Thousands say: "Shut down the Death Debate'"
The target was the presidential candidates' debate on Oct. 3, 2000, in Boston. For a week before the event, Boston police, state troopers, and secret service agents put out the word in the corporate media that no marches would be legally permitted.
The cops complained in the Oct. 3 morning press that death penalty protest organizers were refusing to return their agents' calls. They threatened that "illegal attempts to march will not stop the flow of traffic." They spoke of herding people into "protest pens."
But Kazi Toure, a former political prisoner and leader of the Boston Coalition for Mumia Abu-Jamal, told Workers World, "The people don't need any permit, and we never asked for one." As he spoke, activists pushed aside cop barricades in front of the Dudley Square police/court complex to make way for a sound stage to address the thousands of protesters pouring into the square.
Attieno Davis, representing Boston City Councilor Chuck Turner's 7th District Roundtable, blasted Democratic and Republican politicians for promoting HMOs and other for-profit health-care schemes that have left poor communities, especially people of color in cities and rural areas, with plummeting coverage
Cops scrambled to move their vehicles as Imani Henry of Rainbow Flags for Mumia fired up the multinational crowd with chants of "Money for health care and housing, not for prisons." Henry drew cheers and raised fists from the rush-hour crowd of workers in this hub of Boston's Black community.
"Victory to Palestine!" waved a green, black, white and red Workers World Party banner. A two-story-tall puppet of Native political prisoner Leonard Peltier, carried by members of his local defense committee, filled the sky.
When chant leaders Justice Williams, Shirlynn Jones, Eve Williams and Imani Henry called out "Death Debates," "the Pentagon," "the death penalty," "the IMF" and "capitalism," the marchers roared in response, "Shut it down!"
Free Mumia Abu-Jamal
Tragic Times, Five Times Two
Matt Meyer July 21, 2016: Tragic Times, Five Times Two;
Some thoughts on Policing, Black Lives Matter, and July 21st — with Claude Marks, Lumumba Bandele, Kazi Toure, Basir Mchawi, Judith Mirkinson, Amilcar Shabazz, Spiritchild XspiritMental, Jay-Marie Hill, Kali Akuno, Herman Bell, Monifa Bandele, Signe Harriday, Nate John Buckley, Osagyefo Sekou, Melina Abdullah, Asha Bandele, Jalil Muntaqim, Bob Lederer, Rosa Clemente, Anne Lamb, Paulette D'auteuil, David Ragland, [Leslie Mac], Jared Ball, Rosa Bettina, Susan Rosenberg, Dequi Kioni-sadiki, Sundiata Acoli, Meg Starr, Brittany L. Williams, Robert Seth Hayes and Mutulu Shakur.