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The Move 9:25 and Counting

Long version: mp3, 3.18 MBs, 3:58
Short version: mp3, 2.67 MBs, 3:20

[Col. Writ. 5/12/03]

"...BUT LET THIS BE CLEAR TO YOU JUDGES, ALL THOSE YOU REPRESENT AND THOSE *THEY* ARE FRONTING FOR, THE MOVE ORGANIZATION IS NOT FOOLED ONE *BIT* ABOUT THE DECEPTIVE RAPE OF *GOD'S* SUBJECTS YOU CRIMINALS HAVE *LONG* BEEN GUILTY OF..."
– John Africa, MOVE Founder, The Judges Letter , (ca. 1978)

The imprisoned members of the MOVE Organization, veterans of the police assault on MOVE headquarters on August 8th, 1978 are still fighting for justice, almost 25 years after their encagement.

Recent decisions from state courts are proving that the unholy War against the MOVE Organization is still going on, with judges acting like soldiers for the status quo.

The MOVE 9 filed their state appeals (called PCRAs) in 1993. The lower court took 7 years to decide the petitions. They were denied on September written by the trial judge, Edwin Malmed, as the basis for denying relief. About a year later, a 3-judge panel of the Pa. Superior Court, composed of judges Ford Elliot, Hester and Brosky denied the appeals of the MOVE 9, again citing Malmed's opinion.

The court rejected an argument that the trial judge was deeply biased against the MOVE 9, both in the trial and the sentencing phases. They apparently merely relied on the claims of the prosecutors, rather than actually checking the record of the MOVE trial. As the MOVE 9 have pointed out, the Superior Court panel claimed in their opinion, "... [We] note that the trial court saw a video tape of Officer Ramp's murder and saw a bullet come *from* MOVE headquarters and strike Officer Ramp...".

There's a few problems with the Superior Court's recitation. Turning aside the obvious absurdity (when's the last time *you* actually saw a bullet's path on a videotape?), the MOVE 9 have pointed to another flaw in their reasoning; Malmed's written opinion never stated any such thing. The MOVE 9, in a collective letter to their supporters, noted:

"There were three police videotapes presented as evidence at our trial, and on every one of the tapes the picture is clear until the moment they say Ramp was shot. At that point the cameras *malfunctioned* and when the picture is clear again, Ramp is lying on the ground. Since the trial, all three police videotapes have mysteriously *disappeared!*"
[On The Move Newsletter (Mar. ‘03; Is.5:p.2)].

For imprisoned MOVE members, the point couldn't be clearer: "The point is that the Superior Court not only made an unfair ruling against us, they *lied* and added this lie into court records against us." This is just more proof, they argue, "that there is no justice in the courts for MOVE. The only way the courts, this system, is going to release MOVE is through the pressure of the people."

For nearly a quarter of a century the MOVE 9 has been consigned to dungeons across the state of Pennsylvania. Their innocence, to the judicial soldiers of the ongoing War against MOVE, is all but irrelevant.

When Courts cite passages from opinions that don't exist; when they create ‘evidence' out of the air, as they did in the MOVE appeals... why have courts? Why not have a lottery? Why not just roll dice? Could it be any more unfair? Any more the dance of chance?

The MOVE 9 continue their battles for freedom; and continue providing an impressive example, to all who wish to see, of resistance and freedom fighting from the state's repression.

If you want to help free the MOVE 9, please contact them at the information provided below:

The MOVE Organization
P.O. Box 19709
Philadelphia, PA 19143
Phone: 610-499-0979
E mail

*Free the MOVE 9!*


Check out Mumia's NEW book:
"Faith of Our Fathers: An Examination of the Spiritual Life of African and African-American People" at www.africanworld.com

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WE WHO BELIEVE IN FREEDOM CAN *NOT* REST!!

Submitted by: Sis. Marpessa

Text © copyright 2003 by Mumia Abu-Jamal.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of the author.