Raphael Cohen here (Free Maroon Bay Area). I hope this message find each of you well, despite a month of immense loss we’re coming out of, with the news of
passing, right on the heels of Maya Angelou’s passing a few days before.
As we both mourn their departures and celebrate the totality of their tremendous lives–in particular their longstanding contributions to social justice struggles–I’m writing to thank you for your participation in our evening of support for Russell Maroon Shoatz, hosted by Freedom Archives at 518 Valencia in San Francisco, two weeks ago. I’m also writing to let you know that an audio recording of the event is now available on Soundcloud, in the event that you missed some portion of our gathering or would like to share the link with friends and colleagues.
This event of course took place on Yuri Kochiyama’s final birthday, May 19, 2014. Claude Marks, Freedom Archives director, opened the event with some remarks about the date’s significance, conjuring Yuri’s Kochiyama’s life and legacy to set the evening’s tone. Kamau Walton, of Critical Resistance, followed, offering an update on California’s prison struggles. We then heard from Russell Shoatz III, Maroon’s son, for an update on his father’s case and some discussion about next steps and strategies in the struggle to free U.S.-held political prisoners. The event concluded with a roughly half-hour Q & A period.
Thanks again to everyone who came out and spread the word. If you’re on Facebook, please “like”/”join” our page, Free Maroon Bay Area, for frequent postings/updates on Maroon’s case and info on forthcoming Bay Area support events (https://www.facebook.com/freemaroonbayarea). If you’re not on Facebook, this mailing list will continue to be used for updates, if a bit less frequently. Please respond directly if you’d like to have a different e-mail address used or be removed from the list.
Finally, here’s the link to the event’s audio recording (and probably best to listen in headphones, as volume may be a bit low otherwise):