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Help Free Chip Fitzgerald--Longest Held Black Panther Politi

 
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Mark
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Joined: 13 Nov 2007
Posts: 1052



PostPosted: Wed Jun 04, 2008 1:09 pm    Post subject: Help Free Chip Fitzgerald--Longest Held Black Panther Politi  Reply with quote

The link to the petition is here:

http://www.petitiononline.com/chip4ree/petition-sign.html

Help Free Chip Fitzgerald--Longest Held Black Panther Political Prisoner

Email from Elaine Brown, former head of Black Panther Party:

My dear Sisters and Brothers,

           Help us FREE CHIP FITZGERALD!  Chip has been in prison for over 38 years now! He will go before the California Board of Parole Hearings on July 2, 2008.

           Chip was a member of the Southern California Chapter of the Black Panther Party in 1969 when he was shot and wounded by police.—This was the year the FBI pledged to wipe out the Party, the year the Party's L.A. office was assaulted for over five hours by several hundred members of the LAPD's new SWAT Team, the year so many Party members were killed by police, including Walter Touré Pope and Fred Hampton.—Over a week later, Chip was arrested and charged with assault on police and the murder of a security guard.  He was sentenced to death.  When the death penalty was outlawed in California, his sentence was commuted to life with the possibility of parole.  

           Chip continues to believe in the struggle for the liberation of all oppressed people, and, despite the hardship of all these years of incarceration, heroically recognizes that his captivity is the result of his dedication and commitment to that struggle, a result we welcomed when we dedicated our lives to the Party and the Struggle.

           On behalf of the Committee to Free Chip Fitzgerald, I'm asking you to sign our online Petition to the California Board of Parole Hearings advocating for Chip's parole.  The Petition can be easily accessed on our website: www.freechip.org.  And, I'm asking you to pass it on, send out this email to every single person and organization you know, to all your email lists, urging everyone to sign the Petition and pass it on to their contacts!  We want 100,000 signatures by June 30, 2008!

           With love for the People,

           Elaine Brown
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2008 8:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark, you're down that way. How do his chances look? Will he draw a decent judge?
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Mark
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Joined: 13 Nov 2007
Posts: 1052



PostPosted: Thu Jun 05, 2008 1:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This will be a parole board hearing. The parole board doesn't have much of a humane record.

The U.S. has more prisoners than any other country in the world. Most are in prison for nonviolent crimes and many of them have mandatory minimum sentences that cannot be reduced. Our state and federal prisons are known for rape, torture, and the spread of drug-resistant communicable diseases like AIDS and tuberculosis. The privatized prisons are worse.

Judges and parole board officials who were "soft on crime" have been purged a long time ago.

I urge everyone to take action. I did. But I wouldn't give a plugged nickel for his chances. Or Mumia's. Or the MOVE nine. The US gulag isn't run for political, social, or any other possibly legitimate reasons. We call it the prison-industrial complex because it is an industry. A growth industry and a profitable one. It is run for profit alone and other considerations don't enter into it. Yes, people are more apt to be imprisoned if they have dark skin and/or are poor, so many see it as part of class warfare, the rich suppressing and oppressing the poor. But really it is just another way to make money. Taxpayer money pays for the prisons and for the parole boards' salaries. They aren't going to vote to cut their own budgets, not even by a single prisoner. They have a fiduciary duty to maximize profits and it isn't anything personal. Just pure capitalism, although it may be difficult to distinguish it from totalitarian Communism or any other rule by force of violence.

Just business as usual.

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