May 2015 — Maroon’s Newsletter

Greetings Maroon supporters worldwide,

Welcome to our monthly e-mail blast on the status of U.S.-held political prisoner Russell Maroon Shoatz.

We’re building on the momentum of some recent victories—most notably Maroon’s release into the general prison population at SCI-Graterford after over 20 years in solitary confinement—and are truly grateful for YOUR support and efforts in helping to expand our network, with the ultimate goal of bringing Maroon home.

Please consider contributing to our ongoing fundraising for Maroon.

In this month’s update, find out about Maroon’s current cancer treatments, hear from Maroon supporters at a 61st birthday event for fellow political prisoner Mumia Abu-Jamal in Pittsburgh, and read one of Maroon most recent essays, an assessment of the renewed movement against unchecked police power, entitled “After Ferguson: Looking Forward and Looking Back.”

Maroon’s Health Update

Maroon continues to journal about the treatment he is receiving through SCI-Graterford. He currently has about 10 treatments left of the 44 he is prescribed. Other than extreme fatigue and a strict diet, Maroon seems to be doing well. He has found some support within the walls, meeting other men who have completed the same treatment for the same cancer, finding camaraderie in sharing information and experiences.

Maroon writes: “My relatives, friends, and supporters are relieved that the treatments that could rid my body of this cancer have finally begun, and I more than anyone (smile). Thanks for all the support, and you can depend on me to follow the instructions given to me by my radiation therapy team in our struggle to rid my body of this cancer.”

Please follow this link to read Maroon’s latest health report.

Spring Maroon Tour group photo, Wilmington
Spring Maroon Tour group photo, Wilmington, Delaware

Spring Maroon Tour Update

On March 28th, we launched the Spring Maroon 2015 Book and Culinary Tour. Throughout the country, Maroon’s son, Russell the III, hosted community discussions based on writings in Maroon The Implacable, breaking bread with healthy food, and strategizing around Maroon’s recovery from prostate cancer and freedom from prison. From Philly to Denver, Brooklyn to Baltimore, we’ve had the opportunity to meet and build with some extraordinary activists, discuss the important organizing models and historical lessons Maroon’s offered in his book, and recharge our efforts to bring Maroon home. Many thanks and much respect to everyone who came out, and stay tuned for the final few events on the tour, coming up next month in the Bay Area and D.C

The Spring Maroon Tour stopped by Pittsburgh on April 24th to participate in a panel discussion, music and educational sharing on the issues surrounding Mumia’s Health, Political Prisoners, Women, and Youth.

What do Gentrification and Political Prisoners have in common? Click HERE to listen to Russell the 3rd respond during the panel discussion at the 61st Birthday Celebration for Mumia in Pittsburgh on April 24, 2015

Pam Africa was the keynote speaker. Click HERE to listen to her 35 minute speech. Tension was high as we were alerted that evening that Mumia was very ill and not receiving treatment. Please keep in touch with the Campaign to Bring Mumia Home

“There is no such thing as a dying from natural causes in prison.” -Bret Grote of the Abolitionist Law Center. Follow this link to hear him speak on Maroon’s Case.

After Ferguson: Looking Forward and Looking Back

by Russell Maroon Shoatz

Ever since the police killed Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri – closely followed by the killing of Eric Garner in New York, as well as the killing of lesser-known individuals elsewhere – the world has witnessed a new Movement emerging against unchecked police power. We can have no doubt this is an emerging Movement, one that has the potential to qualitatively change our struggles for Human Rights.

Why do I say that? Since the historic Anti-Globalization upheaval that occurred in Seattle, Washington in the late 1990s, followed by the global fight–back against the World Trade Organization and its deadly consolidation of corporate power, the youth of the North have joined hands with the ongoing revolutionary upsurge in county after country in South America. Each in their own way, they have demanded that people and the environment take center stage over corporate profits.

Read More..

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