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green scare | prisons & prisoners

6 Years - A Note from Eric McDavid's Partner

Dear friends,

Today marks the 6th year of Eric's arrest and incarceration. I'm not
quite sure why I always feel compelled to commemorate this day - the
memories it awakens bring so much pain, anger and frustration. It is not
something I really want to remember. It is also something I can never
forget. That day forever altered the course of Eric's life - and the
lives of all his loved ones.
But I also know that it is our responsibility to remember. To remember
why Eric was arrested in the first place - not because anything burned
down or was damaged, but because he dared to think he could change things.
And that he didn't have to wait for permission from those who would never
give it. Eric was arrested - and sentenced to an inordinate amount of
time - because of his politics

We also must remember what it really means to show solidarity - with Eric
and all of our other comrades behind bars. We must remember that they are
still here. They are all still a part of our movements and we need to act
- every day - to include them. And, most importantly, we must carry on
the struggles for which they have given so much.

And we need to remember that sometimes things do change overnight.
Sometimes our loved ones are ripped from us. There is no way to really
prepare for such a heartwrenching experience, but what we can do is
remember to use the time we have now to be good to each other. Love
fearlessly. Never take for granted the time we share with each other. It
is a precious gift.

Recently, Eric and I had something returned to us that was taken 6 years
ago. I have no one to thank. It should never have been taken in the
first place. But I cannot tell you how overjoyed I was at its return. On
November 21st, during our visit at Terminal Island, Eric reached across
the "coffee table" sitting between us and grabbed my hands. Eric and I
had not been allowed to sit and hold hands in almost 6 years. Human touch
is such an integral part of leading a healthy, happy life. Not being able
to touch the people you love is tortuous. It is cruel and inhumane.
(Imagine watching a loved one cry and not being able to wipe away their
tears, or hold their hand...) Touch deepens our connections with each
other - it moves beyond language into a realm that words cannot contain or
explain. Of course, the powers that be know all of this, which is
probably why it was denied us for so long. We are acutely aware that it
could be taken away again at any moment. But for now we are reveling in
every second of it.

And so I remind myself of this, too - don't ever take these things for
granted.

Eric and I both would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all of you.
It is abundantly clear that so many people have not forgotten. Eric
continues to get mail from people all across the globe - please keep it
coming! He loves hearing from you. You are his connection to the outside
world - to the movements and places and ideas he cares about. Keeping
those connections is incredibly important to him.

And to all of you who have donated to Eric's support fund - you have no
idea how grateful we are. These donations not only help Eric with things
like stamps, food and personal items from commissary and time on the
telephone - they also help fund visits for him and his loved ones. These
visits are key to keeping everyone sane. It would be impossible for us to
visit as often as we do without your help.

Eric and I feel your support on a daily basis. "Thank you" could never be
enough...

Eric is 6 years into an almost 20 year sentence. Sometimes that thought
is almost overwhelming. But then I remember. I remember Eric and who he
is and how he has held onto that throughout this whole ordeal. I remember
all of you and how much love and support we have felt coming from all
directions. And I remember that we can do this.

With so much love,
jenny (eric's partner)



PS
Please remember our other friends, too! Marie Mason is turning 50 this
month. Visit her website: www.supportmariemason.org for more details on
how to send her a birthday card or a note of support.