The Richmond Anarchist Black Cross is continuing with radical prison oriented movie screenings this month, on the second and fourth Thursdays of the Month. March 12th the movie will be Prison Town USA and March 26th the movie will be Up the Ridge. These movie screenings will be at the William Byrd Community House on Thursdays, starting at 7 with an opportunity for folks to learn about how to write letters to political prisoners before the film starts. The films will begin at 7:30 so try to get there by then.
There will be snacks as available and free literature, as well as supplies and addresses for writing prisoners. Bring your questions and thoughts about the prison system. Tell your friends!
The William Byrd Community House is located at 224 South Cherry Street in Oregon Hill. The movie screenings happen in the library.
Up The Ridge Movie Screening and Prisoner Letter Writing
Richmond Anarchist Black Cross Movie Series
Richmond Anarchist Black Cross
Thursday, March 26, 2009
7:00pm – 10:00pm
William Byrd Community Center
Join the Richmond Anarchist Black Cross and community members to write letters to prisoners and watch the film Up the Ridge at the William Byrd Community House on Thursday March 26th.
Letter Writing at 7
Movie at 7:30
Up The Ridge is about Wallen’s Ridge Prison in Virginia.
The Richmond Anarchist Black Cross is an autonomous Collective committed to prison abolition and prisoner support. As anarchists we are oppossed to all systems of oppression and repression and have concluded that prisons serve no positive function in society. We actively seek to abolish the institutionalized slavery of the Prison Industrial Complex. We are dedicated to working in solidarity with prisoners and drawing connections between a multitude of struggles.
Up The Ridge
When I visited Wallens Ridge in the spring of 1999, it was new and as yet unoccupied. It felt like a house on moving day, all echoes and loneliness. What I found there was the perfectly evolved American prison. It was both lavishly expensive and needlessly remote, built not because it was needed but because it was wanted by politicians who thought it would bring them votes.
–Joseph T. Hallinan Going Up the River: Travels in a Prison Nation, 2001
The use of American correction executives with abuse accusations in their past to oversee American-run prisons in Iraq is prompting concerns in Congress. Mr. Armstrong, assistant director of operations in American prisons in Iraq…resigned last year after Connecticut settled lawsuits…with the families of two Connecticut inmates who died after being sent…to Wallens Ridge, a super-maximum security prison in Virginia.
–New York Times, May 21, 2004
Up the Ridge is a one-hour television documentary produced by Nick Szuberla and Amelia Kirby. In 1999 Szuberla and Kirby were volunteer DJ’s for the Appalachian region’s only hip-hop radio program in Whitesburg, KY when they received hundreds of letters from inmates transferred into nearby Wallens Ridge, the region’s newest prison built to prop up the shrinking coal economy. The letters described human rights violations and racial tension between staff and inmates. Filming began that year and, though the lens of Wallens Ridge State Prison, the program offers viewers an in-depth look at the United States prison industry and the social impact of moving hundreds of thousands of inner-city minority offenders to distant rural outposts. The film explores competing political agendas that align government policy with human rights violations, and political expediencies that bring communities into racial and cultural conflict with tragic consequences. Connections exist, in both practice and ideology, between human rights violations in Abu Ghraib and physical and sexual abuse recorded in American prisons.