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, December 20, 2009

Sex Workers' Resistance in Phoenix

Sorry to leave folks hanging all weekend – can’t believe it’s Sunday already. I was sick as a dog yesterday, but I'll have a report on the demonstration Friday sometime tonight (or in the wee morning hours – I really need to stop and crash awhile). It's more observation and analysis than a report, really, which is why it’s taking so long. This stuff is pretty loaded, and I don't want to be too reckless with it. Sometimes I need to stop and take a breath (or a nap) before speaking, or it gets me into trouble.

In the meantime, check out Vikki Law's site on women's resistance in prison:  Resistance Behind Bars. There's a lot there that explains why Marcia Powell was put in a cage in the first place, why she was ignored as she lay dying, why no coverage was given the three women who protested afterwards by setting their mattresses on fire, and why most of my attempts to communicate with Director Ryan and his staff these past few months have gone unanswered. It also accounts for why so little recognition has been given by the Left in Phoenix (which is anywhere this side of the far right, in this state) to the complex dynamics that perpetuate domestic, occupational, and state violence against sex workers, the SWOP members’ courageous acts of defiance, the artistic expressions of grief and rage and hope that have emerged from this on-going tragedy, and the insistence on honoring all human rights that the Sex Workers' Outreach Project brought to this discussion.

Back again later – if you’re on the East Coast, don’t wait up. I should be done by morning.  

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