New Commentary from Mumia Abu-Jamal and Update

Mumia Abu-Jamal was transfered on Wed December 12th from death row at SCI Greene in Waynesburg PA to SCI Mahanoy in Frackville PA. He remains in Administrative Custody, which has severe restrictions. He has not been able to reach anyone by phone and has had limited visits. Even though he is not technically on Death Row, Mumia remains in solitary confinement. For the first few days of his confinement he had eight sheets of paper and a rubber pen. He now has access to four books and more paper. His visits are still non-contact, behind plexiglass and he is shackled hands in front him with leg irons during these non-contact visits. During his seven hour ride from one rural prison to another he was able to see rolling hills of grass, cows, trees, and the open sky. This is the first time he has been outside of solitary confinement on death row in over fifteen years.

Note from Mumia:
“Well I am here at SCI Mahanoy (accent 1st syllable “Mah-ha-nay) or “slo-death row’: I rapped with two people pre-Mahanoy who told me that the event in Philadelphia was off the hook! I wish I coulda seen it! Shit I wish I was there! This joint is a country joint like Greene but they don’t feel as outwardly “country” as Green (tho they are). Greene guards dig country music; These dudes are generally younger like top 40. But its definitely got a Greene vibe- I think of it as “son of Greene.” I am skimpin ona paper cuz I only got 2 pp left. Give my love to alla peeps” Mu (Mumia Abu-Jamal)

NOTE: The audio for this commentary read by Marc Lamont Hill will be posted soon at Email if you need a copy sooner.

The Prison

[col. writ. 12/17/11] (c) ’11 Mumia Abu-Jamal

Every prison is the same; and every prison is different.

Every prison has its own mythos, (think Alcatraz, Sing Sing, Attica), its own rhythm. hard, cool, tight, relaxed, severe or super max. And every prison is run by class -as in how courts or administrators have classified a crime according to whose interests are threatened.

For example, in every ‘hole” in the State, where all Death Rows are sited, men and women with the worst sentences live the least contentious lives. If they can afford it, (really if their family can), they TV, radio and other amenities -if they can afford it. Some work prison jobs for the glorious wage of around $35 to $50 a month (yes, a month) There, every mind is attuned to the ultimate sentence -death – and against such an immensity, amenities seem trivial.

Yet Death Row is a class (as in classification) and beyond it lies a chasm of classifications that are as maddening as they are mundane – AC (Administrative Custody), DC (Disciplinary Custody), PC (Protective Custody), and beyond.

All are lock-up statuses, all have their distinct rules of what is or isn’t allowed, and all have degrees of repression.

Every major U.S. history book has described America as virtually classless, with rigid class distinctions more a British or European thing. How then can a Nation that claimed classlessness give birth to such institutions that are so riddled with class differentiations?

Because America was never classless, and not only did it have rigid classes, it had (and has), caste, more rigid than stone. Millions of Blacks live in such a caste, as noted recently in Michelle Alexander’s excellent work, The New Jim Crow.

The ruling, wealthy class built prisons and courts to protect them and their wealth from the masses. They have also built the ideological illusion of classlessness, which is maintained through their media. They brayed about freedom, while erecting the most massive prison complex (the prison-industrial-complex) this earth has ever seen.

They built Prison Nation.

(c) ’11 maj

Upcoming Hearing for Lynne Stewart

SAVE THE DATE: Second Circuit Argument in Lynne’s Case February 29, 2012

From Lynne:

“So we finally got a date for oral argument in the Circuit. The date is February 29–Leap year day and Sadie Hawkins Day… Anyway that is our auspicious day. I like it for its quirkiness.

I will NOT be there but that I hope a massive turnout will make up for my absence.”

More information soon.

Atrwork by Kevin ‘Rashid’  Johnson:

Leonard Peltier Walk for Human Rights

18 December 2011 – 18 May 2012

One good man or one good woman can change the world, can push back the evil, and their work can be a beacon for millions, for billions.  Are you that man or woman?  If so, may the Great Spirit bless you.  If not, why not?  We must each of us be that person. That will transform the world overnight. That would be a miracle, yes, but a miracle within our power, our healing power.

~ Leonard Peltier

With the goal of advancing the economic, social, and cultural rights of all people, the Leonard Peltier Walk for Human Rights will begin on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco Bay on the morning of December 18, 2011.  The Walk will follow a route across the southern United States to the east coast and end in Washington, DC, on May 18, 2012.  The ferry to Alcatraz will leave Pier #33 at 8:45 a.m. (assemble at 8:00 a.m.).  The first 300 tickets are available for $14.00 (under 5 years free).  Tickets can be purchased on the day of the event, or online at starting Friday, December 9th. Mention “AIM event”.  The next boat will leave Pier #33 at 9:10 a.m.  (Tickets will be sold at the regular price, $26.)  A ceremony will begin on Alcatraz soon after all have assembled on the island.  A press conference will be held on Pier #33 beginning at 1:00 p.m.

A reception is scheduled for December 17 at 5:00 p.m., at the Inter-Tribal Friendship House, 523 International Boulevard, Oakland, CA.

Are you a freelance reporter/writer in California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North and South Carolina, Virginia, or Washington, DC?  Or maybe you’re a blogger?  Help keep the world informed about the progress of the Walk.  We strongly encourage you to file stories for publication in print or electronic media about this historic Walk for Human Rights.

This event is sponsored by Wind Chases the Sun, Inc., N5679 Skylark Drive, DePere, WI  54115.  For more information contact Dorothy Ninham at 920-713-8114 or (920) 869-2641.  Or contact Gina Buenrostro at (920) 713-2205 or Geronimo Powless at (920-713-3828).

Get information and/or donate securely online at

LP-DOC – PO Box 7488 – Fargo, ND 58106

Phone: 701/235-2206; Fax:701/235-5045

Peltier Update

Remember Mr. Peltier during the holiday season.



P.O. BOX 1033

Mr. Peltier should be placed in a unit with other older prisoners, but USP Coleman has Leonard listed as being 57 years of age when, in fact, he is 67 years old. All of Leonard’s prison records over these many years clearly indicate his correct date of birth.  Write to the warden at USP Coleman to demand that he correct this “clerical error”.

Warden Jorge L. Pastrana

United States Penitentiary-1

PO Bo 1023

Coleman, FL  33521

Overall, the conditions at USP Coleman are inhumane.  The prisoners recently remained in lockdown for over 30 days.  Peltier supporters, please write to demand that Leonard be moved to the medium security facility in Oxford, Wisconsin, in deference to his age, health, and current inability to maintain ties with family members and members of his Nation, the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians.  


Dr. Thomas Kane, Acting Director
Federal Bureau of Prisons
320 1st Street, NW
Washington, DC 20534
Phone: (202) 307-3250 (Director); (202) 307-3198 (Switchboard)
Fax: (202) 514-6620

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