Very soon, Judge Keenan will decide whether to order my release or to continue my incarceration. He will make this decision based in large part on my claim that what began as coercive confinement has clearly become punitive – meaning that there never was any chance that incarceration would intimidate me into cooperating with this Grand Jury, and that after serving 7 months in this place, my resolve has only grown stronger.
This is not to say that I haven’t suffered – I’ve lost more during my incarceration that I ever thought possible. I grieve for every goodbye, and I doubt that some of these scars will ever heal. It is during truly difficult times that reveal what lives in the core of people, and that knowledge can sometimes be incredibly painful. But so too can that knowledge make us stronger; I take comfort from those of my fellows who have also refused to be made into subjects of this place. My own resistance is far from unique. It is found in those who have always said NO to those in power. My refusal to cooperate is my contribution to this tradition of defiance to arbitrary and repressive power. I will not cooperate. I will not be institutionalized. No compromise in this. I will not sacrifice my dignity in order to leave this place, and that’s not nothing.
I offer my belated but heartfelt condolences to the family and partner of Herman Wallace. Please take a moment to write to Albert Woodfox, the last member of the Angola 3 still in prison. Please also take a moment to participate in the Move Marie campaign, at SupportMarieMason.org.
With love, with dignity, in solidarity, for anarchy
– Jerry Koch