Speaking Out for Mumia

Revolutionary Worker #1003, April 25, 1999

"If you look today at the movement to save Mumia Abu-Jamal's life, what do you find? You find there are many people who believe that he is totally and completely innocent, that he is in prison because he is an ex-Black Panther, because he is a MOVE supporter, because of the racism of this country. There are plenty of people who believe just that. But there are others who know about what went on in Judge Sabo's courtroom. And they look at how unfair that trial was, and they know about how the police pressured the witnesses against Mumia and they know as time has gone on how almost all of those witnesses have recanted. And they look at a trial like that and they say, we don't know whether he is guilty or innocent but we know that was an unfair trial and a trial that is so unfair can't prove anything. You shouldn't even take someone's driver's license away in a trial like that, let alone put him on death row. And then there are those who simply say the death penalty is wrong and that this killing has got to stop."
Robert Meeropol, son of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg

"I just know that the trial stank."

Ed Asner, actor, speaking about Mumia's original trial

"Amnesty's position is that the emergency now is to keep Mumia alive, to prevent an execution that can happen. Many people are under the impression that Mumia will never be executed because he is so famous and because he has a very strong network of supporters. I wouldn't be that confident after having been confronted with the callousness of the criminal justice system in this country... We have to make sure that he's not executed."

Pierre Sané, Secretary General of Amnesty International

"John Africa, MOVE's founder, had taught us that our enemy has plenty of differences among themselves but they never, ever let that interfere with them coming together to oppress us. Therefore, we can't allow them to build any dividers amongst us that would keep us from coming together to fight them. We got one mission, one fight. I don't care if you are Latino, black, Asian or whatever, we got one fight. We got one enemy. Mumia's case is in the spearhead of that fight because his case represents everything that is wrong with this system. And we understand that when we bring Mumia home, when we back this system off of Mumia, we have backed this system off of all us and taken a giant step forward to knocking this system down, getting it off of all of us."
Ramona Africa, MOVE

"Mumia's trial was a gross miscarriage of justice. Just unbelievable. `Highlights' included prosecutorial misconduct, intimidation of witnesses by the police, suppression of evidence of Mumia's innocence, a jury illegally purged of African-Americans, a hostile racist judge and a prosecution who argued for the death penalty based on Abu-Jamal's political beliefs! Mumia is an outspoken revolutionary, a hero to millions around the world and we will not allow his voice to be silenced."

Tom Morello from the band
Rage Against the Machine

"I want to encourage supporters to intensify the struggle for Mumia's life. ...If we are able in unity to stop the execution of Mumia Abu-Jamal, we are not only saving the life of a man who speaks for those who are not often heard and whose stories are rarely told, but you are saving all of us who remain unjustly behind bars from the depths of hopelessness."

Leonard Peltier

"The power of his voice is rooted in his defiance of those determined to silence him. Magically, Mumia's words are clarified and purified by the toxic strata of resistance through which they must penetrate to reach us. Like the blues. Like jazz."

John Edgar Wideman, author

"I am the father of the 13-year-old boy who was shot and killed by a housing police officer. He was playing with a toy gun. I am here today to support free Mumia. It's important that we organize and get ourselves together. I have been fighting and struggling for my son for the last four years. There is no justice in this system.... The justice that is in this system is between us ourselves. We have to fight ourselves for justice for our children and for our families."
Nicholas Heyward, Parents Against Police Brutality
and October 22nd Coalition to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and Criminalization of a Generation

"For me, the Mumia Abu-Jamal case is about the person who is able to articulate the interests of minority people not only in terms of color, but in terms of ideology. Because we know what the real deal is also about. It is about the repression of left-wing, progressive, insightful cultural criticism and political and moral critique aimed at the dominant hegemonic processes of American capitalism and the American state as evidenced in its racist, imperialist and now we might add homophobic and certainly its patriarchal practices."

Michael Eric Dyson, author and professor of African-American Studies at Columbia University

"The jail cells in America have been a one-sided crime all the way back to slavery. Until everyone is truly represented in this land as one people, there's going to be a lot of fucking poison going on. Free Mumia Abu-Jamal. Free the mind. Use your independent thought and don't be a robot going into the 21st century!"
Chuck D. from Public Enemy

"In my long history as a Black man in this country, I've seen many instances where the people, and the pressure of the people, provided the last resource for defendants. And sometimes when the people are themselves sufficiently concerned and aroused, they have had the deciding impact on what finally happened to the defendants... Mumia's case is attracting the attention of the American people. Our hope is to facilitate this, to make this a matter of concern at every breakfast table in the country so that the people will finally speak."
Ossie Davis, actor

"We are aware that the legal proceedings against Mr. Abu-Jamal have been wrought with injustices and serious irregularities since his arrest for supposed involvement in the death of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner on Dec. 9, 1981. ... Thus, as members of an organization dedicated to social justice, and motivated by our consciences and our commitment to international solidarity--with the knowledge that an injustice to one is an injustice to all--we add our voices to those demanding a new and fair trial for Mumia Abu-Jamal."
From a June 1997 declaration by the Zapatista Front for National Liberation

"On the basis of racial profiling Amadou Diallo was seen as someone who was suspicious and dangerous, a threat to the system. Mumia Abu-Jamal was a victim of political profiling. He was seen as a threat because of his political beliefs, his political ideas and his staunch advocacy on the part of civil rights and human rights and on behalf of Black and poor people, oppressed people in this country and around the world. Mumia Abu-Jamal will be a victim of government sanctioned murder, unless we the people stop the execution."
Ron Daniels, Executive Director, Center for Constitutional Rights

"A rare and courageous voice speaking from a place we fear to know: Mumia Abu-Jamal must be heard."

Alice Walker, author

"I think we've got to think of new methods and broader coalitions and being a little more gutsy with regard to our tactics. I think we can't be business as usual because I think if it's business as usual, the man's gonna die, and it would be such an enormous tragedy that more of us have to put ourselves on the line to keep that from happening."
Frances Goldin, Mumia's literary agent

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