Free Mumia

It seems like there has been an inordinate amount of good news in the paper today. Driving is down 6 months in a row, as Baby Boomers stopped driving their kids around is the biggest factor. Desegregation is rolling along as more black folks move to the suburbs. Asians and Latinos open the door moving in creating space for black folks in white neighborhoods. (Whites don’t move into black neighborhoods except in isolated cases of gentrification. Boo whites.)

The biggest piece of good news was that Mumia Abu Jamal was taken off of death row. I knew it yesterday, because even though I’m pretty attached to paper newspapers (anything worth doing is worth doing like in the 19th century) I appreciate what my brother said when his buddy asked “what’s that?” when he tossed me the paper in its tight plastic sack. “That’s a newspaper. Its what people read before there was an internet. It tells  you what happened yesterday.”

So yesterday Mumia Abu Jamal was taken off death row. I have heard some of his stuff and read one of his books. I worked a short quotation of his into a wedding I did in Canada on “the primordial forest”. I went to Philadelphia and protested many years ago. This has been going on so long. There is good evidence his trial was fraudulent and the circumstances are murky. Even if he shot the cop he’s been in the joint a long time and has done much good. It was a racially charged time and there was a lot of weirdness around the whole thing. I was moved largely by my gut which has always told me he’s a good man.

I also wrote  poem about his situation. Its pretty dated but I am putting everything up and archiving it and its probably worth sharing. I take a light, almost tongue in cheek approach as I was poking fun at my strident to the point of humorless activist friends who have as little room for dissenting thought as the mainstream they rail against. I love them nonetheless and largely root ’em on. The biggest thing about the piece is its dated. This might be my last chance to share it with any kind of relevance. I always thought it was a tight little piece and I like the ending a lot. Almost feel like I squandered it on a piece so set in a particular time.

He’s as innocent as OJ

And Clinton, well of course

So why’s he on death row

And not on the golf course,

Looking for the real killers

And the guys who killed Vince Foster?

Why aren’t there black tie dinners

With key note speaker Kevin Costner?

He’s as cool as the dolphins

As exotic as Tibet,

And they say there might be riots

But they haven’t started yet,

And so they will try to kill him

In the name of God

Because if you spare the child

Then you spoil the rod.

  1. December 18, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    nice…

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