Defeat Pennsylvania’s Prisoner Gag Law!
Free Speech Under Threat from Police & Politicians!
Mumia is the Immediate Target, but We’re All in the Cross-Hairs!
How You Can Help… see below…
07 November 2014 — An outrageous new law threatening the free speech of convicts has been passed in Pennsylvania in a lightning fast process. The chief target of this law? Innocent political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal, and others like him. The perpetrators of this law? The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP), and their lap-dog friends in the state legislature and governor’s mansion of PA. The victims of this law? Convicts like Mumia; non-profits that distribute the writings and speech of convicts; and ultimately the working class and all who oppose this racist, capitalist system.
The new law, the “Re-victimization Relief Act,” enables crime victims—as well as local authorities and the state, using taxpayer funds—to sue any imprisoned convict whose conduct “perpetuates the continuing effect of the crime on the victim,” ie, causes “mental anguish.” This broad and subjective definition could mean anything!
PA Governor: Convicts Have No Rights
This law was hashed together, and quickly passed and signed in reaction to a pre-recorded commencement address to a Goddard College graduating class by Mumia Abu-Jamal, himself a graduate of Goddard College. Mumia’s inspiring address at Goddard said absolutely nothing about his case, yet cops protested at the college entrance; and days later the law was signed by PA Governor Corbett in a ceremony at 13th and Locust in Philadelphia, the spot where Officer Daniel Faulkner was shot to death—by someone other than Mumia—in 1981. Corbett said that “convicted felons in prison have abused and surrendered their rights,” a blatantly false assertion.
Protestors shouted “free Mumia,” and “one-term Tom” at the Governor, which is what he turned out to be after losing his seat in the recent mid-term elections. But the threatening law he signed continues to menace convicts.
“Mumia Bill” Designed to “Shut Him Up”
This new law is just the latest manifestation of the blatant targeting of Mumia, by the very cops, courts and politicians who put him away for a crime he didn’t commit in the first place. Called the “Mumia Bill,” this act was designed to “shut him up” (Philly.com, 07.Oct.2014). It follows a long line of “Mumia rules,” in which courts have literally changed precedent when considering Mumia’s case, only to change back again on other cases later. Will this blatantly unconstitutional law get overturned, or will it be allowed to stand as yet another “Mumia rule,” in defiance of all precedent? We cannot take that chance!
Mumia’s case is just the immediate pretext for this legal atrocity. The danger here is that this blatantly unconstitutional law could have far-reaching effects, even if it does eventually get overturned. What about radio stations such as the Pacifica Network, and non-profit organizations such as Prison Radio, which promote the defense cases, and distribute the writings of Mumia and other convicts, wrongfully convicted or otherwise? They all have the right of free speech!
Lawyers with the Abolitionist Law Center and the Amistad Law Project have joined with Prison Radio (publishers of Mumia’s commentaries) to mount an aggressive defense against this vindictive, so-called “legal” challenge to the right of free speech. These folks need you help!
— Donate Now To Defeat PA’s Prisoner Gag Law —
Mumia has been definitively shown to be innocent of the 1981 crime for which he was convicted. He was the victim of an orchestrated frame-up by cops and prosecutors, who were not only targeting a known leftist and former Black Panther, and not only covering up their own rampant corruption in Philadelphia’s inner city; but they were also covering their probable complicity in the execution of one of their own, who was talking to the Feds about the corruption at the time.
The system has chickened out of trying to execute Mumia, since the evidence of his innocence is so overwhelming. But they’ve confined him to state prison for life without the possibility of parole (LWOP). Our job remains unchanged: Mumia is Innocent! For labor action to free Mumia!
Defeat Pennsylvania’s Prisoner Gag Law!
This message brought to you by:
The Labor Action Committee To Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
PO Box 16222, Oakland CA 94610 • www.laboractionmumia.org • 510.762.2347