Thursday, April 15, 2021

Mumia Abu-Jamal is Scheduled for Open-Heart Surgery --Racism Remains the Greatest Medical Threat to Mumia’s Health

Note from the Jamal Journal: As of Friday morning, April 16, we still have no confirmation whether the surgery is happening today. We do not know when it has been scheduled for. This is because Dr. Alvarez has not been given enough information. Please check back for updates.

(Click here to get updates and watch the April 15 press conference hosted by Marc Lamont Hill, with Angela Davis, Pam Africa, Dr. Ricardo Alvarez, and others)

Mumia Abu-Jamal is Scheduled for Open-Heart Surgery 

--Racism Remains the Greatest Medical Threat to Mumia’s Health

By Dr. Ricardo Alvarez, consulting physician for Mumia Abu-Jamal

(A new Medical Professionals for Mumia petition co-written by Dr. Alvarez is reprinted at the bottom of this article. Read the February 1982 article "A Christmas Cage," Mumia Abu-Jamal's personal account of his arrest, hospitalization, and imprisonment.)

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

BREAKING: Urgent Call to Action! Mumia Abu-Jamal had exploratory surgery, blocked arteries found, new heart surgery scheduled (We Demand No Shackling!)


Watch the April 15 press conference here.


BREAKING:  
II
II
II
II
II
II
Please sign our new Color of Change petition to PBS Independent Lens asking to "Please give more airtime to the case of Mumia Abu-Jamal"


TAKE ACTION:  Color of Change petition to DA Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia's Unjust Conviction!  II  Let Mumia Out! (resource page for Phone call-in campaign and more)  II  Color of Change petition to PA Gov. Tom Wolf: Release Our Loved Ones!  II  Change.org petition from France for Mumia to PA Gov Wolf

(PHOTO: Screen shot of the SF Bay View National Black Newspaper's March 28 front page lead story: Pam Africa responds to DA Krasner's Feb. 3 brief. The photo shown at the top of the SFBV website is of Mumia Abu-Jamal, then and now, taken at March 12, 2021 protest outside DA Krasner's office. Pam Africa, with the Jamal Journal Newspaper in hand, presented new photos of Mumia since the recent health emergency began alongside photos of Mumia when he was healthier. Photo by Jamal Journal staff photographer Joe Piette. View more photos from March 12 here.)


WATCH:  Todd Burroughs and Michael Schiffman on Mumia's health emergency: “They’ve said it. We’re not talking symbolically here. It is the goal of the State of Pennsylvania to kill him."  II  Pam Africa interviewed by Eddie Conway: "Mumia needs everybody's help right now...Do whatever you can do."


(Recent photo of Mumia's leg: full of sores and bloody wounds like this now cover his entire body.)

Sunday, March 21, 2021

The Jamal Journal #1 Online Newspaper --Now fundraising to print Issue #2, to reprint Issue #1, and for postage costs

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction


(This is one segment of the original artwork created by longtime Mumia supporter Seth Tobocman to support our petition campaign--Thanks Seth!. It is the centerpiece (pgs. 20-21) of our newspaper and can be viewed on our website here.)

--Please support the Jamal Journal by donating here.
  
(www.bit.ly/JamalJournal) 


The Jamal Journal issue #1 Table of Contents:

The Petition to DA Krasner

Pam Africa's Message to the Movement: People Power Will Free Mumia!

Johanna Fernández on Interviewing Mumia's Sister Lydia Barashango about Kenneth Freeman

Colin Kaepernick Supports Mumia

Mumia Honors Frances Goldin

Mumia FAQ: Reprinted from BringMumiaHome.com

Free Sundiata Acoli!

Free Ed Poindexter!

Free Russell 'Maroon' Shoatz!

Angela Davis Supports Mumia

Claude Guillaumaud-Pujol: Liberons Mumia!

Mumia at UC Santa Cruz

Introduction to Murder Incorporated, Vol. 3

Linn Washington: Supreme Corruption in PA

Dave Lindorff: Maureen Faulkner's King's Bench Appeal Denied

How the DA Suppressed Evidence of Kenneth Freeman's Presence at the Scene

How the DA Suppressed Pedro Polakoff's Crime Scene Photos

How Judge Sabo Blocked Testimony From Officer Gary Wakshul About the Fake "Hospital Confession" 

How Veronica Jones Defied Police, Prosecutorial, and Judicial Intimidation

How Judge Sabo Blocked the Jury From Knowing Robert Chobert's Probation Status

Seth Tobocman's Artwork for DA Krasner Petition

From The Archives: Dave Lindorff on the 2008 Third Circuit Ruling (Batson and more)

Mumia Abu-Jamal Says Goodnight to Kiilu Nyasha

From The Archives: Kiilu Nyasha on Observing Judge Sabo in 1995, "Witness to a Lynching"

From The Archives: Michael Schiffmann on Judge Sabo, "Justice is Just an Emotional Feeling"

From The Archives: Michael Schiffmann on the Third Circuit's 2008 Batson Denial

From The Archives: J. Patrick O’Connor on the 2009 US Supreme Court Ruling

From The Archives: Linn Washington Jr. Reviews “The Framing of Mumia Abu-Jamal”

From The Archives: Yale RebLaw Conference Rescinds Keynote Offer to Philly DA Krasner

From The Archives: The Pedro Polakoff Crime Scene Photos: 20 FAQs --written in 2007 by Educators for Mumia Abu-Jamal and Journalists for Mumia

From The Archives: Freiheit für Mumia Abu-Jamal! German Book Reveals New Evidence in Death-Row Case (a review of Race Against Death by Dr. Michael Schiffmann)

From The Archives: 2010 Ballistics Test Performed By Dave Lindorff and Linn Washington, Jr. Proves That Robert Chobert and Cynthia White Lied at Mumia’s 1982 Trial

Even Before Linn Washington Jr. and Dave Lindorff's 2010 Ballistics Test, There Were Already Serious Problems With the Ballistics Evidence Used to Convict Mumia

On the Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021 episode of WURD's Radio Courtroom, hosted by attorney Michael Coard, Pam Africa announced the release of the Jamal Journal issue #1, our newly restarted newspaper, last published in the mid-1990s by the uncompromising International Concerned Family and Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal (ICFFMAJ). 

Sunday, March 14, 2021

Mumia Abu-Jamal's Health Emergency: The Only Treatment is Freedom --An interview with physician consultant Dr. Ricardo Alvarez

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction

March 20 Health Update from Dr. Ricardo Alvarez (Mumia does not currently require hospitalization, so we are asking supporters to keep taking action, but please remove "hospitalization" from your list of demands):

Mumia is now in the general population. Thanks to worldwide support he is relatively stable but we remain vigilant as to the monitoring of his care. The only true treatment can be freedom. He continues to suffer from his conditions of incarceration- liver cirrhosis from Hepatitis C, Congestive Heart Failure, a severe debilitating skin condition, hypertension, diabetes. He will continue to need to monitoring and his prognosis is guarded.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Pam Africa’s Message to the Movement: Please Sign Our Color of Change Petition to DA Krasner! People Power Will Free Mumia!

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction


(PHOTO: ICFFMAJ Coordinator Pam Africa speaks in support of Mumia at Philadelphia City Hall in 2005.)

Pam Africa’s Message to the Movement: Please Sign Our Petition to DA Krasner! People Power Will Free Mumia

--Written by Pam Africa, the coordinator of the uncompromising International Concerned Family & Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal (ICFFMAJ)

(View/download a flyer of Pam's Message here)

(Pam's Message was published at Black Agenda Report on Feb. 24, 2021)

Welcome to our first issue of the newly restarted Jamal Journal. We last published the Jamal Journal in the mid-1990s, and today we are excited to launch our newspaper and website (www.JamalJournal.com) at this absolutely critical time. 

Mumia’s health has improved somewhat since he nearly died from a diabetic coma that was induced by untreated Hepatitis-C. After we won a lawsuit against the prison authorities, Mumia finally received treatment and fully recovered from Hepatitis C. 

Unfortunately, the Hepatitis C also gave Mumia cirrhosis of the liver, and this is a very serious health problem that is made even worse by the conditions of his imprisonment. Just this month, Mumia reports that the severe itching, a symptom experienced previously, is returning and he does not know why.  Mumia is 66 and it has now been 39 years since his arrest on December 9, 1981. This is an urgent situation, folks, and we need your help.

The Petition to DA Krasner

The Jamal Journal’s lead story is our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner, demanding that he stop defending Mumia’s conviction and that he secure Mumia’s release as quickly as he possibly can.

Sign the Color of Change Petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction and Release Him As Soon As You Possibly Can!

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction

(UPDATE: On March 11, our petition was changed to add information about Mumia's new health emergency. The original petition was released only a few days before we first learned about Mumia's health crisis. The call for Mumia's release stays the same but it is now even more urgent.)


(This is one segment of the original artwork created by Seth Tobocman to support our petition campaign. It is the centerpiece of our newspaper and can be viewed on the website here. Special thanks to longtime Mumia supporter Seth Tobocman!)


Dear Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner,

We, the signers of this petition declare:

Mumia Abu-Jamal is currently suffering from COVID-19, congestive heart disease, liver damage, and a worsening of a severe and debilitating chronic skin condition. The cirrhosis of the liver and increased likelihood of liver cancer resulted from his untreated Hepatitis C in spring 2014. His Hep C went untreated for nearly two years until attorneys secured a preliminary injunction that forced the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections to meet basic national treatment guidelines and give him the fast acting anti viral Hep C cure. In addition, Mumia was treated with topical steroids for his skin condition, which caused a diabetic reaction. Prison medical staff neglected to monitor and follow up on their own chart notations for three weeks! His unmonitored glucose levels resulted in a severely high glucose level resulting in ketoacidosis, requiring Mumia to be rushed to the ICU. Mumia Abu-Jamal now relies upon that very same prison healthcare system, the prison infirmary, for treatment during his current health crisis. Our collective call for Abu-Jamal’s release could not be more urgent. As Abu-Jamal’s physician Dr. Ricardo Alvarez says: The Only Treatment is Freedom.

Even without the current health emergency, Mumia Abu-Jamal’s 1982 conviction was already a travesty of justice, obtained through a combination of police, prosecutorial, and judicial misconduct, as documented by Amnesty International. Abu-Jamal has suffered from extreme injustice at all levels of the criminal justice system. These numerous improprieties have tainted Abu-Jamal’s conviction beyond repair.

Before her death, Mumia’s sister, Lydia Barashango said that she and her family suspected Kenneth Freeman was the actual shooter of Police Officer Daniel Faulkner --An interview with Johanna Fernández

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction
(This is one segment of the original artwork created by Seth Tobocman to support our petition campaign. It is the centerpiece of our newspaper and can be viewed on the website here.)


The Jamal Journal interviews Johanna Fernández, co-director of the 2009 film Justice onTrial and the founder of the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home

Jamal Journal:  How did you become interested in Mumia Abu-Jamal’s case and ultimately decide to co-direct your 2009 film Justice on Trial?

Johanna Fernández:  Although I was not a filmmaker, a moment in the classroom inspired the project. In 2005, I’d started visiting Mumia on death row at SCI Greene in Western, PA’s the Supermax prison, an hour away from Pittsburgh. I was teaching at Carnegie Mellon University, and I started visiting him on the suggestion of Professor Emeritus David Demarest.

In 2009, my work on the film Justice on Trial, accelerated. It was at Carnegie Mellon in 2009 that Mumia first spoke live from Death Row to my civil rights movement seminar. Waiting for the call was a nail-biting experience. And this was Mumia’s second attempt to call into a college classroom, ever. A few weeks earlier, the first scheduled conversation coincided with an unannounced shutdown of the prison’s telephone system. But this time the call came through.

The students’ exchange with Mumia was chilling. And his answer to the final question one of them posed hit us all in the gut. The students asked Mumia to reflect on the significance of his political impact from death row, in light of the travesty of his case. Mumia responded by saying  “I don’t believe in Martyrdom.” This statement still lingers with me today and it strongly influenced the movie we went on to make. 

New artwork by Seth Tobocman illustrates our petition calling for DA Krasner to stop defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's conviction

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction


 Click directly on the image to enlarge it.

This original artwork by Seth Tobocman was generously created to support our petition campaign. Tobocman says to Krasner: “It is because of the work of incarcerated intellectuals like Mumia Abu-Jamal that a mass movement arose for criminal justice reform. If you feel you are part of that movement, we ask you to show Mumia Abu-Jamal the respect he deserves as an elder and predecessor. Show us that it is a new day in Philadelphia. Release Mumia Abu-Jamal.”

Friday, February 19, 2021

Mumia Abu-Jamal FAQ: The Voice of the Voiceless (written by the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home)

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction

(PHOTO: Mumia with his wife Wadiya, shortly after being removed from death row in 2012.)

Who is Mumia?

Mumia is a revolutionary journalist. He has been writing since age 15, first as Minister of Information for the Philadelphia chapter of the Black Panther Party (1969-1971), then for numerous Philadelphia radio and print venues, including National Public Radio. 

His journalism was featured in mainstream venues, but he refused to forget those whom corporate media routinely neglect. He was especially noted for covering police harassment of the MOVE organization, while other journalists ignored it. 

His writings, today, after 39 years in prison, now fill twelve books and thousands of radio and print columns in publications ranging from homeless “street news” papers to Forbes magazine and the Yale Law Review.

Mumia Served Nearly 30 Yrs. on Death Row

Even Before Linn Washington Jr. and Dave Lindorff's 2010 Ballistics Test, There Were Already Serious Problems With the Ballistics Evidence Used to Convict Mumia Abu-Jamal

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction

The 2010 ballistics test performed by investigative journalists Linn Washington Jr. and Dave Lindorff physically proved that the trial testimony of prosecution eyewitnesses Robert Chobert and Cynthia White was a lie. Lindorff and Washington concluded that “the whole prosecution story of an execution-style slaying of the officer by Abu-Jamal would appear to be a prosecution fabrication, complete with coached, perjured witnesses, undermining the integrity and fairness of the entire trial.”

Even before this 2010 test, there were other well-documented problems with the ballistics evidence.  

What We Know

The facts of the Mumia Abu-Jamal/Daniel Faulkner case are highly contested, but all sides agree on certain key points: Abu-Jamal was moonlighting as a taxi-driver on Dec. 9, 1981, when, shortly before 4 a.m., he saw his brother, William “Billy” Cook, in an altercation with Officer Faulkner after Faulkner had pulled over Cook’s car at the corner of 13th and Locust streets, downtown Philadelphia. Billy Cook was bleeding from a large gash on his head after having been struck by Officer Faulkner's police flashlight.

Mumia approached the scene. Minutes later when police arrived, Faulkner had been shot dead, and Mumia had been shot in the chest.

The arresting officers claimed that when they arrived at the scene, Mumia’s legally registered .38 caliber, Charter Arms revolver (which Mumia says he carried while driving his taxi, after he was robbed several times on the job) was laying at his side with five spent cartridges.

Amnesty International Says Missing “Wipe” and “Sniff”  Tests Are  Deeply Troubling   

Police never officially performed the standard “wipe test” for gunshot residue on Mumia’s hands and clothing, or the “smell test” on his gun, which Amnesty International has criticized as “deeply troubling.”  J. Patrick O’Connor, author of The Framing of Mumia Abu-Jamal, writes that these tests “are so routine at murder scenes that it is almost inconceivable the police did not run them. It is more likely that they did not like the results.”

From The Archives: "A Christmas Cage," Mumia Abu-Jamal's February 1982 article describes his arrest, hospitalization, and imprisonment

 

(PHOTO: Mumia in the hospital)

A Christmas Cage

by Mumia Abu-Jamal

(February, 1982)

Shortly before 6 A.M., the speaker in this tiny, barren cell blares a message, said to be from prison superintendent David Owens: "A Merry Christmas to all inmates of the Philadelphia prison system. It is our hope that this will be the last holiday season you spend with us."

A guard reads Owen's name and the speaker falls silent for a half-hour. I wonder at the words, and ponder my first Christmas in the Hospital wing of the Detention Center. Christmas in a cage.

I have finally been able to read press accounts of the incident that left me near death, a policeman dead, and me charged with his murder. It is nightmarish that my brother and I should be in this foul predicament, particularly since my main accusers, the police, were my attackers as well. My true crime seems to have been my survival of their assaults, for we were the victims that night.

To add insult to injury, I have learned that the forces of "law & order" have threatened my mother and burned, or permitted the burning, of my brother's street business. Talk about curbside justice! According to some press accounts, cops stood around the fire joking, and then celebrated at the stationhouse.

From The Archives: Under Pressure, Yale RebLaw Conference Rescinds Keynote Offer to Philly DA; Instead Invites Political Prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal

--Please sign our Color of Change petition to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner: Stop Defending Mumia Abu-Jamal's Unjust Conviction

Featuring photos by Jamal Journal staff photographer Linda Ragin, taken at the Yale RebLaw Conference at Yale University, Feb. 15-16, 2019.


(This press statement was released by Workers World on February 1, 2019.)

Organizers of the Rebellious Lawyering (RebLaw) conference at Yale Law School rescinded a speaking invitation to Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner. The celebrated “progressive” DA was scheduled to be one of the keynote speakers at the 25-year-old conference on the weekend of Feb. 15-16. But earlier this week a coalition of Harvard law students and lawyers wrote to conference organizers, saying that Philadelphia prosecutors could not be counted in the tradition of rebellious lawyers. Their impassioned letter condemned DA Krasner’s decision to appeal a recent court order that granted Mumia Abu-Jamal the right to re-appeal his conviction. The letter also challenged the notion that a prosecutor could hold that title.