Hola mi gente,
Puerto Rican freedom fighter, Oscar López Rivera, finally got his freedom after President Obama pardoned him after serving over 30 years, most of them in isolation.
And that’s a good thing.
Also offered clemency today was Chelsea Manning, who should’ve been given a fuckin’ medal not prison time.
Oscar López Rivera is a political prisoner who was convicted in 1981 on federal charges of seditious conspiracy and conspiring to oppose U.S. authority over Puerto Rico by force. He was also accused of being a member of the FALN, the Armed Forces of National Liberation, which claimed responsibility for more than a hundred bombings to call attention to the colonial case of Puerto Rico. In 1999, then President Clinton commuted the sentences of 16 members of the FALN, but López refused to accept the deal because it did not include two fellow activists who have since been released.
López Rivera has maintained all along that the charges against him were strictly political:
… I think the fact that I was charged with seditious conspiracy to overthrow the government of the United States speaks for itself. But the charge in reference to Puerto Ricans has always been used for political purposes. It goes back to 1936. The first time that a group of Puerto Ricans was put in prison was by using the seditious conspiracy charge. And this is — has always been a strictly political charge used against Puerto Ricans.
Interestingly, when then President Bill Clinton’s offer of clemency was announced, Hillary Clinton supported their release. But in typical Clintonian fashion, Hillary rescinded her support when she took political flak from the right for her support. At the time she was gearing up for a run at the NY State senate seat. This highlights why Hillary lost to a reality show clown: she has never taken a stand on anything.
Gloria Quinones, one of hundreds of activists and religious leaders who worked for the release of the Puerto Rican nationalists, called Mrs. Clinton’s repudiation of the President’s clemency grant “a real insult” to the nearly one million Puerto Ricans living in New York.
“She thinks that we are politically expendable, insignificant to her campaign,” Ms. Quinones said.
At the time each of the prisoners had served more than 19 years, longer than the amount of time usually served for the crimes they were convicted of committing.
None of the prisoners was found guilty of murder, bombing or hurting a person.
Missing from the list of pardons, tragically, were Mumia abu Jamal and Leornard Peltier. My view is that while this is a small step addressing the problem of the crackdown of political dissention, it’s a very scrawny one.
My name is Eddie and I’m in recovery from civilization…
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