Text by Dawoud Kringle
On Tuesday, June 27th, 2017, pianist, composer, and music educator Geri Allen died. The cause of death was reported to be cancer. She was 60 years old.
Her work has earned her a reputation as one of the world’s finest jazz pianists.
Geri Antoinette Allen was born on June 12, 1957 in Pontiac, Michigan, and raised in Detroit. She began studying the piano at age seven and went on to graduate from Cass Technical High School, (the alma mater of Paul Chambers, Wardell Gray, Gerald Wilson and Donald Byrd).
Today is International Women’s Day!
Yes: equal pay for women!
Yes, protect a woman’s right to choose!
Yes, there are many women in this country suffering from injustices which still exist today!
The answer to stop discrimination: women organize!
The official title of this year’s global day of action is Be Bold For Action.
Supporters Celebrate, Demand Full Freedom
Text by the Free Marissa Now Mobilization Campaign
Supporters of Marissa Alexander in Jacksonville, across the US, and all around the world are overjoyed that Alexander has been released from jail after serving 3 years behind bars for defending her life. In 2010, Alexander, a black mother of three from Jacksonville, Florida, was forced to defend her life from a life-threatening attack by her estranged husband by firing a single warning shot that caused no injuries. State Prosecutor Angela Corey prosecuted Alexander, pursuing a 60 year mandatory minimum sentence. On November 24, 2014, Alexander accepted a plea deal that included time served of nearly 3 years in prison, 65 additional days in the Duval County jail, and 2 years of probation while under home detention. Today marks the end of her time behind bars.
Date: Friday, August 1, 2014
From: Aleta Alston-Toure’ (904-631-6019) and Alisa Bierria (650-799-7741)
Place: Duval County Courthouse Steps (501 W Adams St, Jacksonville, FL)
Marissa Alexander Supporters Close Successful Week of Action; Mark Four Year Anniversary of Alexander’s Self-Defense
On Friday, August 1st at 9 am, supporters of Marissa Alexander will meet on the Duval County Courthouse steps to mark the four year anniversary of Alexander’s action to defend her life from her estranged abusive husband. Supporters will also celebrate Alexander’s life and commit to press for her freedom in the coming months. This gathering wraps up the Standing Our Ground Week of Action, a successful convergence that drew hundreds of people from across the US from July 25 to August 1, 2014. Events included a march and rally in front of the Duval County Courthouse; community workshops on reproductive justice, domestic violence, mass incarceration, and legal rights; and a concert benefiting Alexander’s legal defense fund.
Date: July 23, 2014
From: Aleta Alston-Toure’ — 904-631-6019
Alisa Bierria — 650-799-7741
For Release: Immediately….Notice to the Media
Free Marissa Now and thousands of Marissa Alexander’s supporters around the world are strongly disappointed that the Florida courts on July 18 denied Marissa a fair hearing to support her right to self-defense under Florida’s Stand Your Ground laws. Yet again, Florida refuses to free this survivor of domestic violence and undermines women’s right to self defense, though it failed to convict two white men for the murder of two innocent black teen boys. It appears that Florida courts place less value on a young black mother’s fear in the midst of a life-threatening attack and more value on the anger and unsupported fear of two white men.
Nine days after a premature birth, Marissa Alexander harmed no one when she fired a warning shot to stop another life-threatening attack by her estranged husband. She faces possibly sixty years in prison as a result of prosecution by the state of Florida. Is Marissa being used as an example?
Incarceration happens more frequently when black people are convicted of crimes, but women of color who are victims of domestic violence serve more time for self-defense. Female incarceration rates show 78% of inmates are Black and Latina and most women in prison have been victims of abuse. This should not happen to anyone. Mass incarceration of women is a lucrative business at the stake of women’s lives and the well-being of families.