NOTE: This week, letter-writing will be in Brooklyn, at our favorite anarchist space– The Base. For more information, visit thebasebk.org.
You’ve probably been working too many hours a week to even notice the full-blown war being waged against you by the ruling class. It is real and it is continuing. And of course there is another war– the war against folks imprisoned for their political beliefs and actions. And here’s where we bridge the two. This week, NYC ABC will be hosting our seventh annual May Day card-writing night. We will be sending greeting cards to anarchist political prisoners and there’s an easy (too easy? POSSIBLY!) way for you to help. Just come by, eat some food, sign some cards, maybe meet folks you don’t already know, and show some base level solidarity with those behind bars.
If there’s absolutely no way you can come eat a ton of pizza and sign a lot of May Day cards, but still want to support political prisoners, please consider sending some books from their wish lists.
Cody Lee Sutherlin of the Tinley Park 5 is due to be released from prison in June. So Bloomington ABC, NYC ABC, and Sacramento Prisoner Support have launched a campaign to start a release fund for Cody Lee.
“In May 2012 five antifascists were arrested and, in early 2013, took non-cooperating plea deals for 3 felonies each for taking part in emphatically stopping a meeting of white supremacists organizing under the guise of the Illinois European Heritage Association at a restaurant in Tinley Park, Illinois. For more information, see tinleyparkfive.wordpress.com.
Cody Lee Sutherlin is the third of the five to be released, rejoining us in early June. Bloomington ABC, NYC ABC, and Sacramento Prisoner Support have launched a campaign to start a release fund for Cody Lee. By the time Cody Lee is released he’ll have been locked up for just over two years, will have a felony record, and certain things just won’t be the same. Let’s help him make a smooth transition! Let’s raise some money and secure a release fund that will welcome him upon his release. Your donations will help Cody pay bills and costs of living while he looks for a job; buy a phone; and pay for license plates and insurance for his bike.”
Please remember that prisoner support doesn’t end when a comrade is released. Through halfway houses, supervised release, parole, or probation, there is usually state supervision beyond the initial sentence. Also, prison is traumatic. And of course there is the stigma of being a former prisoner that effects nearly every aspect of one’s life. All of this adds up to the less obvious, but equally necessary, support needed when our loved ones come home. Donate to your ability and show an anti-fascist comrade how we welcome folks home.
If for whatever reason you’d rather donate to Cody Lee offline, please make the check payable to Cody Sutherlin and mail it to:
Sacramento Prisoner Support
Post Office Box 163126
Sacramento, California 95816
If you’d like to write to Cody Lee to let him know you’re thinking of him and that you’re glad he’s getting out soon, he’d love to hear from you. His current address is:
Cody Sutherlin M34021
Robinson Correctional Center
13423 East 1150th Avenue
Robinson, Illinois 62454
BK/NY – April 11th – Benefit for NYC ABC and Wolf Mountain Sanctuary, Featuring As$troland, Lords of Death, Mad Diesel and Felon
WHAT: Punk Show
WHEN: 8:00pm, Friday, April 11th
WHERE: The Swamp – Johnson Avenue, Bushwick, Brooklyn. For exact directions, email email@example.com
COST: $6-$10, sliding scale
EastRev presents a punk show at The Swamp to benefit NYC Anarchist Black Cross and Wolf Mountain Sanctuary.
AS$TROLAND – NYC punk Legends reunited!
MAD DIESEL – BK Powerviolence FFO drinking and violence against the state
LORDS OF DEATH – NYC Dbeat/HC Last show for a while
FELON – New HC punk band from Brooklyn
DJ SABOTATGE SELEKTHA – spinning antifa oi, punk, hxc & more!
Take the L to Montrose Avenue (between Bushwick Avenue and White Street).
Please don’t BYOB!
NO RACIST, RIGHT WING, BACKWARD SHIT ALLOWED!
WHAT: Ryan Shapiro on Fighting to Expose the U.S. Government’s War on Mandela, Occupy, Animal Rights, & More
WHEN: 8:00pm, Wednesday, April 9th
WHERE: The Base – 1302 Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11221 (Directions below)
COST: Free, but donations are appreciated.
Come join NYC ABC and The Base for a discussion with “FOIA Street Fighter” Ryan Shapiro.
Will Potter has called Ryan Shapiro “The FBI’s Worst Nightmare,” and a recent article about Shapiro’s work opened by declaring, “Depending on whom you ask, Ryan Shapiro is either the country’s ‘FOIA superhero’ or a ‘threat to national security.’” Shapiro is a longtime radical social justice activist and now also a PhD candidate in MIT’s Department of Science, Technology, & Society (HASTS). Shapiro’s research focuses on the political functioning of national security and the policing of dissent. To this end, he currently has over 700 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests in motion with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and National Security Agency (NSA), as well as numerous ongoing lawsuits against these agencies for failure to comply with his FOIA requests. The FBI is even now arguing that Shapiro’s dissertation research on FBI campaigns against animal rights and environmental protesters is itself a threat to national security.
A recent revelation resulting from Shapiro’s research is the FBI monitoring of Occupy Houston. As important as the monitoring itself, is the fact that the FBI uncovered a plot to assassinate Occupy “leaders,” yet did not share this information with potentially endangered activists.
Additionally, through his FOIA research and lawsuits against the FBI, Shapiro has exposed FBI attempts to bring Animal Enterprise Terrorism charges against animal rights activists conducting undercover investigations of factory farms. Notably, Shapiro is also one of the plaintiffs in the federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act.
And just last week, Shapiro and his attorney filed a law suit against the NSA, FBI, CIA, and DIA for their failure to comply with Freedom of Information Act requests filed shortly after the death of Nelson Mandela. In this particular series of FOIA requests, Shapiro is trying to determine the role the United States played in Mandela’s 1962 arrest, and to answer why the U.S. government kept Mandela on a terrorist watch list until 2008 and what qualified him as a terrorist in the first place.
We’ve finished the latest version of the NYC ABC “Illustrated Guide to Political Prisoners and Prisoners of War” and it’s available for viewing (and download) by clicking on the tab at the top of this page. This update includes revised mini-bios for several prisoners, the addition of birthdays for the vast majority of the prisoners, and address changes for a few prisoners. Additionally, we removed the MI-CATS 3 (TIME SERVED!), Marshall Eddie Conway (TIME SERVED!), and Fernando González (TIME SERVED!).
WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, April 1st, 2014
WHERE: CAGE – 83A Hester Street (UPSTAIRS) New York, New York 10002 (directions below)
Oh, no, guys! Chris Brown says being in jail is like being a caged animal. Maybe the revelation of a millionaire pop star will shed light on the realities faced by about 1.5 million other prisoners in the United States. Maybe it will lead his legion of fans to call for the abolition of prisons! Or, in all likelihood, it will simply cause logistic problems for court cops at his next appearance date. If nothing else, jailing a pop star exposes more folks to just how shitty imprisonment really is. And that’s where NYC ABC comes in. With our every-other-week letter-writing dinners, we try to remind our comrades that no matter how awful their conditions, they have support on the outside. This week we are writing to three prisoners in California– Chip Fitzgerald, Ruchell “Cinque” Magee, and Hugo “Yogi” Pinell.
Romaine “Chip” Fitzgerald, born and raised in Compton, California, joined the Southern California Chapter of the Black Panther Party in early 1969 as a teenager who had just been released from the California Youth Authority. In September of that year, as a dedicated member of the Party, Chip was arrested in connection with a police shoot-out and tried for assault on police and related charges, including the murder of a security guard. He was sentenced to death.
Commonly regarded as the longest held political prisoner in the U.S., Ruchell Magee has been imprisoned since 1963. He was politicized in prison and participated in the August 7, 1970 Marin County Courthouse Rebellion— the attempted liberation of political prisoner George Jackson and the Soledad Brothers by Jackson’s younger brother Jonathan. Magee was seriously injured in the incident and subsequently pleaded guilty to aggravated kidnapping. He was sentenced in 1975 to life in prison and has been denied parole numerous times.
While Hugo Pinell was imprisoned in San Quentin State Prison he made contact with revolutionary prisoners such as George Jackson, one of the Soledad Brothers and W.L. Nolen. On August 21, 1971, there was a prisoner uprising in Pinell’s housing unit at San Quentin, led by George Jackson. On August 21, 1971, Jackson used a pistol to take over his tier in the Adjustment Center. At the end of the roughly 30 minute rebellion, guards had killed George Jackson, and two other prisoners and three guards were dead. Of the remaining prisoners in the unit, six of them, including Pinell, were put on trial for murder and conspiracy. They were known as The San Quentin Six. Three of them were acquitted of all charges, and three were found guilty of various charges. Pinell was convicted of assault on a guard. Although Pinell was convicted of assault, and another of the San Quentin Six had a murder conviction, only Pinell remains imprisoned.
In the unlikely event that there is a better use of your Tuesday night, but you still want to support the prisoners (or want to send these three a book) you can write to them at:
Romaine Fitzgerald* #B27527
Kern Valley State Prison
Post Office Box 5101
Delano, California 93216
*Address card to Chip
Ruchell Magee* #A92051
California State Prison – Los Angeles County
Post Office Box 8457
Lancaster, California 93539-8457
*Address card to Cinque
Hugo Pinell* #A88401
California State Prison – Sacramento
Post Office Box 290066
Represa, California 95671
*Address card to Yogi Bear