él ofreció un retrato real acerca de todo lo que America es. El barrio en el que Mike Brown fue asesinado era como los barrios de donde son los prisioneros, este es de donde es la mayoría de la gente pobre en los Estados Unidos. Esto es lo que experimentamos cuando interactuamos con el Estado.

No hay excusa para lo que esta ocurriendole a la gente pobre en las calles. Esta es una descarga interminable de desesperación desencadenada entre la gente oprimida. Y sí, todavía habemos muchos prisioneros quienes somos inconscientes a lo que esta sucediendo, aunque esto este ocurriendo en sus calles. Esto es como gente que tiene vendas en los ojos y no ve que está pasando alrededor de ellos, no una o dos veces sino diariamente a través de los Estados Unidos. Los prisioneros necesitan ponerse las pilas y darse cuenta que lo que ocurre afuera en las calles esta relacionado con ellos porque estas son sus gentes quienes están siendo masacradas brutalmente, este es un lado de la guerra que necesita ser volteada. La sublevación en Ferguson es una respuesta a esto y esta es una buena respuesta pero la gente necesita responder en muchas diferentes maneras para manifestar que estos policías asesinos tienen que parar de estar asesinando a la gente.

MIM(Prisons) agrega: nos unimos a la llamada de este camarada para más sublevaciones como en Ferguson. La gente tiene el derecho a estar indignada con el sistema de opresión nacional dentro de los Estados Unidos. y tenemos que llamarle a este sistema claramente por lo que es; no solo hay una multitud genérica de gente pobre en este país, los pobres son desproporcionadamente concentrados en las naciones oprimidas. Estos grupos, Nuevos Africanos, [email protected], Primeras Naciones, junto con minorías nacionales como Mexicanos, viven en un país donde sus barrios son ocupados por la fuerza de la policía imperialista y donde ellos pueden encarar la muerte por el solo crimen de andar por la calle.

Relacionando los puntos para prisioneros incluye reconocer que este es el mismo sistema de injusticia criminal que mete en la cárcel a naciones oprimidas, el que esta matando a la gente en las calles. Los policías, las cortes, y todas las prisiones son parte de este mismo control social sistemático. Y así, protestando los abusos contra prisioneros detrás de las rejas son parte de la gran lucha contra el imperialismo en las calles. Tenemos que hacer estas uniones y mantener en mente los más amplios objetivos mientras peleamos contra la opresión diaria detrás de las rejas.

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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Justice?

Justice? What justice? There is no such thing as justice. Visit the jails and here's what you'll see. "Just us" occupying these modern day concentration camps.

Justice? What justice? Inside the courtroom you think you'll find justice? Absolutely not. You'll find just-ice. What do we associate ice with? Cold. Inside the the courtroom empathy is nonexistent, sympathy nonexistent, feelings nonexistent, emotions nonexistent for the jury, the judge & the district attorney.

I can't find no justice in the courtroom. I'm innocent but they don't believe me. They want me to pay fines court costs and restitution for something I didn't do. So I reach into my pockets pull out the lint and tell them my pockets contain "just this."

Where was justice for Malcolm X, Tupac Shakur, Christopher (Biggie Smalls) Wallace, Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin, the many Black Panthers and Black Liberation Army members who were hunted & viciously murdered with malice by the police & FBI just for association with those organizations? Hmm what happened to the members of the most vicious organization "Ku Klux Klan"? Nothing!

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[Mental Health] [Abuse] [Kern Valley State Prison] [California]
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Psychiatry Tortures Prisoners

Psychiatric prisons, gulags and dungeons are the worst of the worst when compared to the standard human warehouses. These foul dinosaurs are established under the guise of compassionate medical intervention (yes, they actually expect you to believe such garbage). Mental health treatment in psychiatric prisons can be and is torture.

Currently in California, the prisoners are rounded up daily, drugged and forced through the cattle stockades of court cells and into the courts where they are dragged before those of black robe who arbitrarily and capriciously commit them to a virtual (if not actual) life in prisons now designated for those thought to be mentally ill from the viewpoint of imperialism's labor aristocracy. However, one need not be actually suffering from mental illness at all. I was not, and am not, yet this fact had no effect. I myself and many others have been railroaded into psychiatric imprisonment with doctor approved authorization to be at all times heavily sedated. In my case it was only for the use of body building steroids with no prior mental health history requiring medical intervention of any kind.

And, while being held within these psychiatric prisons and jails I have been, and many others are, tortured and abused, starved and injured, sometimes on a daily basis. I have observed young guys whose faces are now a mass of scarring due to them being drugged to the point of unconsciousness and where massive enforcer brutes are purposefully let into their cells to beat those who are drugged, and the victims of such beatings are left to suffer within their cells with no medical attention at all.

These designated prison and jails have cells with feces on the walls and floors. Desk-type tables caked with old dried foods and grime combined to form an un-cleanable cemented solid. And they are usually air conditioned in winter and heated in summer, especially where these cell occupants are given no mattress and sometimes for days no blankets as well. I currently have prison guards who pass my cell door, which is all steel, every fifteen minutes, 24 hours a day, and bang on it loudly with a steel baton like device. Try attaining a deep restorative pattern of sleep under those conditions. This is the current living environment of Amerikkka's psychiatric prisons and the pitiful inhabitants of its populations.

I am not under the illusion that these facts are not already known by our professionals of community, politics and prisons. Yet, according to a recent news publication, "[in the state of California] the Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) funnels hundreds of millions of dollars to construct prisons and jails - and many have been pitched as 'mental health treatment facilities'."... "It should come as no surprise that the BSCC is mostly composed of cops: Jeffery Beard, Secretary of the California Department of Corrections, Sheriffs, probation officers, and chiefs of police."... "It is not shocking when that group of people thinks that the best way to invest in mental health treatment is to build shiny new jails."(1)

What is termed pathological and rooted in psychosis in Amerikka's systems of injustice and unjust forensic psychology are in fact political offenses in nature. Such people incriminated and imprisoned should not be civilly nor criminally committed at all. "Mental health treatment... [should be provided and] funded in the community"(1); preferably by a community of communists. "We need to stop pretending that prisons solve the violence in our communities, or we will never actually end that harm or end mass incarceration."(2)

Onward! in psychiatric prison abolition efforts, and even more so the world-wide abolition of the parasite imperialism.


Notes:
1. Kamella Janan Rasheed, "The New Inquiry", Black and Pink newspaper, December 2014, p.5-6
2. Emily Harris, article in Black and Pink Newspaper, December 2014, p.8


MIM(Prisons) adds: This writer correctly identifies a problem with Amerikan prisons that is actually pervasive throughout imperialist society: the use of psychiatry to label people as mentally ill because they do not conform to capitalist behaviors and values. As we explained in the ULK article Mental Health: A Maoist Perspective:

"In imperialist prisons, the ambiguity of diagnosing people as mentally ill becomes very pronounced. Part of the problem is that imprisonment causes mental health problems, so people who may not have had symptoms that would lead to a diagnosis often develop them. Yet it is not in the oppressor's interests to recognize this problem, so staff feel that they must draw a line between the truly ill and the "fakers." Rather than seeing the prisons as causing mental illness, they see people acting out for attention in contrast to those who were born with "real" mental illness. Such silly exercises allow them to keep some prisoners sedated while pushing others to suicide."

Ultimately the purpose of prisons is social control, and the purpose of mental health facilities is the same. They are another tool of this social control which targets oppressed nations within U.$. borders. We must expose these facilities and fight against the torture that this comrade describes.

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[Organizing] [United Front] [Pennsylvania] [ULK Issue 43]
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Carry on the September 9 Day of Peace and Solidarity

I'm responding to the article "Summing Up September 9 Protests" from ULK 41. I became aware of United Front for Peace in Prisons (UFPP) Day of Peace and Solidarity from my August issue of ULK. I fasted on September 9, but it was done in a custom as Ramadan. This year I will fast according to UFPP custom. Solidarity means working or struggling in a union, and I want to start with those who choose to participate. In solitary confinement here at this prison it is difficult to get the prisoners to partake in the fast because of their political immaturity. Many of them are gang members and they are in the hole for fighting amongst themselves. I try to talk with them about taking life more serious, but peer pressure is what forces many to stay in a state of illusion.

You asked what needs to be done about the September 9 Day of Peace and Solidarity to broaden its impact. We must continue to promote that day and try to let prisoners see it as a day of unity that represents all prisoners in this racist country. They need to view it as a so-called holiday for prisoners throughout this country. Try to promote to them that this is their day in solidarity with the brothers or comrades at Attica, who lost their lives for better conditions in prisons. Being in captivity since the mid-seventies, I learned that this new generation of prisoners doesn't appreciate the sacrifices those made decades ago. I was labeled as a ring leader and spent over 3.5 years in the hole for being one of the peace makers during the Camp Hill spontaneous uprising.

I understand that not everyone can fast for health reasons, and most individuals can't afford to risk losing their prison jobs because that's the only income they receive. Therefore, you must come up with an alternative so that everyone can still support the cause of September 9 in their own way, because you don’t want anyone to feel as though they can't be part of the September 9 Day of Peace and Solidarity because of not fasting or needing to work. Hopefully we can have a larger participation this year. I'm looking forward to it and I will definitely spread the word.


MIM(Prisons) responds: This writer is responding to the article we published summing up the September 9 Day of Peace and Solidarity 2014, which saw a decrease in reported participation. We asked for input on how we should proceed with that action. We agree with promoting this as a day of solidarity with the comrades in the Attica struggle, and we encourage everyone to participate in building peace, by networking, putting a moratorium on fighting, and educating others on the necessity of peace. This is something that can be done regardless of whether you take up the fasting and work strike, by reaching out to educate others about the Attica struggle and our work today and why we need to build peace between individuals and groups throughout the prisons. If we can have this one day with no conflict between prisoners, that would be a great victory in demonstrating what is possible, and we can use that to build lasting peace. A critical part of this is education: our activists need to be well-educated themselves on the history of this struggle, so that leading up to, and on, September 9 they can in turn educate others. To this end we've put together a study pack for everyone building the United Front for Peace in Prisons, which includes historical information about Attica as well as organizing materials for September 9. Write to us for a copy. Let's make 2015 the most productive Day of Peace and Solidarity yet!

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[Rhymes/Poetry]
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A Plague in the Community

There is a plague in my community - self hate we call it
A dis-ease of media color programming
Jimmy killed Bobby for walking on Mr. Brown's street
Bobby's brother killed Jimmy for killing Bobby
Mr. Brown's K-9s killed 160,000 in California alone
and the numbers are still rising!
I said: THERE IS A PLAGUE IN MY COMMUNITY!!!
Sistah Susie didn't like here hair
So she bought some chemicals and dog fur
To make her hair look like Mr. Brown's daughter's hair
Sistah Susie didn't like her eye color
So she bought some plastic eyes from Mr. Brown's wife's store
To make her eyes appear the color of Mrs. Brown's eyes
Sistah Susie didn't like her skin color,
breasts, stomach, lips, nails, nose, ass, language, culture, attitude
So she bought & changed
bought & changed
bought & changed, until...
Sistah Susie didn't like me no mo
She said: You talk with double negatives - ebonics
What she talkin bout!! I ain't got no negatives - ebonics - whatever!
Damn plague! I ain't hardly got a Sistah no mo
Doctor say them chemicals were "kau-ze-genic" or sumthin
The col-e-jins breasts leaked he say
Damn plague!!

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[Middle East] [Organizing] [Perry Correctional Institution] [South Carolina] [ULK Issue 42]
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Organizing South Carolina Prisoners in Solidarity with Palestine

While reading what a California prisoner said in ULK 41, I was disappointed to see that the Muslim prisoners failed to meet their obligation in supporting the solidarity movement in support of the oppressed people of Palestine. Therefore, I decided to put together a petition here in hopes that we could at least show our support by signing a piece of paper.

Although I initially drafted the petition for the Muslim community here, there were a couple of non-Muslim brothers who signed it as well. And just as the California brother was met with some opposition, I too encountered quite a few "brothers" who were either afraid to sign or just didn't care about the plight and fight of the Palestinian people.

However, I collected thirty signatures and I do believe that I could have gotten more, but I really don't have access to the yard as some other prisoners do. There are a few of us here that are true and tested soldiers and we are trying to bring forth some political and social awareness, though most of us are learning as we go.

The petition reads:


A Statement of Unity and Solidarity with the Palestinian People, from Muslim Prisoners in South Carolina (Note: Non-Muslims signed as well)

As prisoners of good conscience we reject the genocide and slaughter which has hystorically been imposed on the people of Palestine and which is currently being played out by the Jewish state ever since the creation of I$rael in 1948. And while the Amerikan imperialists and their general citizenry and population have found us guilty of crimes against civil society, we prisoners likewise find them guilty of crimes against humynity for their collusion with the state of I$rael to exterminate the Palestinian nation.

Within these walls we are as yet powerless to tap into the potential of the imprisoned lumpen, but we are not yet powerless to sign a piece of paper to denounce the state of I$rael and their support in the United $tates. Therefore with this declaration we angrily express our indignation with the state of Israel for committing genocide, and the Israeli people for allowing it to happen in the 21st century after vowing "never again."


MIM(Prisons) adds: We had previously reported on the relative success of a campaign to support Palestine led by United Struggle from Within following the latest flurry of attacks by I$rael. Due to timing and mail issues only a small number of USW leaders were notified of the campaign at first. It is good to see that the campaign continues to gain support across the U.$. prison population. This is internationalism in action, recognizing the interconnectedness between all oppressed nations under imperialism.

This comrade wrote that they are "as yet powerless to tap into the potential of the imprisoned lumpen." Yet it is actions just like the Palestine petition which help open the door to develop the potential of our imprisoned comrades. Even having access to a small number of people, as in this author's case, we can start the very first steps toward building a bigger movement against oppression and imperialism. Discussing an international act of imperialist aggression with others, and asking them to take a small step toward making a statement against it, is valuable for laying the foundation for bigger things to come.

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