In solidarity

Civic engagement of Texas college students obstructed: We must rock the vote in 2020!

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

Originally Published in San Francisco Bay View

Damon Johnson, a sophomore at Prairie View A&M University in rural Texas, voted on campus in the November 2018 mid-term election. This photo is posted at the top of a New York Times story headlined “‘They Don’t Really Want Us to Vote’: How Republicans Made It Harder.” The Times acknowledges that Prairie View A&M, a historically Black university, has long been a stronghold for students fighting for the right to vote. – Photo: Todd Spoth, New York Times

It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that Republicans in the Texas House of Representatives are attempting to sabotage and obstruct the voting rights of college students in Texas.

Once again, I must shine a strobe light on another surreptitious scheme by alt-right operatives in Texas who seek to aid “their man” in the White House. We see y’all!

Last year, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott appointed David Whitley as secretary of state. Whitley conspired with Department of Public Safety Director Steve McCraw and created a bogus list of approximately 95,000 Texans Whitley claimed were non-citizens and should be purged from the voter rolls.

Thankfully, Democratic Texas Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, as well as the Texas Civil Rights Project were paying close attention. After an in-depth investigation as well as a rebuke from a federal judge, David Whitley was removed and rightfully so. Whitley targeted Latinx and Hispanic populations with his attempted voting roll purge. The purpose of Whitley’s actions seems to be motivated by the large Democrat turnout in the 2018 mid-term elections.

Now in 2020, Texas State Rep. Greg Bonnen has crafted House Bill 1888. House Bill 1888 prohibits the use of temporary voting stations in Texas. The eradication of these temporary voting sites hits college students in Texas exceptionally hard.

You would think that politicians like Bonnen would be supportive of the civic engagement of college age people, but the growing interest of 18-30-year-olds in the voting and legislative process has scared the Republicans in Texas. Scared them to the point of creating laws such as HB 1888 that block access to the voting box!

Bonnen will most likely feign innocence when questioned about his motives in crafting this House bill. However, David Whitley and Greg Abbott did the same exact thing last year when I exposed them.

In order to combat these schemes by Bonnen and his cronies in the Texas House, college students at institutions such as the University of Texas at Austin, Prairie View A&M, Texas Tech, Texas Southern University, and the Aggies at Texas A&M must fight back.

Even if you are not a progressive, liberal, or democratic socialist, you should still fight for your right to access the ballot box in Texas.

Does it not seem strange to you that a federal prisoner like myself is sounding the alarm? Why aren’t more mainstream journalists in Texas speaking up?

I want more college students in Texas and all over the United States to start thinking about the power and significance of your vote. For instance, what if you are a freshman or sophomore in Texas who has earned an academic scholarship. Your GPA is excellent, everything is going great, you’re poised for success and then you become pregnant.

The state of Texas has made it notoriously difficult to access a physician who can carry out a safe abortion. Wouldn’t you like to change that? If you don’t vote, you can’t change that!

There are numerous arguments that I can make. My intent is to force or rather encourage you to think. The “powers that be” in Texas thought they got rid of me by burying me in a federal prison in Louisiana, but I’m still serving the people and I won’t shut up!

Get out and vote! Dump Trump in 2020! 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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Prison conditions

Letter citing obstruction of programming, and denial of access to courts

Greetings ladies and gentlemen,

My name is Keith “Malik” Washington, I am a fairly well known journalist, activist, and jailhouse lawyer.  I am currently serving a 24-month federal sentence which was imposed upon me for leaving a half-way house in 2007.  I am serving my sentence at the United States Penitentiary located in Pollock, Louisiana.

I have approximately 15 to 17 months left on my federal sentence. I have recently discovered some systemic problems which exist within the Federal Bureau of Prisons.  These current problems obstruct and prohibit thousands of prisoners from accessing or participating in rehabilitation, education, or substance abuse treatment programs.

This obstruction and denial of access to programming is diametrically opposed to the language contained within the First Step Act of 2018. However, blocking or disrupting access to programming pales in comparison to the overt and blatant practice I’ve encountered whereby federal BOP employees purposely deny federal prisoners access to the courts. This is especially pronounced at the federal USPs, like the one I am currently housed in.

In light of recent Supreme Court rulings such as: U.S. vs Davis, U.S. vs Johnson, as well as Rehaif vs. U.S., we now have literally thousands of federal prisoners attempting to file writs of habeas corpus via §2255 as well as §2241 motions in order to persuade U.S. District Courts to vacate, correct, or set aside federal sentences which have been deemed illegal by these recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings.

Federal prison administrators realize that these ongoing lockdowns limit access to law library materials and basically place an obstacle to freedom. Thus far since returning to federal prison, I have been housed at three federal facilities. One of which is the federal transit center located in Oklahoma City, OK. At this facility, federal prisoners have access to Corrlinks, a law library computer, along with a terminal that can print law library materials along with Corrlinks/Tru-link messages.

At USP Beaumont and USP Pollock which are located in Texas and Louisiana respectively, I’ve witnessed an unofficial policy and pattern of practice whereby federal prison officials:

  1. Obstruct or flat out deny access to programming

  2. Deny access to the courts

These violations are manifesting themselves when complex Wardens utilize lengthy lockdowns in order to address instances of violence or any disruption of operations at any USP.  These lockdowns have actually become an accepted practice throughout the BOP.

At this time I am humbly seeking your help in communicating this problem to the BOP Office of General Counsel, the U.S. Inspector General, the media, members of U.S. Congress, as well as the offices of federal BOP Executive Director Kathleek Hawk Sawyer and Assistant BOP Director Hugh Hurwitz who is in charge of overseeing and implementing the BOP’s re-entry programming as codified and described within the First Step Act.

Ladies and gentlemen, the denial of access to the courts is an especially egregious violation of U.S. Constitutional rights.  With that said, I would like to offer some suggestions which could resolve this current miscarriage of justice. Suggestions that could be implemented immediately.

My suggestion is that USP Pollock prison administrators install a computer terminal and printer on singular units that house General Population and Special Housing Unit prisoners. This computer monitor and printer would be used to access and print legal materials and/or Corrlinks and Tru-links messages.

The denial of access to the courts violation can be easily solved by providing prisoners who have active legal cases an hour or two a day to access the law library computer and printer on the Housing Unit.

This law library computer and printer access is especially crucial when we continue to see the use of lengthy lockdowns as a management tool used by federal prison Wardens. Furthermore, it has become a custom, policy, and pattern of practice for USP Wardens to prohibit prisoners from purchasing paper, legal envelopes, or even business envelopes from the Commissary during these extensive lockdowns.

Federal prison administrators have completely ignored the fact that numerous prisoners throughout BOP have active litigation, which can have a significant impact on whether or not they will ever experience life outside of a U.S. federal penitentiary. For this reason, and many more, I request your help in communicating my concerns to the proper authorities.

Respectfully,

Keith “Malik” Washington

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Uncategorized

Manufactured War in Order to Hold the Presidency (We’ve seen this before) 

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

President Trump addresses the nation last week about his administration’s standoff with Iran. (Alex Brandon/AP)

The assassination of Iranian General Sulimani by the United States of America comes as no surprise to me. This event brings us one step closer to the inevitable. War with the Islamic Republic of Iran has been on the “wish list” of the Trump administration since he was sworn in three years ago. 

The timing is perfect. Not only is Trump facing impeachment but Trump’s close friend, Benjamin Netanyahu is facing bribery charges which threaten to oust him from the seat of leadership in Israel, but may send “BiBi” to prison! 

What better “Art of War” strategy is there for an embattled president than to foment war in order to secure power for one more term. 

This strategy is not unprecedented in fact, Trump is using a similar strategy that Russian President Vladimir Putin used when he first rose to power in Russia. 

In 1999 – 2000, there had been a string of bombings in Russia and many of the targets were civilian housing, as well as housing used by Russian military personnel. Putin was a Colonel in the KGB, which soon would become the FSB.

Putin and his cronies blamed the vicious bombings on Chechnyan separatists. Right around the same time, Putin was running for president and used the Chechnyan conflicts, as a method to bolster his popularity in order to paint himself as a protector of the Russian people from the horrible Islamic threat posed by the Chechnyans. 

However, we would find out that all of this was deceptions and lies, created by an old KGB hand, who specializes in covert-ops, which manipulate public opinion. 

Let me be clear. I am talking about Vladimir Putin! Putin is the fascist snake! 

During the bombings in 1999, there was another Vladimir who worked for the Russian state security, and who was commissioned to investigate the rash of bombings. That man was Vladimir Litvinenko. What comrade Litvinenko discovered would change the course of his life forever! 

One day on investigating the bombings, Mr. Litvinenko visited an apartment complex in Russia. Litvinenko went down to the basement of the apartment building and found an entire pallet of the deadly explosive known as RDX. 

There been a residue of RDX found at the blast sites of previous bombings connected to this ongoing investigation. Litvinenko traced to the origin of this particular palette of RDX and discovered it came from the local FSB office!! 

FSB as in Russian State Security!

Litvinenko found out that it was not the Chechnyans bombing Russian citizens. 

Russia had a bloodthirsty and power-hungry ‘puppet master’ who placed his ambitions above the safety and security of the Russian people. I want to be crystal clear here. I’m talking about Vladimir Putin. 

Nevertheless, you need to know that President Donald J. Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu are most certainly not “choir boys”, and you can bet your bottom dollar that the CIA and the Israeli Mossad have some more special dirty tricks in store for the Iranian regime. 

I could expand on this topic further, but I will end by saying, 

I see your Mr Pompeo! 

I see you Mark Esper! 

The Emperor is naked and we see the festering sores of the imperialist monarch. 

And if I see you, so to others! 

The people are smarter than you think!

Dare to Struggle, Dare to win, ALL power to the people!

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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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In solidarity

A New Years Message from Comrade Mailk

This New Years message is read by Malik’s friend justin adkins

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.

Send our comrade some love and light: Keith Washington, 34481-037, USP Pollock, P.O. Box 2099, Pollock LA 71467.

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Prison conditions

The reality of federal prison, Part 1

Prisoners vs. guards
by Dave Gilson

by Keith ‘Comrade Malik’ Washington, member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC)

(originally published by San Francisco Bay View)

Part 1: Truth hurts

Comrades, I don’t have to be long-winded in order to describe what is happening here.

In federal prison here in Amerika, approximately 80 percent of prisoners regardless of race are abusing illicit drugs. Suboxone, Meth and K-2 are the drugs of choice for federal male prisoners. I cannot and should not speak about what the conditions are like for our sisters because I feel a woman should tell that story. Right now, I’m relaying my first-hand experience in an all-male high security federal prison.

I have been clean and sober for a little over 12 years – my perspective is clear and my analysis of the situation is concise.

The presence of drugs brings violence. Debts are accrued and they must be paid – or else! Vicious acts of violence materialize daily – FACT.

Federal prison officials in Washington, D.C., have factored in the violence and current drug epidemic as they put together long term plans for the operation of high security facilities. The first attack made by prisoncrats is on our First Amendment rights.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons makes the erroneous claim that the drugs which are present here come in via U.S. Mail. This lie is being fed to the public in order to justify draconian suppression policies which obstruct and restrict incoming and outgoing mail. This destroys family ties!

What you know is that the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) relies on secrecy in order to keep the public at large ignorant and blind to the abuse and injustices federal prisoners are routinely subjected to. Cut all lines of communication!

First they cut the mail. The next move is to discontinue contact visits! This is the plan. Most are oblivious to the subtle changes because the drugs have everyone in a state of unconsciousness. I am wide awake.

Are you?

There is a financial dynamic at play here. The drugs produce violence and with that comes medical costs as well as logistical problems. If a prisoner gets beat down because he owes a $500 drug debt, he obviously cannot be placed back on the prison compound.

Now multiply this incident by 1,000 per week! That is 1,000 violent assaults resulting in injuries and sometimes death – and then transfers.

The next step they take is the mass lockdown of most U.S. penitentiaries in the United States! Instead of a programming schedule which allows prisoners out of their cells from 6:15 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., we will be locked down in our cells for 22 hours a day and given only an hour and a half to two hours of out-of-cell time.

The justification will be security.

Most are sleepwalking in here, but I am wide awake.

These drastic changes like video visits and lockdowns are being gradually introduced and are creating a more inhumane environment. Will this stop the drugs and violence? I think not. I know a secret that you don’t know. More later, comrades. Stay woke!

Dare to struggle, Dare to win, All Power to the People.

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. Visit his website at ComradeMalik.com. Send our brother some love and light: Keith Washington, 34481-037, USP Pollock, P.O. Box 2099, Pollock LA 71467.

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Uncategorized

I’ve Found Love!!

by Keith ‘Malik’ Washington

Peace and Blessings Sisters and Brothers!!!  I have spent many, many years in Prison and I have continued and will continue to Struggle Against these Systems of Oppression.

Although I have had the unwavering support of a growing number of passionate Activists, Scholars, and Freedom Fighters there has been something missing in my Life.  I have cried many nights because I have been Lonely wanted someone to Love me on a Persynal, Romantic, and Deeper Level.  I WON’T BE CRYING ANYMORE!!!

I HAVE FOUND IN SIS. NUBE BROWN THE PERFECT COMPANION, SOUL MATE AND PARTNER IN THIS STRUGGLE FOR HUMYN RIGHTS!  You May Know Nube Brown, she is truly a remarkable Humyn Being.

It is important to me–to Announce this to the World!!   I LOVE NUBE!!!

Sisters and Brothers–please know that my decision to relocate to the Bay Area in California had alot to do with my committment to the Bay View Newspaper.  However, I CAN-NOT SEE MYSELF LIVING WITHOUT NUBE BROWN!  I want to be close to her and I am pleading with all of you to Help Us Be Close Together!!!  Help Nube and I persuade these oppressors who operate the Federal Bureau of Prisons to Honor our Request to have me Transferred to California but our main struggle will be transferring my State Parole from Texas to California and I believe with the help of Attorney Tanika J. Solomon and Attorney Anne Weills we will be successful.  There are some incredible things materializing as we begin the year 2020.  I’m excited!!!  I hope you are too.

DARE TO STRUGGLE, DARE TO WIN, ALL POWER TO THE PEOPLE!!!   (PANTHER LOVE!!!!!)

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