Monday, September 26, 2016

Pro bono assistance needed from an attorney

Rev. Pinkney is doing well and happy to be able to see his wife and other friends more often now that he is in Muskegon. He can visit the law library more often and he is keeping as busy as possible.  

Rev. Pinkney is glad to hear about the recent protests at sporting events against racism and the system. He said, "We've got to continue to keep that pressure on them. Our history is we run fast, but we don't run long. The race is a mile long, but we're like quarter horses that run a quarter mile and stop."

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Marcina Cole's new article on the national website Real Progressives.   Congrats, M!!

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Do You Hear Us? We Want Justice and Freedom, Now!

New article by Marcina Cole on the news site Real Progressives!

The days have been long and agonizing since Reverend Edward Pinkney, a sixty-eight-year old Black man and political prisoner, was incarcerated in December 2014. Rev. Pinkney, a civil rights activist and organizer from Benton Harbor, was charged and convicted of election fraud. On October 27, 2014, he was found guilty by an all-white jury of five felony counts of voter fraud. Rev. Pinkney was accused of allegedly altering dates on a recall petition against the former mayor James Hightower of Benton Harbor, Michigan. This politician looks out for the best interests of the Whirlpool Corporation who swamp over the small town, suffocating opportunities for the over 90% Black residents who are poor and disenfranchised. Hightower supported Whirlpool not having to pay any city income tax, and the burden shifted to the poor residents in Benton Harbor when Hightower took out an over two million dollar loan.

Read more at Real Progressives.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Rev. Pinkney Appeals to State Supreme Court, Speaks on Prison Radio

On September 3, 2016, Rev. Pinkney's defense team filed a 50-page "Application for Leave to Appeal" to the Michigan Supreme Court. Rev. Pinkney seeks to overturn the Court of Appeals disappointing opinion in July. The new appeal continues to raise the same questions that are critical not only to Rev. Pinkney, but to all of our constitutional, due process, and civil rights. Very briefly, these are questions of:
  • insufficient evidence
  • violations of Michigan Rules of Evidence and of the constitutional rights to free speech and due process
  • prosecuting under a statute that only sets out penalties, not crimes
Meanwhile, the Michigan Supreme Court declined to consider Rev. Pinkney's request for bond pending appeal, and he remains in prison in Muskegon. It may take a year before the Michigan Supreme Court hears his appeal, by which time Rev. Pinkney will have served the minimum sentence (30 months). As Rev. Pinkney has said, this essentially means that any of us can be kept in prison without any direct or sufficient evidence and with rampant violation of our rights.

LISTEN to Rev. Pinkney's response in his own words, recorded yesterday on Prison Radio.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

New book on Rev. Pinkney! Great little book which I couldn't put down

Soldier of Truth: The Trials of Rev. Edward Pinkney 
Paperback – September 11, 2016

Much of the news these days makes it obvious that our justice system doesn’t serve everyone—the richest players always seem to win. In Benton Harbor, MI, corporate giant Whirlpool pushes its weight around like a schoolyard bully, taking whatever it wants. This has never sat well with resident Edward Pinkney, and he has chosen the hard road of standing up to these abuses. His efforts, and the resulting government backlash, are part of the amazing story that unfolds in this book. In Soldier of Truth, Philip A. Bassett combines court reporting with personal stories to create a powerful portrait of Rev. Edward Pinkney and his quest to bring justice into America’s courtrooms. Join the author on his own journey, as his life is forever changed when he meets and befriends this remarkable man.

Purchase here:

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Prisoners at Kinross C.F. Riot Against MDOC

Over 400 prisoners protested at Kinross Correctional Facility near Kincheloe, Michigan, on Saturday, following a prison workers strike there on Friday, the 45th anniversary of the Attica Prison rebellion in New York. The nationwide prisoners general strike was called to protest prison slavery and low wages, as well as the inhumanity of U.S. prisons.

The Detroit Free Press reported that 150 of the protesters were transferred to other facilities, where they will no doubt spread the word. The union representing prison guards said that the incident was more serious than MDOC claimed, with multiple fires set and two housing units left unlivable. The Free Press reported, "No prison staff or inmates were injured, Gautz said, but non-custodial staff was evacuated Saturday afternoon and emergency response teams and other extra officers from nearby prisons were on the scene helping to restore order."

MDOC spokesman Chris Gautz told the Free Press it was "Not a riot at all."

However, a commenter wrote online:
Mr. and Ms. Media, the M.D.O.C. is lying to you as usual. At least two units were set on fire and two barricaded. The officers were pulled out for a while and the institution is a total loss. The reason the prisoners are giving for the RIOT is the garbage that Trinity, the new privatized food service company is feeding them. This is a full blown riot, not a protest.
Read more at the Detroit Free Press and ABC 10.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Update from Rev. Pinkney

Supporter Marcina Cole spoke with Rev. Pinkney about his transfer this week from Marquette Branch Prison to the West Shoreline Correctional Facility (MTF) in Muskegon. Again, please take a minute to write Rev. Pinkney a letter, card, or postcard, or send him an article at his new address. This will help the new facility understand how much support he has. The new address is:
Rev. Edward Pinkney #294671
West Shoreline Correctional Facility
2500 S. Sheridan Drive
Muskegon Heights, MI 49444
Marcina wrote:

Rev. Pinkney and 30 to 40 prisoners spent two agonizing days on the road to reach their destination, first stopping at Kinross prison facility. His wife and his supporters want him to be released from prison soon. 

Visitation hours as follow: 
Monday, Thursday, and Friday, 2:30 pm to 8:30 pm. 
Saturday, and Sunday, odd-numbered days only, 8:30 am to 8:30 pm. 

This facility is much closer to Rev. Pinkney's wife and family, and anything is better than Marquette Branch Prison. We want to thank the people who live in Marquette, Michigan, and nearby who supported and visited Rev. Pinkney during his time at Marquette Branch Prison. Many of us couldn’t make the tough drive of over 500 miles from his hometown, Benton Harbor, and other supporters in Michigan could not frequently drive to Marquette.

Thanks to everyone for your continued support of activist, organizer, and fearless leader Reverend Edward Pinkney.

Marcina Cole

Friday, September 09, 2016

Breaking News: Rev. Pinkney Transferred to Muskegon!

Two days ago, Rev. Pinkney was transferred out of Marquette Branch Prison, which he often described as Michigan's "concentration camp." He is now at West Shoreline Correctional Facility (MTF) in Muskegon Heights. We look forward to hearing more from him about the transfer and the conditions at his new facility.

It is critical that we send Rev. Pinkney letters, cards, and postcards to let the administration at this new facility know how much we support Rev. Pinkney. Please write to:
Rev. Edward Pinkney #294671, West Shoreline Correctional Facility, 2500 S. Sheridan Drive, Muskegon Heights, MI 49444

Also, Nationwide Prison Worker Strike on the 45th Anniversary of the Attica Uprising

Today, September 9th, also marks 45 years since the Attica Uprising in New York. The Marshall Project writes: "On September 9, 1971, prisoners seized control of the upstate New York facility and took 42 staff hostage. The ensuing stand-off lasted two days, leaving 43 men dead and 89 more wounded. At that time, the Attica riot marked the deadliest single encounter between Americans – Indian massacres aside – since the civil war....Follow @AtticasGhosts to see how Attica all went down."

On this anniversary, prisoners across the United States are starting a prisoner work stoppage to protest prison slavery! See the call and a list of nationwide solidarity events. In Michigan, there will be a protest starting at 4:30 in East Lansing and another starting at 7:30 in Detroit.

We Must Stop Supporting Lebron James, Michael Jordan, Oprah Winfrey, and All Others Who Do Not Support Our Black Community!

The history of our nation is the history of a long, hard, and tireless effort to broaden the franchise of American citizens, which includes Black Americans. At the very birth of our nation, a great struggle had to be made to secure the ballot for all people, who did not own property. Even among the founding fathers, there were men who felt that only those who owned property should have the right to vote. Over this issue a mighty struggle took place. When after many long years this fight was successfully won, a great effort was made by blacks and women seeking to obtain voting rights. After many, many years of agitation we won the right to vote. Many people died for the right to vote, fair housing, jobs, to be educated; but now come blacks who refuse to give back to the community.

Lebron James, Michael Jordan, Oprah Winfrey, and many others really believe they are part of this system, the establishment. They are only puppets to this corrupt, rigged system.
The best example I can give you is the NBA Basketball Finals which was rigged for Lebron James and the billionaire Dan Gilbert, owner of the Cleveland Cavs, to win the NBA Basketball Championship.

The referees were cheating for Cleveland Cavs to win along with the commissioner of the NBA. I will never ever watch another game on television or attend. It is a perfect example of our system and the establishment. They pick and choose who will win the championship and the people who pay the price for the entertainment are being cheated by the corrupt, rigged system and the establishment.

Lebron James, Michael Jordan, and Oprah Winfrey and others all refuse to give back to the community. It is so simple to just help the needy and write it off. Put the people to work and write it off. Lebron James, Michael Jordan, Oprah Winfrey all feel that if the blacks are to rise out of poverty, if the blacks are to rise out of the slum conditions, if the blacks are to rise out of discrimination and racism, they must do it all by themselves like they did. They say blacks must lift themselves by their own boot straps. They don't understand people have died, so they could live! Lebron James, Michael Jordan, and Oprah Winfrey never stopped to realize that no other ethnic group has been a slave on American soil. They never stopped to realize that the nation made the black man's color a stigma: they never stopped to realize the debt that they owe, so many people who fought and died for them to be in the position, and they refuse to give back to the community and black people still support them.

In 1863, the black people were told that they were free as a result of the Emancipation Proclamation signed by Abraham Lincoln, but the black man was not given any land to make that freedom meaningful. It was something akin to keeping a person in prison for a number of years and suddenly discovering that person is not guilty of the crime for which they were convicted, and you say now you are free: but you do not give him any money. We must learn to stand together and fight together for all. Lebron James, Michael Jordan, and Oprah Winfrey are all puppets for the system and the establishment and refuse to give back to the people who support them. The system normally finds a black person who fits into their system, but are not part of the establishment. The puppets cannot and will not help other blacks in any community. The system will not allow them to open their mouths about an issue in the community. We must confront Lebron James, Michael Jordan, and Oprah Winfrey at all costs!