I went to see this documentary on Saturday. I learned about Mumia Abu Jamal via Democracy Now! but this was a much more in-depth expose into who he is as a man, and as a journalist. I encourage everyone to see this documentary. If you don’t know about Mumia Abu Jamal it’s time to learn about this brilliant writer, journalist finally released from Death Row to life imprisonment. He spoke out against the corrupt, racist, police department and Frank Rizzo their fearless leader a thug of immense magnitude and he paid the ultimate price for speaking up and out. He is a powerful force for good on the planet and our society either assassinates or incarcerates powerful black men. And Philadelphia was a police state under Frank Rizzo and is also one of the most racist cities in Americka. Well, let’s face it, as someone said, all of the U.S. is Mississippi. Go see it.
“I made the film because, you know, you wake up in a country, Amy, and you realize that the country is being run by mass murderers, economic rapists and general, run-of-the-mill psychopaths, so I started to look for some sanity. And for me, I found sanity in a dark, dank hall on death row in Pennsylvania. I had been a longtime reader of Mumia’s material, listening to the incredible broadcasts that you guys have broadcast. And my partner, Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio, has—a Herculean task—gotten his voice out all over the world. I wanted to offer some sanity. You know, John Pilger says that we have made the unthinkable normal in this world, and the normal unthinkable. I wanted to offer a ray of hope and some sanity, that Mumia, I think, offers all of us. You know, the people in this country have been offered war and violence and no healthcare and, you know, horrific contribution to the death of the planet. Mumia offers the opposite of that. And people ask me, they say, you know, “Well, how do you make a film about someone so radical?” I don’t think Mumia is radical at all. What I find radical are people that can lob cruise missiles into neighborhoods. So that’s what we’re trying to do: We’re trying to offer sanity.” Stephen Vittoria, director “Long Distance Runner” from interview on Democracy Now!
Also Listen to DemocracyNow!’s 12-minute LIVE telephone interview with Mumia Abu-Jamal taped this morning and followed up with an on-air interview with LDR director/producer Steve Vittoria and LDR producer Noelle Hanrahan.
MUMIA ABU-JAMAL: We live now in a national security state, where the United States is fast becoming one of the biggest open-air prisons on earth. I mean, we can speak about freedom, and the United States has a long and distinguished—
OPERATOR: You have 60 seconds remaining.
MUMIA ABU-JAMAL: —long and distinguished history of talking about freedom, but have we exampled freedom? And I think the answer should be very clear: We have not. And we’re becoming a less free nation every day. And I think people should rise up, and I think they should organize. And I think, frankly, they should raise hell. You know, if you don’t want to join our movement, join some movement, but damn it, do something, because we are in an age that we may never be able to capture again.