Tag Archives: strategy

Black Liberation and the Abolition of the Prison Industrial Complex

From TrueLeapPress.com

Black Liberation and the Abolition of the Prison Industrial Complex

An Interview with Rachel Herzing


Rachel Herzing lives and works in Oakland, CA, where she fights the violence of policing and imprisonment. She is a co-founder of Critical Resistance, a national grassroots organization dedicated to abolishing the prison industrial complex and the Co-Director of the StoryTelling & Organizing Project, a community resource sharing stories of interventions to interpersonal harm that do not rely on policing, imprisonment, or traditional social services. The following interview was conducted by the True Leap Publishing Collective.


True Leap Press (TLP): Hi Rachel, thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview. We are excited to have you as a contributor in this inaugural edition of Propter Nos. Our publishing collective thinks the specific timing of this issue is important to highlight, as it is set to be released in the closing days of Black August. Could you possibly explain what Black August is for our readers, and why it is so important for people to recognize today?

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Letter on the March 11th Lockdown, Stillwater Prison, MN

from Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee

Salutations to my fellow soldiers of our rights,

I would like to share some vital information that may be pertinentPICfamily-624x874 to anyone who is interested in fighting for the working/lower class of America. This is a clear example of unity. It is proof that if we all come together we can be a force to be reckoned with.

As I sit on lockdown in Stillwater after the events that took place on March 11th, 2016 in the chow-hall, I feel a real feeling of contentment. A-west stood up for the rights of our community, the small rights we have left that is. They have taken so much from us in the past, things that I have never had the privilege to experience, but loved ones who have been incarcerated for years have explained. At a time there used to be so many things that have been snatched away from our community, such as quality food, the 4th of July picnic, freedom to watch adult rated movies and magazines, and a curfew set by 9:25pm. I would like to touch on each of these topics. Continue reading

IWOC Support + Advice – Four Key Holes

from Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee

The IWW’s Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee is coming along powerfully and is getting closer and closer to a movement moment where we explode onto the national scene through the work of our powerful inside organizers and outside supporters.

Yet we have some significant holes in IWOC’s infrastructure and hope some of you have suggestions for people–inside or outside of the IWW–who could help fill some of the most important ones, or ideas for how to best focus our efforts in those areas.


1. Delegate Mentors: people with significant IWW-style on the job organizing experience who want to help mentor delegates in prisons. This would likely be remotely via phone and letters. We could also use people to help mentor in new outside groups. This is the key barrier to us having a collective national temperature and building branches and an Industrial Union.

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Update on Ely State Prison, NV Hunger Strike

Yesterday, five of the original six protesters ended their hunger strike when personal demands had been met. Three strikers have since been moved out of Disciplinary Segregation.
Thank you to everyone who helped! They greatly appreciate your support.
The fight is not over:
Two of the strikers are still being held in Segregation. One of them, Marcus Hagerman, was told he’d be moved out before administration suddenly changed their mind with no explanation. Marcus strongly believes that he is being targeted. Guards are treating him differently, and Warden Renee Baker is alleging him to be the leader of these actions. As a result, Marcus has gone back on hunger strike (solo).

He will continue until ALL his demands are met.
Please take a few minutes to send him a letter and show your support:

Marcus Hagerman #1093533
Box 1989
Ely, NV 89301-1989

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Give The Pigs Their Jobs Back: Resistance IS Key – The Passive Approach Just Isn’t Working In Texas Prisons

by Kevin “Rashid” Johnson, Minister of Defense, New Afrikan Black Panther Party (Prison Chapter)


The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) has been operating as a money making business, run by corrupt wardens and administrative personnel, since the beginning of the 20th century.

This revolving door style of bad actors in high places is no different than what we see in mainstream politics (notably the presidential campaign). Before one is elected; banquets are held, credentials are flashed, and promises are made to change the current state of the prison system – or in other words, make it better.

These phony baloney candidates pretend to be in opposition with one another but they all share the same goal – making money. This is the reason why Republicrat Hillary Clinton jumped on the Obama bandwagon immediately after losing her shot at being the first female president. She opportunistically took the secretary of state gig as a back door to pick up the pieces after Obama left.

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The Struggle Inside & Out: Supporting Prisoner Strikes

From Prison Pipeline on KBOO radio.

Free Alabama Movement May Day Work Stoppage Interview

From Truth-Out.org

Free Alabama Movement May Day Work Stoppage Interview

Friday, 27 May 2016 00:00 By Ben Turk, Speakout | Interview

From May 1 to May 9, 2016, prisoners at multiple facilities across Alabama engaged in work stoppages, refusing to labor for the Alabama Department of Corrections. This strike was the second major work stoppage in prisons this spring. In April, prisoners in Texas refused to work for most of the month. The striking Alabama prisoners, along with revolutionary prisoners in other states, have also called for a nationally coordinated work stoppage and protest September 9 of this year, the 45th anniversary of the Attica rebellion.

At the end of the strike, we interviewed Free Alabama Movement (FAM) cofounder Kinetik Justice Amun to get a deeper understanding of the context and strategy of their work stoppage, as well as a better understanding of the state’s response and possible strategic lessons going forward. Kinetik has been held in solitary confinement at Holman Correctional since 2014 as retaliation for FAM’s work stoppage that January.

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Kinetik Justice and The Free Alabama Movement

12549113_1689257571353128_3652465867450969853_nPeace, Blessings and Revolutionary Greetings!

First and foremost, I’m honored that the Creative Energy and the Spirit of Our Ancestors have brought us all together, at this time and in this space. . . Amun Ra!

I am Kinetik Justice Amun (g/n Robert Earl Council), a New Afrikaans Political Prisoner of War. 22 years ago at the age of 20, I defended myself by shooting and killing a white man whose intent was to bring about bodily harm to me.
The white man I killed was a  U. S. National Guardsman Ronald Henderson, the son of a predominant family of affluence and cousin to Mayor in Enterprise, Alabama. The tragedy which I am serving a capital murder sentence of life without parole was a set up for my demise due to relationships of white privilege. As police officers intimidated and coerced the only eye witness, the judge appointed M. Dale Marsh, a friend of Mr. Henderson, as (my) Robert Earl Council’s lead attorney, the D. A. Empanelled an all-white jury and the judge assured a guilty verdict by amending the indictment with his jury instruction. Adding in an additional element of robbery to seal my fate to a capital murder charge. Continue reading

How to Support Prisoner Resistance

What support means now:

See up to date detailed suggestions and ideas at It’s Going Down and their one month out update.

1. Spread the word into prisons.  – Send word about the strike and the upsurge in prisoner resistance activities in to as many prisoners as you can. Find various things to mail in at our resources page. If you are connected with a prisoner newsletter, prisoners’ families, a books to prisoners or prison pen-pals project, get word to those contacts. If prison mailrooms are practicing censorship, contact us and we’ll give you suggestions on how to fight back.  If you aren’t connected to any such groups, contact us and we’ll either plug you in with folks we already know are active in your area, or help you get something off the ground.

2. Spread the word outside of prisons. -stories of prisoner‘s struggles are starting to break through the typical informal media embargo / hostility against prisoner perspectives. The more we circulate these stories, engage in solidarity actions, organize events and workshops, the harder it will be for society to ignore these struggles. Find articles and stories to share here. Join and share the event on Facebook. Sign up for our contact list, forward our emails to friends and encourage them to sign up as well. Endorse the strike, and encourage any organization you are a member of to do the same.

3. Build and demonstrate outside support. -the prisoners have called for rallies at DOC offices, McDonald’s and other companies who profit from prison labor. Visible protests and actions let prisoners know who and how many have their backs, and helps them determine tactics and strategies. Here’s a list of dates and opportunities to mobilize.  If there aren’t people in your area already engaged with this work, contact IWOC, who are devoting significant resources to branch building and establishing a strong nationally-networked outside support infrastructure.  If you support this work, but cannot engage with it yourself, please donate to IWOC or another prisoner support project.


What support means on September 9th

1. Direct action at prisons. – The strategy of the Free Alabama Movement calls for demonstrations at prisons themselves, ideally at a timing or level of engagement that joins the prisoners in disrupting the routine operations (ie the slavery and torture) of the institutions.

2. Demonstrations. – If you can’t make it to a prison, or risk direct action, showing up in visible protests at DOC central office, government buildings, politician’s offices or the headquarters or franchises of companies who profit from prison slavery is a great way to show support. If your demonstration gets mainstream media attention, that presents a larger challenge to prison mailroom censors. You can also help control the narrative, which typically blames and villainizes prisoners out the gate.

3. Oversight. -Prisoners who protest their conditions are routinely put into worse conditions. They are punished, beaten, transferred, stripped naked and held in restraint positions for hours. They are electrocuted, pepper sprayed, thrown in “observation” or “suicide cells”, sometimes force fed, sometimes assaulted with hammers. Prison staff are given broad leeway to torture their captives. If we can get lawyers, politicians, reputable non-profits and investigative journalists asking questions, representing prisoners and providing oversight, it will check the retaliation.