Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Take A Stand for Mumia and PA Prisoners - Call-in Today

THIS IS A CALL TO ACTION: 

The Campaign to Bring Mumia Home is seeking your support to caravan to Harrisburg, PA on Wednesday, October 15 to fight the newest legislation created to silence the voice of PA prisoners.

Tomorrow, the PA Senate will vote on House bill HB2533 and Senate bill SB508. In the spirit of the "Mumia Exception," this legislation was fast-tracked in direct response to the positive support Mumia received for his Goddard College commencement speech. This bill will make it illegal for prisoners to speak publicly AND sue those prisoners who do and the parties who assist them. 

This legislation was created to silence the voice of political prisoners like Mumia Abu Jamal, Lorenzo "Cat" Johnson and Russell Shoatz whose voices can be heard around the world, in spite of their physical captivity. Consider how much their voices have contributed to our intellectual heritage and collective growth. Consider all that we have learned about prison conditions and prisoner rights violations from the voices of the imprisoned. This bill will not only silence prisoner's voices; it will silence the voice of all those who want to hear them. Legislation like this reminds us that all bodies behind bars are political prisoners. 

The precedence of this repression legislation has far reaching implications for prisoners rights, freedom of speech, and our collective ability to take on the state. We need supporters go to Harrisburg to show physical support and accompany members of the MOVE family as they meet with legislators. If you can attend and or volunteer as a driver, please respond to this email or call 267-259-1740. With enough support, we will rent vans from Philadelphia and NY. Tentative Philadelphia departure is 7:30am.




GET ON THE BUS


Pennsylvania legislators are trying to stop prisoners from speaking about their ideas and experiences. Last week, PA Representative Mike Vereb introduced a bill (HB2533) called the “Revictimization Relief Act,” which would allow victims, District Attorneys, and the Attorney General to sue people who have been convicted of “personal injury” crimes for speaking out publicly if it causes the victim of the crime “mental anguish.”The bill was written in response to political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal’s commencement speech at Goddard College, and is a clear attempt to silence Mumia and other prisoners and formerly incarcerated people. We believe that this legislation is not actually an attempt to help victims, but a cynical move by legislators to stop people in prison from speaking out against an unjust system.

While to us this seems like a clear violation of the first amendment, unfortunately the PA General Assembly doesn’t appear to agree, and they have fast-tracked the bill for approval and amended another bill (SB508) to include the same language. The legislation could be voted on as early as Wednesday.

If this bill passes, it will be a huge blow to the movement against mass incarceration. People inside prisons play a leading role in these struggles, and their perspectives, analysis, and strategies are essential to our work. Incarcerated and formerly incarcerated people who write books, contribute to newspapers, or even write for our Voices from the Inside section would run the risk of legal consequences just for sharing their ideas.

That’s why we are asking you to take action Pennsylvania legislators are trying to stop prisoners from speaking about their ideas and experiences. Last week, PA Representative Mike Vereb introduced a bill (HB2533) called the “Revictimization Relief Act,” which would allow victims, District Attorneys, and the Attorney General to sue people who have been convicted of “personal injury” crimes for speaking out publicly if it causes the victim of the crime “mental anguish.”The bill was written in response to political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal’s commencement speech at Goddard College, and is a clear attempt to silence Mumia and other prisoners and formerly incarcerated people. We believe that this legislation is not actually an attempt to help victims, but a cynical move by legislators to stop people in prison from speaking out against an unjust system.

While to us this seems like a clear violation of the first amendment, unfortunately the PA General Assembly doesn’t appear to agree, and they have fast-tracked the bill for approval and amended another bill (SB508) to include the same language. The legislation could be voted on as early as Wednesday.

If this bill passes, it will be a huge blow to the movement against mass incarceration. People inside prisons play a leading role in these struggles, and their perspectives, analysis, and strategies are essential to our work. Incarcerated and formerly incarcerated people who write books, contribute to newspapers, or even write for our Voices from the Inside section would run the risk of legal consequences just for sharing their ideas.

That’s why we are asking you to take action TUESDAY OCTOBER 14 by calling Pennsylvania lawmakers to tell them that prisoners should not be denied the right to speak.

Please call your legislators and demand that they vote NO on HB2533 and SB508. You can look up contact information at http://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/home/findyourlegislator/.

We are also asking folks to call the following Senate leaders and ask them to stop the bill from moving forward:

Senate Majority Whip Pat Browne (717) 787-1349
Senate Minority Whip Anthony Williams (717) 787-5970
Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi (717) 787-4712
Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa (717) 787-7683


Check back soon for talking points and call scripts!

- See more at: http://decarceratepa.info/freespeech#sthash.jnhxj5Nf.dpu by calling Pennsylvania lawmakers to tell them that prisoners should not be denied the right to speak.




3 comments:

Brad Lee said...

Why Should A People Who Have Been Treated Unjustly And Imprisoned Unjustly Be Made To Be Silence About The Conditions Of Their IMPRISONMENT!?
Is It To Keep The Masses In The Dark Of The Wrongful Death And Unfit Living Conditions Of Our Brothers And Sisters Of MOVE!?
What Are They Charged With And For!?
Exercising Their Right Of FREE SPEECH!
In This World Of Injustice, Do We Have Friends In This System Of Law Or Are We Being Tricked Into Thinking That They Are Siding With The Right Of The People!?
No, We As A People Must Do For Ourselves And Our People Who Are Lacking In The Knowledge Of Themselves!
They Must Know Their Enemies No Matter Where They Are For They Are All Around Us!
But ,We Must Help Get Our People From Under An Unjust System That Wants To Quietly Throw Us Away Into The Caves And Holes That Were Made For Them!
Fight For Our Brothers And Sisters To Receive A Fair Hearing On Being Released On PAROLE!
Sign Petitions And Go To Hearings, Just Let Our People GO!
MAY THE LIGHT OF TRUTH SHINES RAYS OF WISDOM UPON YOUR HEARTS AND MINDS TO DO WHAT BALANCES THE UNIVERSE!
I AM ONE WITH GOD!

Anonymous said...

I concur with what the brother is saying. We must do more to bring our MOVE brothers and sisters home. It has been too long.

Anonymous said...

Last thing we need are to let these ignorant miseducated and misguided people back on the streets.....it's those type of people who fucked us normal people by helping put Obama in office. Fuck em, we're better off without those racists.