Originally posted by @vivify
Kaepernick is completely wrong. Assata Shakur is a completely indefensible person. Kaepernick not only gave to an organization that honors her violence, but tweeted in honor of her birthday.
Kaepernick is completely wrong here. NFL players have have shown solidarity with police, even locking arms with officers on the field. His actions delegitimize ...[text shortened]... pidemic. Violence is cops is equally wrong, and let's hope that never becomes a problem either.
"Assata Shakur is a completely indefensible person."
--Vivify (who evidently tends to buy mainstream US media narratives)
Some people, including black Americans (such as Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza),
white Americans (such as historian H Bruce Franklin), and non-Americans disagree with Vivify.
There's controversy about the fairness of Assata Shakur's treatment in the US criminal justice system.
Her supporters (including her defense lawyer William Kunstler and Angela Davis) contend
that she was unfairly convicted on account of racism and political persecution (FBI's COINTELPRO).
"COINTELPRO ... was a series of covert, and *often illegal*, projects conducted by
the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) aimed at surveilling, infiltrating,
discrediting, and disrupting American political organizations."
"Between 1973 and 1977, in New York and New Jersey, Shakur was indicted ten times,
resulting in seven different criminal trials. Shakur was charged with two bank robberies,
the kidnapping of a Brooklyn heroin dealer, the attempted murder of two Queens police
officers stemming from a January 23, 1973 failed ambush, and eight other felonies
related to the Turnpike shootout. Of these trials, three resulted in acquittals,
one in a hung jury, one in a change of venue, one in a mistrial due to pregnancy, and
*one in a conviction*; three indictments were dismissed without trial."
"The prosecution did not need to prove that Shakur fired the shots that killed either
Trooper Foerster or Zayd Shakur: being an accomplice to murder carries an equivalent
life sentence under New Jersey law."
"Shakur was identified as a political prisoner as early as October 8, 1973 by Angela Davis,"
"An international panel of seven jurists were invited by Hinds to tour a number of U.S. prisons,
and concluded in a report filed with the United Nations Commission on Human Rights that
the conditions of her solitary confinement were "totally unbefitting any prisoner".
Their investigation, which focused on alleged human rights abuses of political prisoners,
cited Shakur as "one of the worst cases" of such abuses and including her in "a class of
victims of FBI misconduct through the COINTELPRO strategy and other forms of illegal
government conduct who as political activists have been selectively targeted for provocation,
false arrests, entrapment, fabrication of evidence, and spurious criminal prosecutions."
Amnesty International, however, did not regard Shakur as a former political prisoner."
The Black Liberation Army (BLA) succeeded in breaking Assata Shakur out of prison in 1979.
For several years, evidently, she stayed concealed in the USA, despite the FBI's efforts to track her down.
By 1984, she had escaped to Cuba, where she was granted political asylum.
She has lauded Fidel Castro and the Communist government of Cuba.
Assata Shakur has received significant, though far from universal, support among African Americans.
"The National Conference of Black Lawyers and Mos Def are among the professional
organizations and entertainers to support Assata Shakur."
"In 2015, Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza writes: “When I use Assata’s powerful
demand in my organizing work, I always begin by sharing where it comes from, sharing
about Assata’s significance to the Black Liberation Movement, what its political purpose
and message is, and why it’s important in our context."
"Why Cuba will never send Assata Shakur to the U.S."
--Achy Obejas (29 December 2014)
"In May 2013, on the 40th anniversary of her arrest, Assata Shakur was suddenly and
inexplicably named to the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorists list, with an award of up to $2 million
for her capture. She was the first woman ever put on that list, but she gained that notorious
promotion at a time when she was doing little that could be conceived of as criminal."
"Aaron Ford, special agent in charge of the FBI's Newark office, said, "While living openly
and freely in Cuba, she continues to maintain and promote her terrorist ideology.
She provides anti-U.S.-government speeches, espousing the Black Liberation Army's
message of revolution and terrorism."
"In other words, even by FBI standards, Shakur was raised to terrorist level on pretty shaky grounds:
for speaking and writing, usually protected activities. At the time, I speculated in an essay
for WBEZ that Shakur's addition to the FBI list might have been a way to pressure Cuba
to release U.S. Agency for International Development worker Alan Gross."
"Both countries have inherent interests, ethical and not so ethical, in allowing Shakur to die of natural causes in Havana.
The first is practical: If the U.S. makes a serious request for Shakur, Cuba will undoubtedly counter
with a request of its own for Luis Posada Carriles. The 86-year-old, who has long ties to
the CIA and its covert activities in Latin America, is now living out his old age in Miami.
Among his crimes: He was convicted in Panama of the 1976 bombing of a Cuban airliner
that killed 73 civilians. He has been suspected of planting bombs in Havana in 1997
(including one that killed an Italian tourist). He was arrested in Panama for an attempt on
Fidel Castro's life but pardoned by the U.S.-supported president of that country in 2004."
"Cuba has long been a haven for African-Americans who've committed what might be
interpreted as political crimes. Black Panthers such as Eldridge Cleaver, Huey Newton and
Raymond Johnson all spent time in Cuba in the 1960s (not always happily). At one time
it was speculated that as many as 90 African-Americans were living in Cuba under asylum."