Read the full article in The Intercept.
Author Archives: Family and Friends
‘Acupuncture as Revolution’ now available in bookstores!
A thoroughly researched and insightful look at acupuncture’s radical history in NYC has been released by Brevis Press and is now available in bookstores worldwide. Rachel Pagones’ ‘Acupuncture as Revolution: Suffering, Liberation and Love’ provides not only a detailed account of Lincoln Detox, but also the lesser-known history of BAAANA featuring Dr. Mutulu Shakur in his own words throughout.
Check it out at independent booksellers like Left Bank Books!
August 2021 Legal and Health Update
We deeply appreciate everyone’s ongoing concern and actions in support of Mutulu. His situation is extremely urgent and his health is deteriorating rapidly. Family & Friends of Mutulu Shakur and the legal team are actively working to secure his freedom through compassionate release, clemency and all other administrative and legal avenues. Please sign the online clemency petition if you haven’t already and share it with others! We filed yet another compassionate release petition to the Bureau of Prisons on August 12th. He needs more attention and advocacy for the BOP to grant his petition.
A member of Dr. Shakur’s legal team who has known him for decades visited recently. He was shocked to find him in constant pain from the bone marrow cancer with nothing offered him for pain except highly addictive oxycodone, which he refuses to take so he can stay as focused and strong as possible under these circumstances. It is sad that the only pain medication being offered to him is a dangerous opioid not dissimilar to the opioids he developed acupuncture protocols to detox people from.
All across the nation, human rights and social justice organizers and the acupuncture and healing community are calling for the release of Dr. Shakur! Stay tuned to the Family & Friends of Mutulu Shakur social media accounts (links in sidebar) for updates!
‘Dope Is Death’ Podcast Dives Deeper into Themes from the Documentary
By the early 1970s, heroin was flooding the streets of New York City. Black and Puerto Rican neighborhoods like Harlem and the South Bronx were hardest hit. This four-part podcast series explores how Dr. Mutulu Shakur, stepfather of the late Tupac Shakur, along with members of the Black Panther Party and the Young Lords, combined community health with radical politics to create the first acupuncture detoxification program in America.
Over the course of the 1970s, the Lincoln Detox People’s Program became a fixture of hope in the South Bronx and detoxed thousands of people off of drugs. DOPE IS DEATH explores why this program was considered a threat to the political and social stability of the United States. And how its brightest star, celebrated community activist and healer Dr. Mutulu Shakur, ended up one of the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted until he was captured and convicted of RICO conspiracy.
Today, Dr. Mutulu Shakur remains incarcerated. Civil rights hero or enemy of the state? DOPE IS DEATH dives deep into the history of COINTELPRO and other legal tools that law enforcement can utilize to repress political dissidents.
Listen online at dopeisdeath.com/ or wherever you get your podcasts!
‘Dope is Death’ now available online
After running on the festival circuit last year, Dope is Death is now available online for viewers in the U.S.
Streaming online as part of Vice News’ The Short List with Suroosh Alvi:
For rental or purchase on iTunes:
Maroon Party for Liberation Gathering (March 20, 2021)
Join Maroon Party for Liberation this Saturday, March 20th from 3-5pm EST, for a screening of a short film on the radical history of acupuncture produced by Eana Meng followed by a discussion featuring:
- Talib Shakur (son of Dr. Mutulu Shakur)
- Dr. Shadidi Kinsey (former student of Dr. Shakur & founder of PEACE Health Center)
- Bro. Shep (Veteran Black Panther & Zulu King)
- Laura Whitehorn (former political prisoner & activist)
Join via Zoom
We, the North Sphere of the Maroon Liberation School, have initiated a response to the opioid epidemic (along with addictions of all kinds, trauma and stress relief) in a way that amplifies some of the genius that emerged after the Human Rights Movement through the efforts of Dr. Mutulu Shakur, Republic of New Afrika healer and acupuncturist.
We are inviting people to come together and extend the celebration of 50th Anniversary of the Lincoln Detox Center by considering it’s contribution to our current health crisis through a national Zoom Gathering on Saturday, March 20th from 3 to 5 pm Eastern.
The week following that gathering, we are inviting organizers to create Healing Hubs in tune with the unique needs of their communities. Right now, we have Healing Hubs being coordinated in Vermont, Los Angeles and Chicago (New York needs a co-coordinator) and are inviting others to consider generating a healing hub in their respective communities anytime March 20 – 28.
NADA, an easily accessible acupuncture technique developed by Dr. Mutulu Shakur was a grass-roots, people-powered response to heroin being planted in Black communities to halt/slow the progress of Human Rights for all. Now, with almost 2 million suffering from opioid addiction in the United States, we wish to emphasize this effective solution made available by Dr. Mutulu Shakur and support actions that can free him as a political prisoner.
Follow Rocky’s Fight for Freedom
Longtime supporter of Dr. Shakur, Adrian “Rocky” is making her boxing debut this summer! Follow her journey by subscribing to Roc’s House on YouTube! You don’t want to miss her in the ring as she continues the fight for freedom and justice for Dr. Shakur:
More info at Roc's House online
2021 Health and Legal Update
On October 14th, the stem cell irrigation started. On October 20th, I had a mandatory parole hearing, which I was again denied. I was notified of this denial on January 12th, and my next hearing will be in 2022. The final stage of the stem cell transplant took place from October 28th until November 14th, during which I was hospitalized. Upon my return from the stem cell procedure in November, I received the denial of compassionate release by the sentencing judge. Two days later, I was infected with COVID-19, in light of my immune system being compromised from stem cell replacement. I was put in quarantine in an unfavorable isolated area of the unit. I survived and won the battle to overcome the virus– now I am in the recovery period.
We are still waiting on a district Judge ruling on the Ninth Circuit habeas corpus petition and a response from the BOP on the renewed compassionate release petition in light of COVID-19. Not surprisingly, all past decisions have referred to a pre-trial motion filed in 1988 as a consideration in denying my release. This I believe is contrary to the spirit and intent of pre-trial motions, but more importantly offers no facts or law pertaining to the relief requested, from the manipulation of constitutional right filed in 3 federal jurisdictions over the 30-odd years of carrying out this sentence. Again I want to thank you all. There are still some avenues for release to explore available and I’m requesting your support.
I continue to hope that you are all healthy and using your wisdom to stay so. This virus is no joke, and clearly apolitical.
Mud and Water,
Dr. Mutulu Shakur
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NYT notes Mutulu and young Tupac’s backing vocals on ‘A Grain of Sand’ Album
A Grain of Sand: Music for the Struggle of Asians in America, a 1973 Paredon Records release, is widely recognized as the first album of Asian American music. Chris Kando Iijima, Joanne Nobuko Miyamoto, and William “Charlie” Chin deliver their activist message through simply–recorded acoustic guitars and vocals, with the occasional accompaniment of bongos, bass, and di zi, a Chinese flute. Soul, jazz, and blues elements are interwoven in the American folk style of the songs. The artists were also influenced by their solidarity with African American and Latin American social movements; for example, their musical collaboration with Puerto Rican duo Flora y Pepe and exposure to Latino artists while living in New York. The liner notes include a political statement by the musicians, lyrics, and a list of Asian American publications from the era:
The album Yellow Pearl released on Paredon was the poetic and groundbreaking “A Grain of Sand: Music for the Struggle by Asians in America,” which included anthems like “We Are the Children” and “Free the Land,” featuring backing vocals from Mutulu Shakur (his stepson, Tupac Shakur, sang along to “A Grain of Sand” as a child, according to Smithsonian Folkways Magazine). It was recorded in two and a half days at a small New York studio and that no-frills spontaneity brings the music alive still.–New York Times, February, 10, 2021