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New Political Prisoner/POW Support Organization Formed in Vermont

November 10, 2009

BY JACOB LEACH

In the spring of this year, myself and six other comrades formed a political prisoner and POW support organization, Vermont Action for Political Prisoners (VAPP).

The opportunity to bring Robert King of the Angola 3 to Brattleboro came up just before VAPP folks started meeting, so we decided to organize an event for the following month. It was a great success, with around sixty people attending and a high level of engagement from the audience.

VAPP completed a document expressing our mission, goals and principles, which we posted to our blog (vermontactionforpoliticalprisoners.blogspot.com). We have also listed upcoming and past VAPP events, as well as links to other PP/POW organizations and resources. Over the winter months, we hope to develop the blog further to discuss specific PP/POW cases and highlight particular PPs/POWs that are in need of immediate support. We aim to work in alliance with other PP/POW support organizations (i.e. Jericho, ABCF) toward the larger goal of creating a strong and unified amnesty movement for PP/POWs in the united states.

In the upcoming months, we will be focusing on developing effective strategies for providing various forms of support to our comrades in captivity. In addition to this goal, we will also be planning more fundraising events to make this work possible. Please email us at vermontaction@gmail.com to give any suggestions or constructive criticism that you’d like to offer. Venceremos!

Mission

Vermont Action for Political Prisoners (VAPP) works for the freedom and amnesty of all U.S. held political prisoners (PP) and prisoners of war (POW)

Principles

We are committed to being anti-racist and fighting racism.

We are anti-capitalist, anti-imperialist, anti-sexist, class-conscious, LGBTQ-allies.

We work in solidarity with all liberation movements in the U.S.

We are a non-hierarchical organization.

We are a part of a larger movement to free all PPs/POWs.

Goals

To be in continuous correspondence with PPs/POWs to make certain that their ideas and wishes for this movement are what provide direction for this work. We want to communicate with, connect with, and take direction from PPs/POWs.

To raise public awareness of existence of PPs/POWs, including education about the resistance movements they are a part of.

To raise public awareness of the systemic injustices of U.S. prisons.

To provide material, emotional, and legal support to PPs/POWs.

To work in alliance with Jericho Movement, ABCF and other PP/POW support groups.

To make this work relevant locally by exposing issues with VT prisons and working with VT prisoners.

To work in solidarity with political prisoners. We want to help meet the immediate needs and desires of PPs/POWs, while maintaining the ultimate goals of getting them free and eventually abolishing prisons. We are not interested in prison reform. We want our people out of captivity.

Analysis

We believe in the struggles, fights and freedom movements that the political prisoners we support are part of and work with them in solidarity. We fight for their freedom and amnesty not only because we believe they don’t deserve the charges brought against them, but because our values are rooted in their work. We work in honor of U.S. political prisoners who have passed on and strive to continue their struggles.

We are prison abolitionists.

Prisons need to be abolished. Imprisonment is a form of slavery and perpetuates a racist, classist, and sexist society. Prisons in any form will never work to solve social problems and will always serve as a tool for the rich and powerful to maintain control. Abolition of prisons is essential to moving toward a free and just society.

We also strive to dismantle the Prison Industrial Complex, the warehousing of people as a system of social control needed to perpetuate capitalism. Angela Davis gives us more definition to this concept. “The prison industrial complex is much more than the sum of all the jails and prisons in this country. It is a set of symbiotic relationships among correctional communities, transnational corporations, media conglomerates, guards’ unions, and legislative and court agendas… Prison construction and the attendant drive to fill these new structures with human bodies have been driven by ideologies of racism and the pursuit of profit.”

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One Comment leave one →
  1. AttekNetbah permalink
    April 2, 2011 1:44 am

    Cheer usurp me to beget kitty

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