While it comes as no surprise, the fact is that in modern times Black people are not only regularly gunned down by the State, but also kidnapped and caged for standing up for and defending their communities. 23 year old Joshua Williams is a victim of the latter and will be the focus of NYC ABC‘s every-other-week political prisoner letter-writing dinner.
Josh became a vocal regular participant in the anti-police demonstrations following the murder of 18 year old Mike Brown in 2014. Later that year, Joshua was arrested for the arson of a convenience store that was located across the street from the fatal police shooting of Antonio Martin just days prior. In December 2015 Joshua pleaded guilty to arson and burglary and has been sentenced to 8 years in state prison.
Josh’s age and high profile status as a Ferguson protester have made him a consistent target for right wing media and blogging blowhards. They have been giggling to their empty selves at the idea of a young man who has been outspoken for peace being locked up for arson. They lack the understanding that peace sometimes comes at a cost. They lack the context of a world in which a young Black person enduring any violence by the State or other white supremacists will likely go unchecked and probably publicly applauded. The damage to an empty building is not equivalent.
We expect to see you on Tuesday. If you can’t make it, please take the time to write a letter to Josh:
Joshua Williams #1292002
Missouri Eastern Correctional Center
18701 Old Highway 66
Pacific, Missouri 63069
The deal, as always, is that you come bringing only yourself (and your friends and comrades), and we provide you with a delicious vegan meal, information about the prisoners as well as all of the letter-writing materials and prisoner-letter-writing info you could ever want to use in one evening. In return, you write a thoughtful letter to a political prisoner or prisoner of war of your choosing or, better yet, keep up a long-term correspondence. We’ll also provide some brief updates and pass around birthday cards for the PP/POWs whose birthdays fall in the next two weeks thanks to the PP/POW Birthday Calendar.
Tuesday, April 16