Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Jalil A. Muntaqim

For more information about Jalil Muntaqim, please review these sites & blogs:

>A Political Prisoner’s Journey in the U.S. Prison System by A. Jalil Bottom
>Exiting the Prism….Fade to Black- A book of poems by Jalil Muntaqim
>We Are Our Own Liberator’s- by Jalil Muntaqim

Free All Political Prisoners!
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Bay Area CA Solidarity for Jalil Muntaqim (A.K.A. Anthony Bottom)
August 8th, 2013, Thursday, 7:00pm until 9:00pm
NIEBYL-PROCTOR LIBRARY 6501 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609-1113
MISSION: An ongoing solidarity event to establish a group of friends and supporters for Jalil. We will review and discuss Jalil's historic case as well as engage in reading, films, discussing his books, writings and Poetry. We will meet bimonthly, Thursday evenings at 7:00 pm at the Niebyl-Proctor Library.
SPONSORED BY: Aisha and Friends

As supporters of justice, end of oppression and advocates for freedom for political prisoners such as Jalil, we hope you will join us in solidarity at our meetings. Every voice makes a difference, as the unification of a committed community helps contribute to the cause for his ultimate release.
Yours in Solidarity, Aisha & Friends

*** A Special Thank you to The National Jericho Movement, The Freedom Archives & The Commemoration Committee for the Black Panther Party, for Endorsing and Supporting this Ongoing Event ***

ABOUT: "Jalil Abdul Muntaqim (Anthony Bottom) and Albert Nub Washington were arrested in San Francisco during an armed confrontation with police. Their arrests came only one week after the assassination of ....."
Over forty years later and more than seven denials at the parole board, Jalil remains strong in hope and missive.

“In 1986, Mr. Bottom drafted a legislative bill for New York State prisoners to obtain good time off their sentence. The bill was submitted and introduced into the New York State Assembly – Committee on Corrections by former Assemblyman Arthur O. Eve.
In 1994, while incarcerated at Shawangunk Correctional Facility, Mr. Bottom established the first Men's Council in the United States prison. His efforts were featured on television in Japan and written about in the NY Times. During this period, he also graduated from SUNY New Paltz with a B.S. in Psychology and a B.A. in Sociology.
Instead of resting on his success, he taught African Studies to a group of prisoners. On two occasions, he received commendations from prison officials for quelling potential prison riots, one in the mess hall at Great Meadow Correctional Facility and another time in the auditorium at Greenhaven, Correctional Facility.

From 1996 to 1999, Mr. Bottom was the office manager of the prison computer lab at Eastern Correctional Facility. His duties consisted of teaching prisoners keyboarding skills and how to use computer software programs. Despite his busy schedule, he found the time to raise money from inmate accounts to support the charitable Children's Funds.
In 1999, in Auburn Correctional Facility, Mr. Bottom established sociology, poetry, and legal research and discussion classes under the auspices of the Lifer's Committee that he chaired.
Mr. Bottom co-sponsored the Victory Gardens Project, a program in which farmers in Maine grew tons of fresh produce for distribution to poor urban communities in New York, New Jersey and Boston, Massachusetts. In the four years of its existence, the Project distributed nearly 10,000 pounds of fresh produce in urban centers.
In response to the tragedy of September 11, 2001, while in Auburn Correctional Facility, Mr. Bottom proposed raising funds from inmates to donate to the American Red Cross. Former Deputy Superintendent of Programs R. Nelson acknowledged Anthony's efforts in a memorandum.
While in Auburn Correctional Facility he worked as a Pre-GED Teacher's Assistant and earned a vocational certificate for Architectural Drafting. Mr. Bottom has proposed and gained the approval for a Life Skills Program for inmates.
Mr. Bottom is a published poet and essayist; his writings are found in several University sponsored books of compilations of prison writers. He has also written an unpublished novel and teleplay." (from: )

2012-09-20 message from Jalil A. Muntaqim
"Denial of Parole"
As many of you know, I sat before the parole board on August 21, 2012 for a de novo (re-do) hearing of the 2010 denial that was appealed and reversed. The reversal was based on not having on the record any statements from the defense attorney from trial and no trial record. Upon obtaining these records, a new hearing was conducted resulting, again, in a denial with the boilerplate language that, due to the nature of the crime and criminal history, I am not worthy to be released on parole.
On September 18, 2012, I again went before the parole board for the original scheduled parole hearing. Once again, I was denied release by two parole commissioners, Mr. Walter Smith, a former Senior Investigator for the State’s Crime Victims Board, and Ms. Sally A. Thompson, a 20-year NYPD veteran, a cop and detective, and presently a member of the Fraternal Order of Police and the Detective’s Endowment Association.
Naturally, on the record, I raised my concerns regarding the conflict of interest. Yet, Commissioner Thompson proclaimed that she could be fair and impartial. Commissioner Smith, as the primary interrogator conducting the hearing, offered in defense of Commissioner Thompson that the majority of parole commissioners have a background in law enforcement, and all are expected to do their jobs with fairness and impartiality.
Nonetheless, despite a thorough examination of the record finding absolutely nothing objectionable to denying my release on parole, release was again denied because of the nature of the crime. In essence, nothing I could present would persuade them to grant parole. In fact, during the hearing, I explained that at my previous parole hearing I was denied for the nature of the crime. I read from the August 21, 2012 denial that it was stated my “release is incompatible with the public safety and welfare of the community.” I then asked Commissioner Smith exactly what in my record indicates this conclusion.
Commissioner Smith said, “that’s a good question,” but was then unable to provide a single specific issue or thing in the record that supported that conclusory statement.
However, in Commissioners Smith and Thompson’s denial, they concluded: “The panel has concluded that your release to supervision is not compatible with the welfare of society and therefore parole is denied.” ... “To grant your release at this time would so deprecate the seriousness of your offense as to undermine respect for the law.”
What must be noted as part of the record are two independent psychological reports that state emphatically I am not a threat to society or at risk to become a recidivist. Furthermore, their own COMPAS risk assessment evaluation conducted by DOCCS analysis concludes I am “low risk” to be a recidivist or to engage in future acts of violence.
Obviously, the parole denial is a subjective political decision by law enforcement-influenced parole commissioners, void of objective reality or material facts to support their conclusory statement for denial.
This denial will be appealed. The process will probably take at least one year. In either case, I am scheduled to go before the parole board in June 2014. It is my sincere hope that by that time we can collectively create a new political environment substantial enough to challenge and change the composition of the NYS Division of Parole and to ensure that the voice of the community is respected.
In Struggle, Jalil A. Muntaqim

“First, I want to thank all of you who wrote letters and signed the petition in support of my release on parole. We did everything right!
However, the problem is that the New York State parole system is overwhelmingly comprised of law enforcement advocates and sympathizers prejudicial to community growth and development. Obviously, if the community needs were supported by policy makers, crime would decrease, job security in the overall Prison Industrial Complex (PIC) would be threatened, and the profit-based prison system would be less profitable. Therefore any prisoner, who advocates, as I do, community control of the institutions, is deemed a threat to the PIC’s; future, and we are continuously denied release on parole.
We presented an excellent parole plan, with over fifty support letters, 750 names on a signature petition, two independent psychological risk assessment reports favoring release on parole, the DOCCS own computer Risk Assessment analysis and report that indicated low risk to be a recidivist, two housing and work assurance letters, no prison disciplinary reports, every recognized certificate for rehabilitation programs, copies of High School diploma and two college degrees (BA in Sociology and BS in Psychology) and, just as importantly, two letters from the victim’s & family expressing forgiveness and urging my release on parole.
Nonetheless, as you can see, the parole board issued a boilerplate denial in abject disregard of the factual record of community support for my release and return to the community, disrespecting the victim & family and their own risk assessment analysis and report.
It has become ever more apparent that the New York State Division of Parole is a political institution with a right-wing agenda, which Governor Andrew Cuomo supports. He recently failed to appoint a single Black person as a commissioner to the parole board, despite the fact that 48% of all New York State prisoners are Black.
The parole denial will be appealed, so the fight for freedom continues. We need a community review board of the parole system, community direct involvement in the decision-making process on who will be returned to the community. Again, thank you for your support.
Jalil Muntaqim,
August 27, 2012

L.I.F.E. by Jalil Muntaqim
I am not a dream killer
I am a people healer —
some say I am a heart stealer
but like a peeler my spirit
is a revealer, shedding layers
leaving bare for you to stare
at that which cannot be compared,
can not be shared, no despair, just
declare that I truly care.
My live has evolved into a chemistry

of tears and fears, life experience borne
of jeers, absent cheers — the haters, betrayers,
the spirit emasculators have sought to break
me down, have me running around as would
a honey bee from flower to flower — searching …
searching … as the nectar of life eludes me
like an escaped convict daring to be recaptured
as freedom is found hostile to a life of
regimen, procedures and unwarranted discipline —
are you listening?
True love is lost as prison bars like
scarred tattoos X across the heart — tic-tac-toe,
only the pain knows the sorrow etched across my
chest like cardiac arrest, hiding under cloth green,
and numbered with no expiration date, only
labeled — L.I.F.E.!
September 8, 2012, Jalil Muntaqim, Attica, NY State:

Let The Force Be With You
June 2011, Jalil Muntaqim
 Look into the my third eye
 see the Black Knight whose
 words are like white light
 illuminating the might to
 be right on the left
 cutting all derision with
 precision as my vision
 and decisions compensate for
 the collision with my
 enemies making them give
 birth to maggots.

 Like drug addicts you'd be
 high trying to stay alive,
 obeying your thirst for lessons
 to learn only concern is
 testing the limits of
 my wisdom about days gone
 by racist oppression to no one's
 elation continues without
 abating no escaping chains
 needing breaking.

 I accept no alibis, no living
 lies, while Arab youth face
 multiple perils in unparalleled
 world in history and time,
 I'm inclined to remind the
 remiss that in the U.S.,
 the youth need to test their
 political strength in solidarity.

 For clarity, U.S. youth must
 take a stand for education,
 to end the war, demand jobs, and
 the liberation of Palestine.
 This combined with freedom
 and amnesty of U.S. political
 prisoners, with no derision
 their decisions will be
 a political collision with
 plutocrats and government

 I know they can do it,
 as it has been done before,
 class war no one adores, but
 it is necessary to restore
 our humanity beyond corporate
 horrors of profits over people,
 demanding Earth First ultimately
 our happiness will burst
 in knowing our youth
 has joined the world's
 revolutionary force.

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