“To be clear, our Peaceful Protest of Resistance to our continuous subjection to decades of systemic state sanctioned torture via the system’s solitary confinement units is far from over. Our decision to suspend our third hunger strike in two years does not come lightly. This decision is especially difficult considering that most of our demands have not been met (despite nearly universal agreement that they are reasonable). The core group of prisoners has been, and remains 100% committed to seeing this protracted struggle for real reform through to a complete victory, even if it requires us to make the ultimate sacrifice. With that said, we clarify this point by stating prisoner deaths are not the objective, we recognize such sacrifice is at times the only means to an end of fascist oppression.”
The third and longest hunger strike was suspended yesterday. I hope this means that humanity can learn lessons before falling again to feed the demons of tragic indulgence. No sense in kicking dead horses at rock bottom. I want to hear these men tell their stories when we do smash the prison-industrial complex and they’re all out of this colonial hell. I do not want to be marching for years to come holding pictures of the dead. I want to hear their stories. And if there has to be a fourth hunger strike, no doubt we’ll all start losing them.
California politicians have promised reform. The families are glad it is over. So am I, but it’s not over. There has been impressive organization against the prison-industrial complex in the US, but it is clear that the past 60 are a prayer to kick things into high gear. I can’t say that I know what this means for me or others like me. But I will say that the Irish are world renowned for prison solidarity, and I know I have a responsibility to carry that ancestral energy to this west coast.
We need to be the winners who write our history, we who fight with our lives for decolonization. Ciallaíonn díchoilíniú díothú bpríosún!
“This hunger strike is historic on many levels: the number of prisoners who went without food; the international media attention; and the impressive mobilization of groups on the outside who published in-depth analyses, organized demonstrations, worked with the media, and promoted the prisoners’ demands and their Agreement to End Hostilities. Coupled with the lawsuit by the Center for Constitutional Rights and other attorneys, this peaceful protest was a tremendously courageous effort that has the potential of securing real change in California’s practices related to solitary confinement.”
We fierce dreamers who call ourselves Cascadians must see Pelican Bay as the festering wound that it is upon the beautiful bioregion whom we call home. And it is our responsibility to stop the hurting and heal the wound. And the interconnection and interdependence of the bioregional vision extends our solidarity all the way down to Imperial County, and beyond that colonial boarder to the south. Then on to Guantanamo. Palestine. I have no doubt that so many of us could be the ones on the inside if we don’t act with full force to live out the truths that this hunger strike has put into our hearts. Decolonization means prison abolition. And uncompromising solidarity until our day dawns.