Tag Archives: prisoners

Banners Hung For June 11 and Marius Mason

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Reposted from It’s Going Down:

As a small, anonymous gesture of complicity, we hung two banners to honor June 11, day of solidarity with long-term anarchist prisoners. These banners are on the main north/south roads into and out of Bloomington. No matter how long he is held at FMC Carswell or in any other cage, we will make sure Marius isn’t forgotten here, especially given the vital role he played in defending the land and building a community of resistance in our region.

 

 

J20 Black Bloc Reportback

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Reposted from It’s Going Down:

People worked their way out of the shadows to meet at People’s Park. Participants were handed complimentary gift bags which included a handout on safety in the streets, face and hand coverings, noisemakers, and other fun items for a night out on the town. It feels like a sign of the times that all of these tools were enthusiastically accepted and used by most people who received them. It doesn’t seem hard for people to understand that in order to fight this regime and its “Alt Right” foot soldiers, we need to begin to protect ourselves and each other.

Stickers put over parking meters

While the small, but energetic, crowd of around 30 took the streets shouting “Fuck Donald Trump”, crews broke off in relative ease to relax by each of the city’s parking meters down Kirkwood, the main street in town. The meters were decorated with stickers drawing connections between the meters and the police (meter money helps fund the BPD). Stickers decorated with “Don’t Feed the Pigs,” solidarity slogans with refugees and prisoners, anti-police and Trump messages were placed strategically on the solar panels that power the meters in an attempt to sabotage their functioning. And let’s just say the pigs will go a little hungrier these days as the locks on over 35 meters were disabled with glue and/or had their card and coin slots blocked with expanding foam.

Dumpster rolled into street

Dumpster tipped over in the street

But our bellies were full of rage! As the march approached the building of Indiana University’s School of Informatics and Computing, balls full of paint were passed throughout the march. Individuals threw a dozen paint balls at the building as chants went up against Trump and the national security apparatus he now controls. The School of Informatics and Computing is directly tied to the ever-increasing web of control that Obama has perfected over the past 8 years, and which Trump will now inherit. The department’s Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research is funded by Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), the Office of Naval Research (ONR), and prison profiteers Eli Lilly and Company; it has ties to the National Security Agency (NSA) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security; and it has connections to JP Morgan Chase and AT&T, Microsoft and IBM Life Sciences, and other architects of the open air prison in which we live.

IU School of Informatics hit with paint

Onwards towards the Monroe County Jail! But first, it seemed like the right time to drag a bank’s rolling dumpster into the street, overturn it, and scatter its contents. With the dumpster blocking traffic, we came upon the jail, which received a beautiful new paint job as the crowd rained paint balls down on its pristine Indiana limestone. People are sick of suffering as their friends and family are locked up by the pigs with the guns and the pigs with the gavels, and are ready to fight back. Freedom to the prisoners!

County Jail hit with paint

Metal trash cans, news boxes, sandwich boards, flares, and flash fireworks were thrown and brought into the street as we proceeded back down Kirkwood keeping cars at a safe distance from the crowd. Why waste our time getting in petty back and forths with bystanders or people when there are more fun things to do?

Banner reading: "For FREEDOM FROM the American Dream"

With streets blocked and the spirit of the crowd strengthened by the progression of attacks up to this point, individuals began kicking things up a notch. Multiple ATMs were smashed, a bank entrance was repainted, and a bank window was smashed. We know that the coming years will require much of us. We have many skills to develop, projects to create, and social spaces to liberate. But without a capacity to fight – to attack those who want to murder, imprison, and deport us – our struggle will remain forever on the defensive. Last night showed that caring for each other, getting organized, being courageous, challenging our self-imposed boundaries, and attacking our oppressors is not only possible, but joyous, playful, transformative, and effective.

Banner: "All We Want Is Total Freedom"

As the march hit its end, we made our way to IU’s sample gates where a smoke bomb was let off and people dispersed into the night laughing and celebrating. Day one of the Trump administration, day one of a new terrain of revolt and social struggle. We have only begun to fight.

smoke cannister

New Year’s Eve Banner Drops

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Reposted from Plain Words:

Breaking away from the jail demo tradition, we kicked off the new year with something fresh and exciting. At the stroke of midnight we dropped four banners and let five thousand fliers rain down from two downtown parking garages. United with friends, we reveled in the togetherness we will carry with us into the new year. 2016 was shitty and we expect that 2017 will be as well; however, we recognize the need to continue fighting. With these modest acts, we sharpened coordination practices that we will need in the coming months and years. Each of the banners reflects an element of our revolt we intend to strengthen and spread over the next year – combative memory for our fallen fighters, solidarity with our imprisoned comrades, determination to continue fighting no matter what is thrown at us, and struggle against immediate manifestations of power.

As December ends, we also take time to remember the lives of our fallen warriors. William Avalon Rodgers was an Earth liberationist who took his own life on December 21, 2005 while in jail awaiting trial on arson charges. Kuwasi Balagoon was a former Black Panther, fighter in the Black Liberation Army, bisexual, and anarchist who died in prison from medical neglect due to AIDS-related illness on December 13, 1986.

December 2016 marks 11 years since Avalon’s death and 30 since Kuwasi’s. We will not allow those who sacrificed everything for freedom to be forgotten. As we continue our struggles against Power, we keep alive the memory of Kuwasi, Avalon, Alexandros Grigoropoulos, Sebastián Oversluij, Lambros Foundas, Mauricio Morales, Feral Pines, and all of our other comrades who have passed on. Memory, like fire, burns our enemies and keeps us warm.

We are consistently inspired by Marius Mason’s spirit and take strength from each of his paintings, poems, and letters. In an attempt to return the favor, we also chose to highlight his acts this New Year’s Eve. For many years, Marius lived and took action in Bloomington and we intend to maintain the passion and fighting spirit that he once embodied here.

As a quaint college town and liberal bastion in a red state, Bloomington’s iteration of state violence often takes the form of closing off public space to undesirable populations to maintain a sterile, commerce-friendly environment. One of the primary targets of this cleansing is the sizable homeless population. The city has deployed social worker cops, signs discouraging giving money to people on the street, and several new security cameras in popular hangouts like People’s Park. Despite their language of safety and compassion, we know that the city government has no interest in genuine solutions to the problems of poverty, unaffordable housing, and addiction; in reality, it exists to manage and police the conditions that create these problems. We have made a choice to not fall for the soft policing of the non-profits and charities that are in the pocket of the city.

Whatever 2017 brings, we plan to face it head on.

Call-In to Stop Torture at Wabash Valley Correctional Facility

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Received and transmitted:

*Please call Wabash Valley Correctional Facility Superintendent Richard Brown and Indiana Department of Corrections Commissioner Bruce Lemmon to protest the ongoing torture of inmates in disciplinary segregation at WVCF!
More information below.*

Richard Brown: (812) 398-5050
Bruce Lemmon: (317) 232-5711

Script:
“I am calling to protest the ongoing torture of prisoners in disciplinary segregation at Wabash Valley Correctional Facility. The prisoners are being tortured by slow starvation and exceedingly cold temperatures in the cells.  The food rations these prisoners are receiving are dangerously insufficient, and the staff keeps the AC on so high that prisoners are constantly cold. Please examine the practices of the staff at WVCF in regard to the provision of food to inmates in and their operation of the heating and cooling system in disciplinary segregation. Also, please repair the sink in the cell of James Phillips (DOC #106333), because it is currently broken to the point that he can’t get water to drink unless he puts his mouth on the faucet. Thank you.”

FB event here <https://www.facebook.com/events/937269289718747/>

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From James Phillips #106333, Wabash Valley Correctional Facility

To Whom it May Concern,

My name is James Phillips (DOC #106333) and I’m a mentally-ill offender at Wabash Valley Correctional Facility. Since I’ve been at this facility I’ve endured and been subjected to abuse and harsh conditions on all levels.

Last Fall and Winter I was housed in K-Housing Unit, which is the Special Needs Program for inmates with mental illness and after a month into attending the program my mental illness symptoms increased dramatically due to abuse, stress, and ineffective treatment. The cells have no heat in the wintertime, and we receive lukewarm air at best, and most of the time we have to sleep in all of our clothes (even our coats) just to stay warm. The areas where the officers are and patrol have fairly good heating and the temperature difference outside of the cell is considerably warmer than inside the cells. I’ve filed numerous complaints and nothing has been changed or done about this matter.

Also, while attending this program I’ve been racially targeted by officers and harassed daily, verbally and mentally, and received bogus conduct reports that are not true. I’ve also found that inmates in regular population have been subjected to the same abuse and conditions.

In February I was assaulted by two inmates and in return I defended myself and was discharged out of the Special Needs Program and sent to a lock-up unit, which violates my mental health code because it worsens my mental health condition. The two inmates who assaulted me were not sent to a lock-up unit and got to stay in the program, which is unfair and biased. I believe I was singled out because I’ve filed numerous complaints exposing
the wrong-doing of officers and staff involved in the program.

While in CCU lock-up unit my mental health symptoms have gotten worse. I started hallucinating and was seeing worms in my food so I quit eating and was brutally sprayed with Mace and OC Gas because I couldn’t get to my feet quick enough to be handcuffed. I didn’t eat for eleven days. I was then placed in a cell designed for holding inmates temporarily passing through which had no toilet, sink, or running water, for three days. I had to use
the restroom on the floor and had no water to drink, nor did I have proper bedding because the cell wasn’t designed for overnight stays so I slept on the floor. I was then removed from the that holding cell and placed back in the contaminated cell where I had been sprayed. They never cleaned the cell like they were supposed to.

I still struggle with paranoid thoughts of incidents I’ve been subjected to and that I’ve seen others be subjected to. Since I’ve been in the CCU lock-up unit I’ve lost thirty-five pounds due to lack of food being placed on trays, or small portions, which is done as a deterrent so offenders will not want to come back to a lock-up unit. I’ve filed complaints about this also and nothing has happened.

Also, officers are leaving us in the showers for over an hour after we’ve finished showering as a deterrent to prevent us from coming out of our cells to take showers, which makes their jobs easier. Every day it is a constant struggle and a different form of abuse. They are also tearing up our cells during shakedowns, when we come out to go to rec or shower to prevent us from coming out. It’s crazy here at this facility because staff rarely follow IDOC policy.

Strike Solidarity, Day 3: Noise Demonstration

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Reposted from It’s Going Down:

On the night of September 10th, 30 rebels took advantage of the first home-game of the season, when most law enforcement were kept busy elsewhere ushering crowds and responding to drunk bros (college towns take note!), and staged a simple yet raucous demonstration outside of the county jail in solidarity with our friends and family locked inside as well as the hundreds of prisoners across the country currently on strike.

Noise was made, smoke-flares set off, and fireworks lit, illuminating the air as chants echoed off the walls in tandem with the honking horns of the blocked traffic. 800 flyers advocating solidarity with striking prisoners and condemning prison slavery were both strewn about and passed to curious passersby/motorists.

When the state kidnaps people and throws them into these concrete tombs it is because they wish to isolate them from “the outside,” from their families, communities, and support networks – in other words, to bury them alive and erase them from our memory so that prison officials may do anything to their captives without fear of repercussions. But we will not and do not forget, and we do not forgive.

While we lament not taking full advantage of game-day policing strategies, small gestures against policing and the prison industrial complex such as these let those locked up know that they are NOT forgotten, that prison officials may NOT do what they please with impunity, that there are people out on the streets who understand that we are one small mistake from being locked away ourselves and thus choose to stand with those on the inside who have already fallen into the state’s clutches.

For a world without prisons and police!

For total liberation!

Forty-five years after Attica, the waves of change are returning to America’s prisons. This September we hope to coordinate and generalize these protests, to build them into a single tidal shift that the American prison system cannot ignore or withstand. — This Is a Call to End Slavery in America, 2016

Strike Solidarity, Day 2: Microphone Demonstration

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Reposted from It’s Going Down:

Acting in solidarity with prisoners going on strike throughout the country, we hosted a microphone demo at Indiana University’s Sample Gates in Bloomington.

A large banner that reads “PRISONERS ACROSS THE U.S. ARE ON STRIKE – Prisonstrike.com” was raised in the middle of the campus gateway. Using a speaker system, we read Chelsea Manning’s hunger strike statement and Free Alabama Movement’s “Let the Crops Rot in the Fields.” Sean Swain’s 9/9 statement from The Final Straw radio show and a segment from Crimethinc podcast about the history of prisoner resistance were also played.

People passed out handbills and had conversations with pedestrians and curious people who stopped to listen or ask what was going on. The demo lasted about an hour.

For Chelsea, fighting for her dignity against brutal transphobia and repressive confinement. For all striking and rebellious prisoners in revolt against their captors. And for all – behind bars or in the “free world” – who choose to act against this system of domination and control.