Imagine living, eating, sleeping, relieving oneself, day-dreaming, weeping—but mostly waiting, in a room about the size of your bathroom. Now imagine doing all those things—but mostly waiting, for the rest of your life. Imagine waiting—waiting—to die.
—MUMIA ABU-JAMAL 1
IN 1997, DEMOCRACY NOW! made a decision that resulted in the program getting thrown off of twelve radio stations in one fell swoop. It knocked us completely off the air in the entire state of Pennsylvania.
Our crime was airing the commentaries of a death row prisoner named Mumia Abu-Jamal.
A former journalist and activist in Philadelphia, Abu-Jamal has been on death row in Pennsylvania since being convicted of the 1981 murder of a police officer. Abu-Jamal maintains he is innocent of the charges, and an international solidarity movement has grown up around his case. Among those supporting his cause are Nelson Mandela and the European Parliament. Amnesty International says Abu-Jamal never received a fair trial.