The 'Friends of Marcia Powell' are autonomous groups and individuals engaging in prisoner outreach, informal advocacy, and organized protest and direct actions in a sustained campaign to: promote prisoner rights and welfare in America; engage the Arizona public in a creative and thoughtful critique of our system of "justice;” deconstruct the prison industrial complex; and dismantle this racist, classist patriarchy...

Retiring "Free Marcia Powell"

As of December 2, 2010 (with occasional exceptions) I'm retiring this blog to direct more of my time and energy into prisoner rights and my other blogs; I just can't do anyone justice when spread so thin. I'll keep the site open so folks can search the archives and use the links, but won't be updating it with new posts. If you're looking for the latest, try Arizona Prison Watch. Most of the pieces posted here were cross-posted to one or both of those sites already.

Thanks for visiting. Peace out - Peg.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Solidarity with the Gray-Haired Witnesses: June 21 Fast.


We need EVERYONE to join us in bringing national attention to the case of the Scott Sisters and all those who have been incarcerated wrongly and egregiously over-sentenced!

This is a day-long fast to be the voice of those who cannot speak for themselves, while standing on the shoulders of our righteous ancestors who taught us that we dare not become complacent and accepting of oppression but to struggle against injustice and to bring together the people who will loudly declare that enough is enough!

We stand on this history today. We stand before you as Gray-Haired Witnesses asking freedom-loving people of all colors who believe in the dream of Ida B. Wells, of a just, safe and open America for all peoples regardless of our different social locations to break the veil of silence and stand strong in a renewed spirit of moral consciousness for this country. The greatest asset we have is our body, mind and spirit and our willingness to step out of the daily flow of life and stand tall for what is right and just. The jagged tears in the social and cultural infrastructure of Black and poor communities and families are unconscionable and unacceptable to us. We come ready to repair them. In the tradition of race women throughout history, we declare our presence and we will not be silent and we are not afraid.


MEET US AT NEW YORK AVENUE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, RADCLIFFE ROOM, 1313 NEW YORK AVENUE, NW BETWEEN 8:30 AND 9:45 AM (2 blocks from the White House and Lafayette Square Park). The church is also available to us from 11:45a until 1:00.

Directions to Dept. of Justice from the New York Ave. Presbyterian Church: Come out of the building at 1313 New York Avenue, NW and turn left, cross the street at corner of the church,---you will be in front of the Inter American Bank—which is now H St, NW. Stay on H, cross at 13th, and count the numbers down to 9th—turn right on 9th, now count down the letters until you reach Pennsylvania Ave., NW –the address is 950 Pennsylvania. It’s about 10 city blocks.

There is a public parking lot located 4 blocks from the church and 4 blocks from the Department of Justice. It’s the best deal in town—most other parking is in garages that will not fit a bus. This is the contact information: City Center Parking operated by U Street Parking - 900 9th St., NW—the entrance is on 9th St, which is one way. Cars can park all day for $20 and buses can park all day for $35. Come down H St, NW to 10th, turn right on 10th go up 1 block, turn right, and then right again on 9th—the entrance is mid block on the right. Buses park to the far right of the lot. The telephone number is 202 265-0010.

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE - 10 AM - WE WILL BEGIN OUR FAST, PICKET, SPEAK OUT AND PRESENT PETITIONS AND DEMANDS FOR ERIC HOLDER. Gray-Haired Witnesses are calling for white clothing in solidarity, but participants need not join in the fast or wear all-white to support!

12 NOON - WHITE HOUSE PRESS CONFERENCE -- The Shocking Case of the Mississippi Scott Sisters Must Become a National News Story.

1PM-9PM - LAFAYETTE SQUARE PARK - Continuation of Fast with Speakers, Performers, Activists, Music -- Come thru and lend your support as we raise awareness of the shocking case of the Mississippi Scott Sisters and uplift and educate attendees around issues of serious concern to our Sistas and our community at large. We need your voice to be a part of this program! Bring non-perishable food donations that will be distributed to the needy of the DC community at the conclusion of the fast.

Participants include:

Khadijah "Moon" Ali-Coleman
Kermit Eady - Former Head, Black United Fund of NY, Eady Associates
Michael Johnson -Black Unity Movement, Black Student Union
Nkechi Taifa, Esq. - President, Legacy Justice Institute
Sam Jordan - Advocate for Justice and Prison Abolition
Senghor Jawara Baye - Pres. Gen., UNIA-ACL
Slangston Hughes
"Spoken Word" - Spoken Word Artist
Strong Love Band
Bro. Yango!
+ More, More, More!




On behalf of President-General Senghor Jawara Baye and the Government of the UNIA-ACL worldwide, we are here-in providing our full and unconditional support against the wrongful imprisonment of the Scott Sisters under the rampant racism exhibited by the state of Mississippi. Too long have we stood by and allowed our people to lanquish in the prisons of amerikkka. These two strong Black women have been held hostage on trumped-up charges of an $11.00 robbery since 1993...almost 17 years! This is what has transpired with them and many others since our sojourn in this wicked land. How long my people? How long will we continue to stand by while our Bothers and Sisters rot and die in the bowels of amerikkka’s dungeons?

Jamie is dying for lack of inept and inadequate medical care. This blatant racism that exists in amerikkka has not met its death as some would have you believe. Rise up now and show that you will no longer tolerate such. Let the powers that be know that it is way pass time for justice to step forward... instead of it always being just-us. We want Jamie and Gladys Scott released immediately. We want full and complete medical care issued and restitution for all these years of false imprisonment. We also call for a swift hand in all these cases where we have had so many of our people so blatantly and wrongfully imprisoned.

Zama Cook
Minister of Information
Government of the UNIA-ACL


We need you to support by doing some or all of the following--


2. Call, fax and e-mail Eric Holder and let him know that you are in Solidarity with the Gray-Haired Witnesses and demand an investigation into the case of the Scott Sisters and Jamie Scott's medical treatment. HOTLINE: 202-353-1555, PHONE: 202-514-2000, 202-307-6777 fax,

-- Call the Commissioner's office and demand that Jamie Scott be moved to the Medical Bldg. and leave the hot, moldy and infection-inducing Quick Bed unit, that she be given the nutrition that the doctor has told her she needs to survive, and that he advocate for the pardon of both of the Scott Sisters with the Governor's office. 601-359-5600,

-- Call/fax Gov. Haley Barbour and demand that he release Jamie and Gladys Scott from prison! 1-877-405-0733 or 601-359-3150, Fax: 601-359-3741

3. Send our press release to your local and national press and tell them that you are fasting in solidarity with the Gray-Haired Witnesses fast for justice and that you want them to write a story about the case of the Scott Sisters (press release is at

4. Repost our information to your Facebook and other social netwoking sites. Help us get the word out.

5. Forward the press release to national and local press outlets! We need your help! (Press release is at:

6. Issue a statement of support on an individual or organizational level on this endeavor and get it to us before June 20 and it will be read at the event. Write a blog, article or commentary, post it and pass it on for posting on our website.

7. Volunteer to help us on that day, we need you!

8. Change your Facebook or other networking site profile pic in solidarity for the day and represent one of the Scott Sisters or their mother! i don't want to include attachments on this e-mail in case everyone can't receive them, so please just e-mail me back for them or go to the Facebook group GRAY-HAIRED WITNESSES FOR JUSTICE and both of the photos will be there for you to use. Thank you so much!!


Action Committee for Women in Prison
Agnes Johnson, The 1212 Community in the Bronx
Ahmad Abdulibad, Minister~General, Sons Of Afrika
Bonnie Kerness, AFSC*
Brenda Scott Lowery
Bro. Moorbey, Chairman, Black Unity Movement
Bro. Sauti & Sis. Shiriki, KCBLR.ORG Radio
California Coalition for Women Prisoners
Charles E. Campbell, Allen Hydro Energy Corporation (AHEC)
Christian Guerrier, Founder, Millennials Project
Cleo Silvers
David Blanchard
Dick Gregory - Human Rights Activist
Dominique Reed, HRC-Fed Up!
Donna Wallach, Justice for Palestinians
Dr. Judson L. Jeffries, Professor & Director, The Ohio State University
Earl Smith, Executive Director, Order of Kush International
Eddie Griffin (BASG)
Fayemi Shakur, Sundiata Acoli Freedom Campaign
Florence L. Tate
Free Mumia NYC
Harambee Radio and Television Network
Helen Raines Staley, Albany NY
Int'l Concerned Family/Friends of Mumia Abu-Jamal
Jacqui C. Williams
Julie Ann Turner
Kenneth King
Kermit Eady, Eady Associates
Leonna A. Brandao, S.W.III, New Vision Org., Inc.
Malaika H. Kambon, People's Eye Photography
Marilyn McMahon, California Prison Focus
Marritte Funches, founder of the August Initiative
Mary Ratcliff, Editor, San Francisco Bay View Newspaper
mesha Monge-Irizarry, Director, Education Not Incarceration, SF Chapter,
Idriss Stelley Foundation, + SF MOOC City Commissioner*
Michael Johnson/Black Student Union (Comm. College of Balt. County/Essex)
Michelle Alexander, Author, "The New Jim Crow - Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness"
Mississippi Prison Watch
Monica Moorehead, Women's Fightback Network, NYC
Mumia Abu-Jamal, Political Prisoner
Nancy Lockhart, M.J., Legal Analyst
Nathan Hare, Black Think Tank
Nkechi Taifa, Esq. - President, Legacy Justice Institute
Pastors Against Injustice, Wayne Jones
Paul Lefrak.
People's Organization for Progress
Rev. Kenneth Glasgow, T.O.P.S.
Rev. Majadi Baruti, Udja Temple Ministries
Ron Scott, Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality
Sam Jordan - Advocate for Justice and Prison Abolition
Senghor Jawara Baye, President General UNIA-ACL
Sistah Q, Author of Maintaining Our Temples
Sundiata Acoli, Political Prisoner
Tara Graham
Terry Howcott
The African American Freedom & Reconstruction League
The MOVE Organization
Trinita Simpson
(* For ID purposes only)

Blessed are those who struggle
Oppression is worse than the grave
Better to die for a noble cause
than to live and die a slave

Up through the years we've continued this fight
our liberty to attain
And though we have faced insurmountable odds
yet the will to resist remains

(From: Blessed are Those Who Struggle - The Last Poets)

The Scott Sister's shocking double-life sentence must not become death sentences on our watch!

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