[sixties-l] Fwd: Hurricane Carter in S.F./Mumia Rally

From: radman (resist@best.com)
Date: 10/17/00

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    >  By Saul Kanowitz
    >  San Francisco
    >  An overflow crowd of more than 2,000 people filled the
    >  auditorium at Mission High School Oct. 7 for an evening of
    >  solidarity with death-row political prisoner Mumia Abu-
    >  Jamal. The highlight of the evening was a moving personal
    >  account by Rubin "Hurricane" Carter of his 19-year fight for
    >  freedom from inside New Jersey's Trenton State Prison.
    >  Carter was framed for murder by a racist system that
    >  convicted him in spite of his innocence.
    >  "I am a survivor of the American criminal injustice system,"
    >  Carter said. "Spending 20 years in prison, narrowly escaping
    >  the electric chair, it is a great pleasure to be here in San
    >Francisco--in fact, to be anywhere." The crowd responded
    >  with thunderous applause.
    >  Carter drew a parallel between his case and Abu-Jamal's,
    >  explaining, "My case was based on an appeal to racism rather
    >  than reason. Evidence was concealed from the jury. I have
    >  become a symbol to some of a criminal justice system
    >  infected with racism."
    >  The former prize fighter recounted how he maintained his
    >  dignity and determination in prison through many little
    >  actions. He explained that each person in the audience
    >  should not underestimate the effect their individual actions
    >  can have in helping to free Abu-Jamal.
    >  The audience also heard from an array of activists and
    >  celebrities who stood in solidarity with Abu-Jamal. The
    >  prisoner's son, Mazi Jamal, gave a passionate speech about
    >  never having physical contact with his father.
    >  "It is an extremely strange experience to hear people talk
    >  with so much passion about my family," Jamal said. "I see it
    >  in people's eyes, how genuine people feel about my father."
    >  Pam Africa of International Concerned Family & Friends of
    >  Mumia Abu-Jamal commented on the absence of major corporate
    >  media from the event. "The media are not here because they
    >  are shamed by this room because it is full. We are
    >  victorious. Pick up those phones. At what time do we shut
    >  them [the media] down?"
    >  Leonard Weinglass, Abu-Jamal's lead attorney, gave a brief
    >  update on the case. Weinglass said one major difference
    >  between Abu-Jamal's situation and Carter's was due to the
    >  1996 Effective Death Penalty Act, which basically repealed
    >  the constitutional right of habeas corpus--an independent
    >  federal review--for death-row prisoners.
    >  President Hari Dillon and Chair Walter Riley of the Vanguard
    >  Public Foundation, a sponsor of the event, presented checks
    >  to Weinglass and Africa to support the legal defense and
    >  organizing efforts.
    >  Standing with Dillon and Riley was actor and activist Danny
    >  Glover, who said: "I want to remind us there is a context in
    >  which we look at Mumia's case. We have to talk about the
    >  draconian Rockefeller drug laws, women's right to choice and
    >  globalization. To be involved is to be included in all those
    >  things."
    >  Michael Franti, a dynamic progressive artist, brought people
    >  to their feet with a spoken word performance entitled "Give
    >  the Corporations Some Complications." Michael Africa
    >  followed with a rap piece about police abuses in
    >  Philadelphia.
    >  Walter Johnson, head of the San Francisco Labor Council, and
    >  Jack Heyman, president of Longshore and Warehouse union
    >  Local 10, offered the solidarity of the labor movement.
    >  Former political prisoner Angela Davis asked the audience
    >  "to renew our commitment to free Mumia. The state needs to
    >  be deprived forever of the power to kill."
    >  The event was organized by the Bay Area Mobilization to Free
    >  Mumia Abu-Jamal.
    >  -------------------------
    >  Via Workers World News Service
    >  Reprinted from the Oct. 19, 2000
    >  issue of Workers World newspaper
    >  -------------------------

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