Filed under: Featured, Prison Break
In the last month we mourned the loss of three revolutionaries, all from different movements and all former political prisoners. Sebastian “Sabi” Senakiewicz of the NATO5 passed unexpectedly on May 30, at age 33. American Indian Movement spiritual leader Leonard Crow Dog passed away on June 6. And on June 16, following ongoing revelations of how the city of Philadelphia murdered and hid her children, MOVE member Consuewella Africa passed on. Sabi, Leonard Crow Dog, and Consuewella Africa Presente!
In June we also witnessed wide scale mass arrests of those protesting the Enbridge Line 3 pipeline, which is still under construction. Over 100 Water Protectors were arrested in Minnesota as they engaged in civil disobedience and blockaded the pipeline pump station. More than 200 were arrested in northern Minnesota, and 31 others days later, all while protesting Line 3 construction.
With further discoveries of residential school mass graves, people across so-called Canada channeled feelings of grief and rage into action…[Making] connections between Canada’s violent history of colonialism and its ongoing destruction of the land, and targeting of Indigenous peoples.
As you switch your Certain Days calendar from June to July we hope you appreciate the beautifully vibrant portrait of Assata Shakur, painted by former political prisoner and frequent calendar contributor Tom Manning. Active with the United Freedom Front, Tom Manning spent 53 years imprisoned before he passed away in July 2019. The essay for the month, entitled “Dykes and Fags Want to Know,” is an interview between former Resistance Conspiracy case political prisoners Linda Evans, Laura Whitehorn, and Susan Rosenberg, first published in 1991 by Queers United in Support of Political Prisoners (QUISP).
Here’s a look back at June, and ways to get involved in July.
Political Prisoner Birthdays
With only two political prisoner birthdays in July, now is a great time to host an online letter-writing party. The personal touch of a birthday card means so much to those inside, and it is a small act of solidarity that can go a long way. Remember that prisoners at Federal prisons (USPs and FCIs) cannot receive cards, colored paper, or colored ink.
Gage Halupowski, #21894460
Snake River Correctional Institution
777 Stanton Blvd.
Ontario, OR 97914-8335
Alexander Lowe*, #00-24143
Smart Communications – Western Virginia Regional Jail
3735 Franklin Rd SW, #275
Roanoke, VA 24014-2260
*Address card to Acre
If you correspond with Doug Wright, note that has been moved to a new prison.
Douglas Wright #57973-060
P.O. BOX 6000
Glenville, WV 26351
Releases, Acquittals, and Dropped Charges
On June 4, imprisoned whistleblower Reality Winner was finally released to a halfway house after serving most of her 5-year sentence under extreme duress. After testing positive for Covid-19 and being denied compassionate release, Reality Winner is now on home confinement though still under Federal custody.
There is an ongoing clemency campaign for Dr. Mutulu Shakur, whose health has continued to deteriorate during his more than 35 years of incarceration. Sign and share the petition, write to Dr. Shakur, and join in the struggle to free him.
As an 84-year-old Covid survivor in the early stages of dementia, Black liberation freedom fighter and political prisoner Sundiata Acoli is fighting for clemency. Learn more about Sundiata, and sign the petition demanding his release.
On June 8, Kings Bay Plowshares 7 defendant Mark Colville reported to MDC Brooklyn to serve his 21 month sentence. Write to Mark at the following address:
Mark Colville, #03610-036
Metropolitan Detention Center
PO Box 329002
Brooklyn, NY 11232
On June 1, the Philly Anti-Repression crew released a statement by members of the Vaughn 17, who were charged in the aftermath of the 2017 prisoner uprising at James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Delaware.
In Case You Missed It
- Don’t miss this piece by Natasha Lennard in The Intercept about anarchist political prisoner Eric King and his civil rights lawsuit against the BOP. You can now order and send books to Eric from his wishlist. And if you’re on Spotify, listen to and share Eric’s latest playlist. #EndlessNameless
- Indigenous political prisoner Oso Blanco now has a new website, full of information, artwork, and ways to offer support. You can also purchase some of Oso Blanco’s latest greeting cards, with proceeds benefiting the Zapatistas, if you haven’t already.
- Be sure to read this new interview with the son of political prisoner Jamil al-Amin (formerly H. Rap Brown).
- There’s a great new article by Sonja Wilde-de Vries about former political prisoner Jaan Laaman, and his lifelong commitment to struggling for a better world.
- Certain Days collective member and former Earth Liberation Front political prisoner Daniel McGowan now has a Patreon, where you can read his writings, share resources, and offer support.
Please send Isaiah letters of support and friendship while he sits in federal custody awaiting sentencing. All prison mail is monitored: Please do not write to him about any illegal activity, his case or the events from the summer of 2020. Thank you all for supporting Isaiah! pic.twitter.com/agGjVOE0uD
— Puget Sound Prisoner Support (@PugetSupport) June 26, 2021
- Be sure to check out the latest NYC Anarchist Black Cross Political Prisoner and Prisoner of War listing, which includes bios and addresses, and new people to support (like the Yellow Finch tree-sitters and the Kings Bay Plowshares activists).
- Don’t miss this Teen Vogue article on Juneteenth, which highlights the ongoing struggle of politicized prisoner Keith Lamar.
- Canadian Tire Fire, the new IGD weekly roundup of “Anarchist News from So-Called Canada,” is extremely informative and worth checking out.
- If you haven’t heard already, our friends at PM Press are offering 50% off all books that you send inside to prisoners. Join in this amazing act of solidarity by using coupon code “CDAYS” when checking out. Be sure to include the number and address for the prisoner(s) for whom you are sending books.
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Certain Days to Keep in Mind
As you’ll see in your 2021 Certain Days: Freedom for Political Prisoners calendar, July is full of radical and commemorative dates. This month, we mourn the passing in 2019 of political prisoner Tom Manning and anarchist and antifascist Willem Van Spronsen. We commemorate prisoner-led strikes and resistance at Pelican Bay in California, Bedford Hills in New York, and in Terre Haute. We also celebrate the takeover of Lincoln Hospital in 1970 by members of the Young Lords, and the birth of revolutionary Assata Shakur 74 years ago.
photo: Robert Hickerson via Unsplash