I began this blog in May 2009 following the death of Marcia Powell at Perryville State Prison in Goodyear, Arizona. It is not intended to prescribe the path that leads to freedom from the prison industrial complex.

Rather, these are just my observations in arguably the most racist, fascist, militaristic state in the nation at a critical time in history for a number of intersecting liberation movements. From Indigenous resistance to genocidal practices, to the fight over laws like SB1070 and the ban on Ethnic Studies, Arizona is at the center of many battles for human rights, and thus the struggle for prison abolition as well - for none are free until all are. I retired the blog in APRIL 2013.

Visit me now at Arizona Prison Watch or Survivors of Prison Violence-AZ

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Veterans' Parade: Sign Ideas, Innocence, etc.

Unless anyone calls or emails me (use and wants to come over to my place this PM, everyone is on their own tomorrow.

Get there early: check out the staging area (see the prison abolitionist blog post Veterans for Peace and Abolition)

Go in teams of at least 2 - you need pictures of eachother demonstrating. That''s part of the point.

Find high ground or a good corner for visibility.

Spread out.

Remember to try to insert your images into media opportunities with the candidates.

I think we should hold something of a silent, dignified vigil, like Women in Black do. Maybe even wear black, out of respect. If folks ask what Free Marcia Powell means, I'd tell them who she was, but point them to the website to figure out how we plan to set her free - bring pieces of paper (business card size) you can hand out (Sorry not to have that - we need some help). Let the signs evoke the questions that people will need to find answers to by thinking, googling, going to the website, etc.

More Sign Ideas - check out the earlier posts for others (whether you make signs specifically for the day or for the campaign season):

- try to have running along the bottom, so people who actually talk to you can get the website address;

- think about having some signs targeted at specific politicians that you might use several times between now and elections;

- bring extra sign-making supplies if possible - you can make new signs on the back of existing ones, and want some flexibility in case you get a great idea or see a new target.

- Make fliers to tape along the route.

- Sidewalk chalk does a pretty job - gorgeous on blacktop. Flourescent colors are great. Take photos for us - especially if your art is being admired. Bring a bucket so the whole family can draw "free marcia powell" everywhere...well, I don't know what city laws say about where that's okay though, so think on it....

- I carried my signs to the parade route inside a flattened box, which I tucked under my arm, then set up the box when I got there, on which I taped one of my signs near the beginning of the route where I anchored myself. That can double or triple one's sign-holding capacity, and it can be positioned strategically for the crowd, the media, or the parade marchers to see. I also used the box to put some of my extra signs, supplies, etc. in - very useful if you plan to chase after the governor's car.

(remember: packing tape, poster board, broad ink pens/paint, moving box)

** some stats on the incidence of suicides, PTSD, substance abuse among vets would also be helpful for signs or fliers - just tie it to the prison industrial complex somehow**

9% U.S. Prisoners = Veterans

Honor Veterans: Protect Prisoner Rights

GOV Brewer: Remember Vets in Prison

Goddard: Free Marcia Powell

Thomas: Free Courtney Bisbee

(I know - what's with the Thomas one? He has a few innocence claims to deal with before he leaves office - he can't just keep people sitting there - he needs to let some people free. Let's push on him to free Courtney. We need to make the innocence claims a campaign embarrassment, getting out the message that this could happen to anyone if he becomes Attorney General. People should be warned that his ego and refusal to admit a mistake makes him a dangerous, not necessarily "successful" prosecutor.)



Wednesday, November 11, 2009
• 9:30 a.m. – Governor to Participate in Veterans Day Parade
Phoenix VA Health Care System
650 East Indian School Road, Phoenix

Phoenix Veterans Day Parade Start
650 E. Indian School Road

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