WHAT: Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinner
WHEN: 7pm sharp, Tuesday, March 17th, 2015
WHERE: The Base – 1302 Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn, New York 11221 (directions below)
NOTE: The Base is on the ground floor, is wheelchair accessible, and has a gender neutral toilet.
Are any of us surprised that frat boys in Oklahoma (or virtually anywhere else) are vile, basic ass racists? Of course they are. And they are the same dudes who go on to be the heads of industry and the leaders of government. The only surprise is that they let it slip in such a public way. And the fraternity is as grounded in white supremacy as the rest of this country. As long as we’re discussing current events, we’ll mention the new campaign to welcome home soon to be released prisoner Brent Betterly. To coincide with this campaign, and since it’s time again for the every-other-week NYC ABC political prisoner letter-writing dinner, we’re focusing on the remaining NATO 3 prisoners.
The NATO 3 were arrested on May 16, 2012 in the lead up to the anti-NATO protests in Chicago, Illinois. They were originally charged with 11 felony counts under the Illinois state version of the USA Patriot Act including material aid for terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism & possession of an incendiary device. What surfaced after their arrest were that two undercover cops, “Mo” and “Gloves” had been trying to entrap these three activists and others as part of Chicago’s surveillance & targeting of the local activist community. The NATO 3 went to trial on January 21, 2014, were acquitted of all terrorism counts on February 7. They were found guilty of possession of an incendiary device with the intent to commit arson, possession of an incendiary device with the knowledge that another intended to commit arson and mob action. On April 25, 2014, Brian Church was sentenced to five years, Brent Betterly to six years, and Jared Chase to eight years. In November 2014, Brian Church was released on parole. In February 2015, Maya Chase announced that she is transgender. Please take note to address envelopes to her state name, Jared.
More information: freethenato3.wordpress.com
We expect to see you on Tuesday. If you can’t make it, please take the time to write letters (and send books) to the prisoners:
Brent Betterly M44724
Sheridan Correctional Center
4017 East 2603 Road
Sheridan, Illinois 60551
Maya Chase M44710
Dixon Correctional Center
2600 North Brinton Avenue
Dixon, Illinois 61021
*Address envelope to Jared Chase.
WHAT: Puppet Show History of the Prison Industrial Complex
WHEN: 7:00-9:00pm, Tuesday, July 12th
WHERE: Book Thug Nation [100 North Third Street, Between Berry Street and Wythe Avenue, Brooklyn]
COST: Free, but we’re passing a hat (Roadshows need loot to travel. Otherwise, they’re just shows).
Join NYC ABC and Book Thug Nation as we welcome a traveling puppet show of a history of the Prison Industrial Complex from slavery to where it is today. There will also be some other road show elements and presentations as well as a few anti-capitalist fairy tales using rod puppets. The roadshow is a product of the Mysterious Rabbit Puppet Army, whose past work highlighted security culture in the midst of the feds and cops working to destroy our movements and communities.
The tour will raise awareness about the Prison Industrial Complex and the ways in which police and policing hurt our communities.
“Our goal in this tour is to use art to explore these relationships and brainstorm with our audiences how we can fight this brutally racist system,” said Mysterious Puppeteer Michael Snacks.
The United States currently imprisons nearly 3 million people. About 6.5 million people are presently under some form of supervision within the criminal justice system. Racism continues to be a major factor in the United States, illustrated by policies and programs that sustain white supremacy. Racism, as it is used through criminal laws that target people of color, is essential to prisons, not accidental. The Prison Industrial Complex is also fueled by dramatic and racist reporting about “crime,” “delinquency,” and “rebellion,” creating a culture of fear. As a result, people (primarily people of color, youth, and the poor) are locked in cages for longer and longer in the interests of “public safety.” The way the many parts of the Prison Industrial Complex interact is exactly what makes it so powerful and destructive. In order to fight this system, we have to recognize what drives and shapes it.
These shows are child-friendly and we greatly encourage you to bring younger folks to this event. The focus is not sub-culture specific, in an attempt to make it more appealing to a larger number of folks.