Letters to the Editors

Letters to the Editors

Dear Editors,

Revolutionary greetings!

I watch the news of the worldwide protests in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor with growing anticipation. The murder of innocent civilians, disproportionately people of color, by law enforcement has gone on unchecked for far too long and the people have had enough. While I support the protesters 100 percent, and cheer them, I can’t help but think of all the victims of social violence and social murder that are incarcerated across the nation. I don’t know about you, but I view the death penalty and Life Without Parole (LWOP) sentences as a form of violence, but yet hundreds-of-thousands in Amerika, if not millions, are victimized and have been victimized within the last fifty years alone in this way.

We live in the biggest prison-for-profit nation in the world. Often, these sentences are imposed as a result of one act of violence that is a direct result of social conditions such as poverty. One act of stupidity can result in imprisonment for a lifetime or even death, with no chance of redeeming or rehabilitating oneself. While other countries utilize alternatives to incarceration that are effective, Amerika locks away and murders one-sixth of theirs.

Restorative justice works and heals all the wounds inflicted by crime. The incarcerated and disenfranchised need their own revolution, it seems.

Kudos to those active in the revolution going on worldwide for the victims of police brutality. It’s about time! We incarcerated need a similar movement. I hope I’m fortunate enough to be alive when it happens.

I wish Sylvia Weinstein were alive to see her legacy brought to life. She would’ve been so proud.

In struggle,

Comrade Harlequin, AKA Tamara Angelique Allenbaugh

Write to Tamara Angelique Allenbaugh (Trans Prisoner):

Smart Communications/PADOC

Thomas Flick #LJ9467

SCI Phoenix

P.O. Box 33028

St. Petersburg, FL 33733

Dear Editors,

I’ve been out in the streets protesting police brutality and killings since the Rodney King “riots.” And been aware of police, specifically San Francisco Police Department, killing young Black men since Hunters Point native Kendrick “Street Frog” Gardeau was run off the road on his motorcycle by SFPD October 17, 1989.

I’m also a surviving veteran of the war on drugs, and countless experiences with police violence and brutality. Not racially motivated, but as someone who grew up on welfare and of the “working poor” class, and absolutely motivated by class oppression, it’s likely that the only reason I have survived this far, besides being a fighter, is because of the color of my skin. Not All Americans have that privilege, so all lives don’t matter in this society, under this system.

There are no good cops in a racist, exploitive, and oppressive system. There may be cops who believe they stand for justice and are well intentioned, but they chose that side as a way of life. There will always be jobs enforcing racist and capitalist oppression as long as society continues to produce for profit, because it’s a system designed to uphold white supremacy. It’s systemic. The capitalist profit motive holds the value of material wealth and property over the value of life. And since white and capitalist supremacy already owns the majority of the world’s wealth, they will always be willing to pay enforcers like the cops and military to protect their interests.

A perfect example of this is Sean “Tucan” Monterrosa, who was killed by Vallejo cops while on his knees with his hands up. The police claimed he had a gun, but all they found was a hammer. And anyway, who loots with a pistol?

And what conditions in society caused young Sean to risk his life for material gain? That’s where the movement should be focused, not just on the surface but at the root of the problem.

Another example of property held above the value of life—if you report a car stolen, the driver will be pulled over at gun point, whether the car was actually stolen or not.

As long as the profit motive remains there will be abundant room for exploitation, oppression and brutal enforcement of the laws that protect material wealth and property.

The only way to truly dissolve the police is a socialist revolution to dismantle the system in place that values human life less than property and material wealth.

End capitalism with a socialist revolution and you will see solutions collectively manifest with the interest of life and the future at the heart of society.

Rest in Power Kendrick “Street Frog” Gardeau.

Rest in Power Sean “Tucan” Monterrosa.

—Johnny Gould

(Follow @tandion415 on Instagram)