After spending nearly half a century in prison, leftist revolutionaries and political prisoners David Gilbert and Russell Maroon Shoatz (who also spent 22 years in solitary confinement) were released earlier this year. In this episode of Rattling the Bars, TRNN Executive Producer Eddie Conway speaks with Charles Hopkins, better known as Mansa Musa, about the historic occasion of Gilbert and Shoatz’s release and the reasons for their imprisonment. Conway and Hopkins are both former Black Panthers and longtime political prisoners who engaged in radical organizing and education programs while locked up. While reflecting on the historical climate in which they, Gilbert, Shoatz, and a generation of radicals were killed or imprisoned in the 1960s and ‘70s, Hopkins and Conway also offer advice to today’s social justice activists on the imperatives of community organizing and the continuing threat posed by the draconian apparatus of state repression.
Pre-Production/Studio/Post Production: Cameron Granadino
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