End Prison Slavery, In solidarity

WE MUST COLLECTIVELY CHAMPION THE RESTORATIVE JUSTICE POLICIES OF CHESA BOUDIN!

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington  Assistant Editor of The San Francisco Bay View-National Black Newspaper

“Abolitionist politics is not about what is possible, but about making the impossible a reality.  Ending Slavery appeared to be an impossible challenge for Sojourner Truth, Denmark Vessey, Nat Turner, John Brown, Harriet Tubman, and others, and yet they struggled anyway.  Today we seek to abolish a number of seemingly immortal institutions, drawing inspiration from those who have sought the abolition of all systems of domination, exploitation, and oppression from Jim Crow laws and prisons to patriarchy and capitalism.”—Abolish Carceral Society  by Abolition Collective  (Dog Section Press 10/02/2019)

Valerie Block, wife of Chesa Boudin, his parents David Gilbert & Katherine Boudin in Wende CF, Alden NY

One of the most wonderful things that I love about the San Francisco Bay View National Black Newspaper is that no one attempts to control or stifle the exercise of my free speech. Some of my opinions may not be embraced wholeheartedly by all the people, but at the end of the day, my opinions and thoughts are respected. Mary Ratcliff and I regularly engage in intelligent and respectful dialogue when we can in order to come up with a consensus that works for us.

Most of you are well aware, especially those who live in San Francisco, that Chesa Boudin has been elected as San Francisco’s new district attorney. At first, I didn’t have a clue who Mr. Boudin was, but I did my research. For those who know me well, I am a cerebral individual and I adhere to the motto that “We must seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave.”

Sisters and brothers, I know exactly what punitive, retaliatory, malicious and vindictive “justice” looks like in Amerika. I live this reality every day that I wake up inside my cell in United States Penitentiary Pollock. U.S. District Judge Lynne Nettleton Hughes wanted me to do life in federal prison. 

However, with Chesa Boudin we have a human being who believes in restorative justice. Mr. Boudin’s background and his intellectual as well as his academic pedigree deviate dramatically from what we know to be the status quo and norm of the “run of the mill” career prosecutor or district attorney in the United States of Amerika.

Many of us within the Prison Abolition Movement have been looking for hope in order to change these systems of oppression. Well, hope has arrived! The question is whether or not we will keep hope alive and give Mr. Boudin the support he needs to implement his “radical” policies – or will we allow organizations and groups like the Police Officers Association and other naysayers to destroy the dream before it even materializes? I encourage all of you to support Chesa Boudin.

The San Francisco Bay View enthusiastically endorsed the election of District Attorney Chesa Boudin. We support Mr. Boudin as passionately and fervently as we support our Mayor London Breed! There are some big changes taking place in the Bay Area and the Bay View newspaper hopes to be a part of that change. We are struggling to preserve the voice and the legacy of Black and all oppressed people within the Bay Area!

Through mass incarceration, gentrification, environmental injustice and police terrorism, many of us have been squeezed out, ignored or exterminated by local and federal government employees and officials. Now we have someone who wants to change the status quo and at the very least give people of color and all disadvantaged people a realistic opportunity for a second chance. 

Chesa Boudin can pave the way and lay the foundations for new discussions about what justice in Amerika can actually look like when we promote restorative justice. Thus far, if this article has piqued your interest, perhaps the following thoughts will seal the deal and win you over to our line of thinking.

David Gilbert and Chesa Boudin as a child

The election of Chesa Boudin serves as a notice and a possible paradigm shift in what we have become accustomed to within the realm of the criminal justice system in Amerika.

Mr. Boudin is intimately familiar with the deleterious effect and collateral damage that lengthy prison sentences can have on the moral fabric of a family. In my work, I have always strived to humanize prisoners in the eyes of the public at large. 

I am challenged daily by the stereotypes and lies promulgated by the mainstream media as well as the silly rants of the bourgeois ruling class: “superpredators” and “animals.” This is how the oppressor class characterizes us, but this is not how Chesa Boudin views us.

David Gilbert, Mr. Boudin’s remarkable and intelligent father, has been a source of knowledge, education and inspiration for me. I shun the demonization of the white working class and I fight to save our planet. 

While many are pushing the narrative of racism, I clearly see that the capitalist imperialist system in Amerika as well as throughout the world is an enemy of the poor, irrespective of the race or even the gender of the individual(s) in question.

As we analyze the Prison Industrial Slave Complex, we see and witness the exploding numbers of women who are trapped inside these modern day slave kamps. The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. 

I learned much at the feet of my Mother. You don’t think that Chesa Boudin missed his mother during his childhood? Do you think that he forgot where she was or who was holding her captive for 22 years? 

Is there any compassion in Amerika for the incarcerated mothers of the poor? I promise you, sisters and brothers, Chesa Boudin knows exactly why the caged bird sings and perhaps he and I will harmonize together and sing a song that will liberate the caged voices throughout Amerika! But y’all don’t hear me! Or do you?

As a prisoner myself, when I analyze and look at what the future may bring, it comes down to responsibility. If I want to help lay the foundation for more people like Chesa Boudin, I must take ownership of my actions and behaviors! I have a duty – a duty to shun criminal behavior and a duty to give back to my community. I owe y’all that!

If Chesa Boudin is willing to change the “game” as we know it, then it is incumbent upon me and every prisoner reading this article to support him by changing our conduct. I am talking to all of y’all! I believe the OGs in this human rights movement will agree with me. 

I send a shout out to Dr. Mutulu Shakur at USP Victorville, Jalil Muntaqim in New York and Sundiata Acoli in Maryland and a clenched fist and Panther love to Kevin “Rashid” Johnson. I will continue to attempt to turn these razor wire plantations into schools of liberation! USP Pollock has some good men, and we shall overcome adversity and promote the peace.

I realize that this editorial may be provocative to many. If you have any thoughts, comments or questions on or about this brief piece, please do not hesitate to contact us. I firmly believe that we should collectively support Chesa Boudin and, furthermore, that we must create a strong freedom campaign for Chesa’s father, David Gilbert, a true servant of the people!

Dare to Struggle, Dare to Win, All Power to the People!

Keith “Malik” Washington is assistant editor of the Bay View, studying and preparing to serve as editor after his release in 2021. He is also co-founder and chief spokesperson for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement, a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee and an activist in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign. Visit his website at ComradeMalik.com. Send our brother some love and light: Keith “Malik” Washington, 34481-037, USP Pollock, P.O. Box 2099, Pollock LA 71467.

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End Prison Slavery, In solidarity, Prison conditions

Lost in time: Lift up our brother Sitawa and strike down indefinite incarceration

by Mutope Duguma Published earlier on the SF Bayview and on Sitawa.org.

It’s always hard to stomach news that is disheartening. To hear that a brother and comrade has suffered a stroke after spending countless years in solitary confinement, as well as being held on an indefinite sentence for an alleged crime he did not commit, is even more disheartening.

I need not stress the sorrow that is felt amongst the whole prison.

Sitawa Nantambu Jamaa with arms crossed, in 2017

Sitawa Nantambu Jamaa in July of 2018 population for our brother Sitawa Nantambu Jamaa, who, along with countless fearless prisoners, pioneered our Prison Human Rights Movement (PHRM) to the world’s stage. We continue to see men and women incarcerated far too long – beyond anyone’s imagination – and continue to be held indefinitely.

Our beloved brother Sitawa is amongst this class of men and women. The inhumane treatment of prisoners must end.

Our brother Sitawa and many others have suffered enough and should not continue to do so based on being given a life sentence that equals a civil death. Prior to 1968, under original Penal Code Section 2600, California prisoners suffered complete civil death, which means prisoners were stripped of all civil rights.

The prison system is actually covertly executing all of its lifers. The United States is the only country in the whole world that incarcerates people indefinitely – forcing them to spend the rest of their lives in prison. Men and women have been incarcerated for 35 years or more.

Many of these people are lost in time. They came to prison as youth in their teens and early 20s in the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s. Yes, many of them were immature, many had no real direction, but they all became adults in the Amerikan prison system.

At present these prisoners, Baby Boomers, most of whom have survived decades of incarceration, are now between the ages of 60 and 80. Many of these senior citizens are wheelchair-bound or use assistive devices such as walking canes.

Like most seniors, many are on special medications, require special medical therapy for seniors, and suffer from aging illnesses of various sorts. I hear some say that a few manage to get around good at 70 years young.

Many say, yes, they should be in prison, and that may be true in some cases. Given the things they did in society, the way they carried themselves in the youth of their lives was utterly wrong and disrespectful, but that was decades ago when they were young! Decades!

They are now older, mature, grown, senior adults, who have fulfilled all requirements from various parole boards around the U.S. Multiple prisoners have complied with all laws, rules and regulations of the prison and carried themselves as role model human beings and in many cases have done so for decades.

Still, many of them are forced to remain in prison when the maximum amount of time on their sentence has long since expired. This is terrible and extremely cruel to force rehabilitated human beings to remain in bondage and especially when statistics clearly show that 90 percent of them are not returning to prison once released.

Sadly, 89 percent of prisoners across the US are Black and Mexican. From 1619 through the 1800s, the chattel slavery plantation concept lurks in the shadows like the Wizard of Oz.

This “behind the scenes” type strategy involves money laundering exclusively into white rural areas under the Prison Industrial Slave Complex (PISC). (That’s where prisons were built during the height of mass incarceration, in small rural communities that had lost their economic base, where people were so desperate for jobs, they were willing to work in a prison. These were white communities with deep prejudice toward Blacks. – ed.)

Many of us may very well die in these man-made tombs. It should be stipulated that these deaths are in clear violation of the Eighth Amendment of the US Constitution, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment.

The suffering is indefinite where there exists no end to the punishment. Many have died, and many will continue to die where there is no remedy to resolve the cruel and unusual treatment of prisoners.

We must resist to end this cruel and unusual treatment of human beings and encourage our brother Sitawa, who is fighting for his life. We will fight for his freedom and the freedom of the thousands of men and women lost in time.

One Love, One Struggle,

Mutope Duguma

Sitawa is recovering from a major stroke. Send him some love and light (Sitawa is currently housed near San Diego, mail will be forwarded):

Freedom Outreach
Attn: Sitawa Nantambu Jamaa
Fruitvale Station
P.O. Box 7359
Oakland CA 94601

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End Prison Slavery, In solidarity, Prison conditions

I will not be silenced!

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

Originally posted in San Francisco Bay View

“Protect Our Leaders” – Art: Joseph Stewart, 0802041, 4285 Mail Service Center, Raleigh NC 27699

There is a problem in Amerika when a close confidant and advisor to the president embraces white supremacist and white nationalist ideologies. I’m speaking about Steven Miller. How is this possible?

More and more we have been observing the normalization of hate speech. At the highest levels in the United States government and some state governments, bigotry and hate are becoming the status quo and are being reflected in newly accepted policy and practice.

There are no laws on the books in the state of Texas which protect LGBTQ people from discrimination in the workplace! I find this unacceptable. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott have embraced a hostile position against Texans who identify as LGBTQ. How can we convince Paxton and Abbott to acknowledge the humanity of LGBTQ people?

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has recently sent word to Iranian citizens requesting that they provide officials in the United States with video evidence of violent acts of suppression aimed at protesters who strongly disagreed with the recent 50 percent increase in the price of gas.

Since when has Mike Pompeo been interested in the safety or welfare of any Muslims in any country? Could it be that Pompeo is more interested in destabilizing the Iranian government in order to foment regime change?

Has Mike Pompeo been vocal about our Muslim sisters and brothers in Yemen who have been victims of an ongoing genocidal campaign by Saudi Arabia? No! Mike Pompeo doesn’t give a damn about the Muslims in Yemen. What about the 1 million Uighur Muslims who languish in Chinese re-education concentration camps! Is Mike Pompeo willing to advocate for their immediate release? I think not!

There are human rights violations which are taking place right now in prisons here in the United States. Violations, abuses and injustices which are routinely ignored. Every day employees with the Federal Bureau of Prisons orchestrate the murder, abuse and outright execution of numerous targeted prisoners.

The Department of Justice sees the patterns and trends yet will not launch a broad fact-finding investigation because at the end of the day, prisoners’ lives don’t matter and the BOP considers federal prisoners to be sub-humans not deserving of respect or dignity.

Jeffrey Epstein’s death was not a suicide nor was it an accident! What happened to Epstein was pre-meditated and planned, carried out by the BOP. However, the only reason that Epstein’s case has garnered so much scrutiny and public attention is that Jeffrey Epstein was a billionaire who had evidence which implicated the likes of Bill Clinton and Prince Andrew in acts of sexual abuse as well as the gross degradation of young girls. Our young sisters deserve justice and not cover-ups!

It is important for all of you to know that it is not just the Egyptian government that seeks to silence the voices of dissent. The Trump administration also has an overt and covert campaign of suppression aimed at journalists, activists and servants of the people.

I will not be silenced! Will you?

Keith “Malik” Washington is co-founder and chief spokesperson for the End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement, a proud member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee and an activist in the Fight Toxic Prisons campaign. Read Malik’s work at ComradeMalik.com. Send our brother some love and light: Keith “Malik” Washington, 34481-037, USP Beaumont, P.O. Box 26030, Beaumont TX 77720.

Protect our leaders!

Malik is in grave danger and must be moved out of USP Beaumont. Please call the warden’s office, 409-727-8188, and politely ask that Keith Washington, 34481-037, be transferred to a FCI-level prison in California.

Also, please call the offices of friendly Congress members Rep. Al Green, 713-383-9234, and Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee, 713-655-0050. Ask them to urge the Bureau of Prisons to transfer him to California right away.

Write Malik a note of encouragement as well. The more calls and letters he receives, the safer he’ll be because the authorities will know that we, his many friends, supporters and defenders, are watching.

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End Prison Slavery, In solidarity, Prison conditions

Food For Thought

By Comrade Malik
Peace and blessings sisters and brothers1 As we head into 2020 and prepare for another national response to Prison Slavery — I’d like to share some words of wisdom from Dr. Naim Akbar:
“One of the things that was systematically done during slavery was the elimination or control of any emerging “head” or LEADER. Slave narratives and historical accounts are full descriptions of atrocities brought against anyone who exemplified REAL Leadship Capability. The Slave Holders realized their power and control over the slaves was dependent upon the absence of any indigenous leadership among slaves.” end of quote
Sisters and brothers — I AM that indigenous leadership the prisoncrats would love to eliminate or control. I will not be silenced! Dare to struggle, dare to win, all power to the people!
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End Prison Slavery, Prison conditions

Don’t Allow the Feds to Assassinate Me!

From Malik: November 12, 2019
Revolutionary Greetings Comrades!
 
There is no such thing as coincidences when you are an outspoken servant of the people.
 
Everything happens for a reason.
 
When I embraced this Life as a Freedom Fighter and Whistle Blower I knew there would come a time when the oppressors would place me in harm’s way and then feign ignorance. I think it’s time we all got more serious about protecting our most advanced political elements. Whether it be Kevin ‘Rashid’ Johnson or Sean Swain we must protect our comrades who are trapped inside these Razor-Wire Plantations!
 
Dare to struggle, Dare to win.
 
All Power to the People!
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End Prison Slavery, Prison conditions

Lock-Downs and Violence persist at USP Beaumont!!

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington – End Prison Slavery in Texas Movement

On Friday, October 4th, 2019 at approximately 9:45a.m. there was a bloody fight between two Asian Prisoners at USP Beaumont.  The fight took place on 1 Building Unit AB which was the location of a bloody and vicious Race Fight which sent 5 prisoners to the hospital on August 15th, 2019.  That incident resulted in a Month-Long Lockdown!!  The Fight on Friday caused the Warden of the FCC Complex to place the USP on a weekend Lockdown!!  That meant–No showers, No Visits!!  No Programming, and Peanut Butter and Jelly and Cheese Sandwiches!!  This has become a regular occurrence here at USP Beaumont.

The Management Model being employed here is not sustainable.   Not only are we on a perpetual state of LOCK DOWN Status now the Administration has initiated a $25.00 spending limit on Commissary in response to a fight between two prisoners from the same ‘Car’.  A ‘Car’ is kind of like a ‘Clique’ or Geographical Location.  For Instance, you have men from Texas here thus a Texas ‘Car’.  The two prisoners who fought on Friday (Oct 4th) were Asian thus the Asian ‘Car’.  But that does not justify this Group Punishment being implemented by the Administration.  Everybody Suffers!!!

Prior to my arrival here there had been Two Suicides at USP Beaumont.  These Suicides prompted the Removal of the previous Warden here at USP Beaumont.  The Warden was replaced by our Current Warden Mr. Larry Shults.  What is remarkable is that one of the prisoners who committed Suicide was an Asian Man who had written a detailed letter to the Federal Bureau of Prisons—Regional Office in Grand Prairie, Texas.  This letter explained that the conditions at USP Beaumont were having a detrimental effect on his Mental Health.   NO ONE LISTENED!!!   Conditions such as:

A.) Numerous Lockdowns (Excessively Long!)
B.) Lack of Employment opportunities
C.) Lack of Programming
D.) Substandard Food (Cheese and PB& J Sandwiches daily!!)
E.) Apathy among Staff
F.) Showers every 3 days(maybe!!!)

Today is October 7th, 2019 and I am here to tell all of you—Absolutely nothing has Changed!!!  Apparently replacing the Warden was a knee jerk reaction but things have only gotten worse—not better.   The administration does not care to listen to our grievances.   I LOVE LIFE!!  I have so much to look forward to but I can tell you that there are no realistic opportunities for success here at USP Beaumont and even someone like me who has every chance for success once I am released can easily be brought down by the depressing and stressful environment cultivated and maintained here at USP Beaumont!!!

As I said before, the reasoning for the Lockdown on Friday–October 4th, 2019 was because Two Asian prisoners got into a fight on their Housing Unit (AB  Bldg #1).  What is happening here at USP Beaumont is a Psy-Op program where Prison Administrators are attempting to get a CONDITIONED RESPONSE FROM PRISONERS!!!

The Administration knows there are going to be Fights that is common at a USP but they want to ‘TRAIN’ US TO FIGHT ON THE YARD.  On the Yard the Prison Guards can utilize their Shock Grenades, Rubber Bullets, Shots Fired Recordings and all the Digital Surveillance Cameras!!!  The Administration wants a VIDEO SHOW THAT THEY CAN PRESENT TO THE PUBLIC AND LEGISLATORS IN ORDER TO JUSTIFY THE FUNDING FOR THESE SLAVE KAMPS AND GULAGS.

The B.O.P. continues to lie to the Public at Large claiming that REHABILITATION IS PROVIDED BUT THE REALITY IS OUR LIVES ARE BEING RUINED AND DESTROYED.  Our Communities continue to suffer!!!  We are being Warehoused and treated inhumanely!!!  THIS IS MY REALITY.   THIS IS OUR REALITY.   Something must change!!!
Dare to Struggle, Dare to Win, All Power to the People!!!

Comrade Malik is a reporter and an abolitionist. Write him at:

Keith H. Washington #34481037
USP Beaumont

U.S. Penitentiary
P.O. Box 26030
BEAUMONT, TX  77720
U.S.A.

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End Prison Slavery, In solidarity

Forever Free!

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington (Chief Spokespersyn for the End Prison Slavery inTexas Movement)
Peace and blessings sisters and brothers! It’s me! Comrade Malik, your soldier for change reporting in from behind enemy lines. I am currently at the Joe Corley Detention Facility in Conroe, Texas. The countdown to my final release has begun. I still have a short stretch to do but this is nothing compared to the Twelve Long and Hard years I did inside the Texas State Gulag and Slave Kamp. My support team and I have a saying which is common among Abolitionists throughout the world, and that saying is: The Struggle Continues! Today, I want to introduce to you an extremely and gifted Poetic Activist named Romello Lee from the incredible and awesome metropolis known as Houston, Texas. Actually, there are many talented and aspiring musicians, artists, and community activists on lock. However, Romello’s mature personality and strong character got my attention. Romello’s story needs to be told and actually heard by the public at large. He has been falsely accused and charged with Humyn Trafficking. I know that this may sound controversial to many, but this INNOCENT, Young, and Islamic man deserves an opportunity to be heard. If you won’t listen for my sake, then I ask that you listen for the sake of HAZEL who is Romello’s beautiful and intelligent baby girl. You see sisters and brothers, I have always been pragmatic and calculating when I ask y’all to help me MOVE on something. When I take a chance on advocating for any cause or any individual, I diligently do my homework and research. I need y’all to know that Romello went to Trial in the State of Texas on these charges and was Exonerated! Romello beat not one, but TWO Life Sentences and Six additional charges!! I want all of you to think about that for a moment. Now ask yorself: “If Romello beat these charges in the State by trial why did the FEDS select him for this Modern day Lynching and Slavery! You see sisters and brothers, this Modern Day Lynching of young BLACK Males is not something isolated to the State of Texas. On the contrary, this is a pervsive and systemic problem which exists throughout the Criminal Justice system in Amerika! We saw this clearly in the case of Meek Mill and it has contined for decades in the case of our shining prince and imprisoned Servant of the People Mumia Abu Jamal! And now we are witnessing this travesty of Justice with our brother Romello Lee aka 43VA (FOREVER). Sisters and brothers and Comrades in struggle, this Freedom Campaign is not just about Romello, it is about those who will come after him also. I am talking about the falsely accused wimmin and men who become victims of overzealous prosecutors or Ill-Intentioned F.B.I. Agents seeking promotion and advancement no matter the cost or consequences.
With that said, I want to introduce y’all to my brother in Islam and our Comrade struggle— Hazel’s DAD, Mr. Romello Lee!

(RO’MELLO):hello from the otherside, (Ameen) this life of trials & tribulations, not a dollar sign to sin but sacrifice with an open heart, to be cheated on both sides by selflessness & misunderstandings! What rules the world when you cant put a price on a piece of mind? Damn, i never envisioned myself facilitated again, seeking a wrongful conviction, behind bars, through a glass, in a dorm, looking down dejected and depressed! Sometimes the right thing is the wrong thing as whats “wrong” could be righteous. Have you ever been passionate about sing someone you didnt know, for no reason? Have you ever owed somebody your life, when they never gave you anything? My brother kedrick johnson mentioned, some people only love you for what you can do for them/saviour. Imagine that when they’re talking about the objects you love the most, in the whole-wide-world. I understand its your heart by coice, your decision. Will you always be here, regardless, right or wrong? You wouldnt want to be here either if you were innocent, would you? I dont think so, when your subjected to viewing killings your first night federally imprisoned. Shanks, & people being thrown from a second floor balcony! Same blood on these jackie chans (original lowtop vans) may have come from the snake bites, cuts or wounds left open, that they tell “U.S.” (us) to breathe with! But, i was hurting too remember? Then god shouted, “forgive” & he’ll see it through, if not to lean on my own understanding, my spirit then quivered! (Al-fatihah) I’m doing months/calendars, on top of my time, uncharged! But, its righteous? For an hired agent, to take a stand & lie under oath, not even know the accused victims, or suspects govt. info., ages or etc. in a case investigated & on-going for over three yrs. & so, much more against, defendant, a man memorable, studied and covered in tattoos tha could not be identified! I know they hate, fire vs. Fire/Power. I’m fighting the oppressors!! I need y’all help! i miss my child!  My daughter needs me.. Not just a voice to put her sound asleep, but to shape, mold & nurture her to prepare her for this world, that is moving way too fast!! (You have to reverence the wound that bore you!!) Now, your a longway from a rap battle with the state of texas! this, is not, harris county? Your detained by the U.S. Marshalls? 25 yrs. To Life in the 3rd round? What do you say to the Mic? now do they love you? let my sisters & brothers speak for me! (Chant) END-PRISON-SLAVERY-IN-TEXAS!!.. forever, foreva. Ex-Alias (Moreno) @rgcmoreno2x www.chestrecords.bandcamp.com/win 

Song : Eminem – Mockingbird.

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