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Posts Tagged ‘Hunger Strike’

Rest In Power Hugo “Yogi Bear” Pinell

hugoOn Wednesday, August 12th, our comrade in the struggle for revolution, Hugo “Yogi Bear” Pinell was murdered. The context for his murder remains unclear, save for the fact that it happened in the midst of a prison riot. We have no faith that the state will do anything to determine how or why Yogi Bear was murdered and presume cops and corrections officers are relishing his death. We do not doubt the possibility that he was specifically targeted and those in authority did nothing to protect him.

In the early 1970s, while imprisoned in San Quentin State Prison, Hugo Pinell 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. 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. Together, 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.

Activists in prison to this day continue to mark the San Quentin prison rebellion and death of Black Liberation prisoners during Black August, often with fasting.

Although Pinell was convicted of assault, and another of the San Quentin Six had a murder conviction, only Pinell remained imprisoned at the time of his death. During his astounding 50 years of imprisonment, Pinell was primarily held in solitary confinement. Though not as active in his political organizing as in his youth, Pinell was part of the historic hunger strikes that spread throughout the California prison system in 2013 to protest the treatment of prisoners held in solitary confinement.

According to his attorney, shortly before the August 12th, 2015 riot, Hugo Pinell was transferred to general population, though the threat of harm and history of threats against him were known to prison officials.

In this month of Black August, we raise a fist for Yogi Bear and all prison rebels—you will have neither lived nor died in vain.

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BK/NY – Tuesday, October 11th – Commemorate the Legacy of the Black Panthers

What: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
When: 7pm (sharp), Tuesday, October 11th, 2011
Where: 885 Park Avenue, Brooklyn, New York (see below for directions)
Cost: Free

It could very well be that folks in the United States are fed up. Fed up with the state and capitalism, fed up with the authorities in their lives that keep pushing and pushing and pushing, fed up with bosses, with landlords, with cops, wardens, and commanding officers. While far from flawless, Occupy Wall Street and its successors have given form to the anger and potential we share. At the same time, over 12,000 prisoners in California continue to protest the inhumane conditions and fucked up policies under which many of them are imprisoned. And their hunger strike is spreading.

In this same month, we must acknowledge a significant anniversary. It was in October, 1966 that the Black Panther Party was founded. Much of the movement we see today, in the streets on in prisons, has a direct lineage to the Panthers. It is with that in mind that we focus our every-other-week political prisoner letter-writing dinner.

This time around, we’ll be focusing on current political prisoners and prisoners of war who were members of the original Black Panther Party. As there are currently twenty Panther political prisoners or prisoners of war, we will be hosting a card-signing, with additional information available for those able to write a separate letter or begin a correspondence.
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OWS – 8 Oct – Join Us To Send Cards to Political Prisoners and Hunger Strikers

WHAT: Letter and card writing for PPs, POWs, and prisoners on hunger strike in California
WHERE: Zuccotti Park (Liberty Street and Broadway, New York, New York)
WHEN: 11:00am-2:00pm Saturday, October 8th
COST: FREE!

We’re joining comrades from Resistance in Brooklyn (RnB) in a ‘write in’ to political prisoners and hunger strike prisoners with Occupy Wall Street protesters at the park on Saturday the 8th at 11am. RnB have already spoken to some of the protesters who are up for it. As RnB wrote, “We have been encouraged to do this to bring the unjust, racist criminal justice [system] into the lists of grievances.”