Black Liberty Matters

With the murder of George Floyd, the demand for respect for the lives of black Americans has exploded into the streets. Yet, after two decades of imprisonment of Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin (f/k/a H. Rap Brown), the demand for the respect of the LIBERTY of black Americans remains shockingly mute. Is it that Americans value liberty less than life (Patrick Henry is turning over in his grave) or is it that a century and a half after passage of the 13th amendment abolishing slavery Americans are still loath to admit that liberty, no less than life, is right for black people as well as whites?

On July 1, 2020, the Islamic Circle of North America live-streamed a conversation between Imam Khalid Griggs and Imam Jamil’s son Kairi Al-Amin, Esq. on the story of Imam Jamil Al-Amin’s struggle and updating his situation. Kairi explained that his father has seen more clearly than most the necessity of a bridge between the youth and the elders of a community. Imam Khalid noted that Imam Jamil is an excellent example of the hadith that the Prophet (pbuh) said that the best before Islam will be the best in Islam once they understand the din. Jamil “was who he was before Islam, and just became a better version after he embraced Islam.”

Imam Khalid asked Kairi in his professional opinion as a lawyer if there is any precedent for someone having a lifetime gag order imposed after his conviction so he can never discuss the falsehood of his conviction. Kairi responded that there is no official gag order, but, rather, that any request for an interview has been routinely denied for twenty years. Even Mumia Abu-Jamal has a radio show. But knowing “the power of [Imam Jamil]’s words to move people” (when “they put the leader of the Aryan Nation in a cell next to him he took shahadah“) so after that they used solitary confinement and federal custody to prevent his words from reaching a public kept in darkness. It’s never been about the murder (of which a video of the actual murderer confessing now has definitively shown Imam Jamil to be innocent), Kairi says, but “about his influence.” If he has the power to convince the leader of the Aryan Nation to embrace Islam, what impact might his words have on a sleeping nation that had to wait for a video of a man being strangulated before they realized that black lives matter?

In 2002 Imam Jamil was convicted of killing a police officer two years earlier. Deemed too high profile to be held by state authorities, he was transferred to a federal “supermax” detention in 2007. In 2014 he was transferred to a federal medical center due to his deteriorating health under incarceration, and since 2018 he has been incarcerated in a federal penitentiary in Arizona. He should be released completely, not on humanitarian grounds, but on the grounds of his innocence.

Kairi reviewed all the evidence that demonstrates his father’s innocence. The strongest piece of evidence is that even before the trial ended another man confessed to the crime and continues to profess his guilt to this day. There are now 48,000 signatures on a petition for his release or for at least a new trial in which evidence in his defense would be admitted. You can contact the Fulton County district attorney’s office directly.

Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad, Ph.D.
Minaret of Freedom Institute
www.minaret.org

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