Posts Tagged ‘Herman Wallace’

Nearly 100 in the streets for NYC ABC NYE Noise Demo

NYE 2013 reportback graphicThere is a superstition that says we should leave money outside and bring it in on New Year’s Day to insure financial prosperity for the year. We in NYC ABC are hoping this idea can be extended. On January 1st, NYC had Lynne Stewart brought home and we hope this is an omen that many more of our imprisoned comrades come home to us this year.

On the night before Lynne Stewart’s flight from Texas, we heeded the international call for a night of New Year’s Eve noise demos. We held ours outside of MCC New York— the federal Metropolitan Correctional Center that currently holds local anarchist grand jury resister Jerry Koch and until the time of his recent sentencing imprisoned anarchist hacker Jeremy Hammond.

The night was raucous, with over 70 folks coming to show solidarity with prison rebels on the other side of the wall. Warehoused in a brick and mortar tower, we could see the silhouetted outlines of prisoners in their cells.

Screen Shot 2014-01-01 at 5.10.14 PM
Photo courtesy of Tim Eastman

Occasionally lights would flicker, letting us know that we were connecting. As a makeshift marching band members of Rude Mechanical Orchestra— augmented by air horns, pots & pans, and an assortment of drums, forced lower Manhattan awake, some folks from Stop the Anarchist Witch-hunt (SAW) served up hot cocoa.

Amidst anti-police and anti-prison chants, folks were making their solidarity known— with raised voices and the clamor of assorted noise-makers.

By about 11:00pm, with the crowd energetic, but on the verge of hypothermia, the following statement was read as a call and response, insuring that our comrades inside could hear it:
“To many it feels like we live in a time like no other with surveillance and repression at every turn, but also resistance, rebellion, and open revolt. This is neither the new golden nor dark age, it is simply another moment in time where we can collectively force conflict with a  fucked up system.

Every day there are revolts of varying scale, most of which you never hear about. For those captured in revolt, we come together in protest and celebration. Through the din of revelry and rage, we tie ourselves to those who suffer systematized white supremacy and war against the working class, behind steel bars and safety glass.

Prison is a means of social control to be absolutely destroyed.

Here’s to the total destruction of a prison-based society!

Tonight we bring with us the courage of Sundiata Acoli, the ferocity of Joe-Joe Bowen, the wisdom of Russell Maroon Shoatz.

We remember in every act of rebellion against the state, our deceased comrade Herman Wallace— your legacy will never be forgotten.

We hold in our hearts comrades soon to be or recently imprisoned: Jerry Koch, Kevin Olliff, Rebecca Rubin, and Brian Vaillancourt.


The refrain of those last four words was screamed out, time and again. Not long after, folks left in small groups, making sure not to be snatched up by any of the myriad cops who would happily see us on the other side of the wall.

In Memory of Herman Wallace

herman wallace birthday card 2013Part of what NYC ABC does as part of our every-other-week political prisoner letter-writing dinners is pass around cards to be signed for imprisoned comrades who have birthdays in the following two weeks. Our current cards are handmade, donated by comrades in New York Year Zero.

It was during our last letter-writing that we got the incredible news that Herman Wallace had been released. We decided to hold the card until we had a stable address to which we could send Herman’s card. In the few short days that followed, Herman Wallace died. We decided that the best way to honor Herman is to show how much love was being sent to him from a small event in Chinatown, NYC. Rest In Peace/Rest In Power, Herman Wallace.

The unfortunate reality is that we have an entire population of aging comrades. If we don’t start to work on ways to get them free, and soon, we will be forced to watch what happened to Herman play itself out again and again, celebrating three days of freedom as a victory and wondering what we could have done differently. This is not an indictment, but rather a hopeful wake up call.

NYC – Tuesday, October 1st – Birthday Cards for Imprisoned Comrades

WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, October 1st, 2013
WHERE: CAGE83A Hester Street (UPSTAIRS) New York, New York 10002 (directions below)
COST: Free

file in the birthday cakeIt’s no secret that winter is the baby-making season and that leaves October as the month with the most birthdays. As we know, our imprisoned comrades are folks coming from the same movements as us, not some rare breed of super-human. As a result a disproportionate number of them also share October births. In fact, there are so many upcoming political prisoner birthdays that NYC ABC is focusing our entire upcoming political prisoner letter-writing dinner on sending cards to them. So come join us for some good food and sign a whole gang of cards. We’ll see you for supper.
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BK/NY – Tuesday, January 3rd – Letter-Writing to the Angola 3

What: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
When: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, January 3rd, 2012
Where: 885 Park Avenue, Brooklyn, New York (see below for directions)
Cost: Free

First: Happy New Year! If you didn’t get a chance to come to the New Year’s Eve noise demonstration we organized, please take the time to read this reportback. To hear over 200 people calling out the names of comrades lost and those most recently imprisoned was motivating. So much so, in fact, that folks had to take that energy into the streets. And much of that energy still lingers, pushing us to continue the work of supporting our comrades who are still in prison. By now, you probably know that one way we do that is through every-other-week political prisoner letter-writing dinners. We’ve lost count, but this week’s dinner will be about the 120th we’ve hosted. This week we are focusing on the Angola 3.

The Angola 3 are three black liberationists who, while inside prison, made contact with members of the Black Panther Party. In 1971, this led to the creation of a prison chapter of the BPP. The men then organized prisoners to build a movement within the walls to desegregate the prison, to end systematic rape and violence, for better living conditions, and worked as jailhouse lawyers helping prisoners file legal papers. They organized multiple strikes and sit-ins for better conditions. Still in prison, Shaka Cinque and Herman Wallace were convicted of the 1972 murder of a prison guard. The third member of the Angola 3, Robert Hillary King, has been released and continues to speak out on behalf of his comrades. It is widely held that these men were framed in retaliation to their organizing, convicted under a wholly racist justice system, and systematically tortured via housing in solitary confinement for decades on end.
More info:

If for some insane reason you can’t make it out, but still want to support the prisoners, you can write to them at:
Herman Wallace #76759
Elayn Hunt Correctional Center
Post Office Box 174
Saint Gabriel, Louisiana 70776-0174

Albert Woodfox* #72148
David Wade Correctional Center – N1A
670 Bell Hill Road
Homer, Louisiana 71040
NOTE: Address the envelope to Albert Woodfox, but the letter to Shaka Cinque

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