A Critical Resistance Donor Call, April 2017
Our first Donor Call of the year, “The Black Panther Party Ten Point Program: Highlights Today” featured contributors to the latest issue of The Abolitionist newspaper of the same theme. The Pather’s Ten Point Program remains an inspiring and revolutionary document as we organize today. We brought together folks active in fighting for Black and international liberation across multiple contexts: in our communities, inside prisons, and across the walls, barriers and distances that the prison industrial complex imposes. From their multiple vantage points, speakers brought to life the Panther’s method of analysis: making “connections so they are not a diversion, but a deepening of work going on today,” as featured speaker Robyn C. Spencer put it. Here’s the English portion of The Abolitionist Issue 27 so you can read these great articles!
ABOUT OUR SPEAKERS:
Asar Imhotep Amen is author of “Thoughts on Our Current Political Moment: Resisting Trump” in this current issue of The Abolitionist. He is a subscriber of the paper, a writer who has had pieces published in POOR Magazine, The Real Cost of Prisons, and the SF Bay View, and is currently imprisoned at California State Prison – LA County.
Mohamed Shehk is part of the editorial collective for The Abolitionist newspaper. He supports Critical Resistance’s campaigns, coalitions, and projects through his role as the Media and Communications Director at CR.
Robyn C. Spencer is a historian who teaches at Lehman College, CUNY and the author ofThe Revolution has come: Black Power, Gender and the Black Panther Party in Oakland. She is a long time supporter of the movement to free political prisoners, a member of theCampaign to Bring Mumia Home and part of several grassroots initiatives to disseminate the history of the Black Radical Tradition. Robyn contributed the article “The Black Panther Party’s Anti-Imperialist Vision” for Point 8: We Want An Immediate End to All Wars of Aggression in this issue of the paper.
Linda Evans has been fighting for social justice her whole life, to eliminate racism in our society, to win women’s and gay liberation, and to change U.S. foreign and domestic policies. She was active in Students for a Democratic Society and SDS-Weatherman, and a founder of the John Brown Anti-Klan Committee in Texas. In 1985, she was sentenced to 40 years in federal prison for militant actions to protest and change U.S. government policies. While in prison, she was a founding member of Pleasanton AIDS Counseling and Education (an AIDS peer counseling organization) and of the Council Against Racism, a prisoner organization that worked against institutional racism and to lessen racial tensions inside the prison. As an Organizer with All of Us or None, she has worked to build a movement that can win full restoration of all civil and human rights for formerly-incarcerated people. All of Us or None contributed an article on Ban the Box Movement for Point 2: We Want Full Employment For Our People.
Some resource for further learning and action:
Linda Evans, presenting on the Ban the Box campaign with All of Us or None, shared the incredible history and milestone victories of Ban the Box nationally in over 25 states and 150 cities and counties! You can read the Ban The Box in Employment Report here. Linda also offered this yet-unpublished report, Volume 2 of the series: BAN THE BOX in HOUSING, EDUCATION, AND VOTING. A Grassroots History. As Linda said, “Economic justice is a key component of any movement toward and for freedom for Black people.” Because formerly imprisoned people are structurally excluded from employment and basic civic rights, these organizing lessons and victories are so significant to our movement. We hope you take the opportunity learn more about these fights for restoration of rights for people coming home from prisons and jails!
TAKE ACTION TO SUPPORT THIS MOVEMENT:
You can support the advancement of Ban the Box legislation happening in California right now, AB 1008. There is a May 3 action in Sacramento to support SB1008. Learn about the bill and the mobilization here on the public Facebook event. You can listen to the recent radio piece on AB 1008 here on the Legal Services for Prisoner with Children website.
Robyn C. Spencer highlighted the curriculum created by the Dream Defenders “Blacked Out History: Rebellion Curriculum Toolkit,” which can be found here.
Check out more Critical Resistance Donor Calls & Webinars here.