The Jim Crow “justice” continues to unfold in Brother Mumia Abu-Jamal's case. Don't miss this powerful and poignant book!
From the outset, I became a doubting Thomas of Mumia’s guilt. I couldn't claim his innocence, just that the trial and conviction were a modern day lynching. Veronica Jones’ memoir totally validates my doubts.
It also makes me awestruck at the enormity of Philadelphia corruption in its courts and the police and the pandering of public officials such as Tom Ridge and Ed Rendell to mob mentality. Veronica Jones deserves a posthumous medal as a truth bringer.
This book is one of the most lucid, honest, and courageous book that I’ve ever read. In addition to being a captivating memoir, Veronica exposes powerful and necessary truths about the State’s obsession with unjustly incarcerating Mumia Abu Jamal.
This memoir serves as yet another important and compelling piece of evidence that confirms what we already know: Mumia Abu-Jamal has been deliberately and unfairly incarcerated. Anyone interested in freedom and justice must read this book now!
—Marc Lamont Hill
I will never forget sitting in the courtroom when Veronica Jones vowed to be honest to her unborn grandchild, and was arrested off the witness stand for telling the truth. I couldn’t put down her memoir. I understood even more the police abuse that led her to lie at Mumia’s trial.
This book astounded me by its revelations of the Philly police relations with prostitutes and witnesses and particularly Officer Faulkner’s complicated, extended sexual involvement with Veronica Jones, a vulnerable young mother. Her courage is enhanced by this informative narrative. A shocking and revealing eye-opener!
When you read her words, I bet you'll want to hug her too.
For she was a remarkable woman, who fought many battles in her life, losing some, but fighting still. Let this work, blessed into being by her loving sister, Valerie, be her testament.
Like many Greens, I have long been active in the fight to free Mumia Abu-Jamal. I was one of "the Liberty Bell 7" defendants arrested for demanding freedom for Mumia and Leonard Peltier, and I was in the high-security courtroom behind a bullet-proof, sound-proof glass wall with scores of other protesters when Leonard Weinglass, Mumia's attorney (and my friend—rest in peace, Lenny) questioned Veronica Jones, who recanted her testimony that had helped lock away Mumia for, now, some 30 years for a crime he didn't commit.
I heard her tell the Court—piped behind the glass wall via a creaky sound system—how the police threatened to take her away from her young children if she didn't lie and testify that Mumia was the shooter.
And I saw her being arrested then and there, in the Court, on an old warrant a minute after she'd recanted, for allegedly bouncing a check! I hope she was able to hear as dozens of us in the spectators' gallery pounded on the glass, yelling at the top of our lungs, "let her go!"
This case—so full of Shakespearean twists and turns, but always with the frame-up of an innocent man (and great journalist) at its core—was and remains emblematic of the history of racism of this country. It is also something more. I can't quite put my finger on why, but the frame-ups of Mumia Abu-Jamal and Leonard Peltier more than other injustices continue to move me and so many others to the barricades.
And now, in yet another turn, comes this new and gut-wrenching book by Valerie Jones, Veronica's sister, with an introduction by Mumia himself and an afterword by attorney Rachel Wolkenstein. In one of the strangest personal juxtapositions, I read a pre-publication draft while camping at Yosemite a month ago, surrounded by the majesty of the mountains, the almost dried out rivers, the exquisite natural beauty of this country that requires our ceaseless vigilance to protect what little remains from the rapacious corporate predators and the system they control. And I couldn't put it down, not Valerie Jones' spare but loving account of this part of her life, her sister Veronica's harrowing and often courageous story, nor Rachel Wolkenstein's excellent synopsis of the evidence and the case for Mumia's innocence.
Maybe symbolically, at least for me, Mumia is like those mountains at Yosemite. Powerful, stately, against a system that tries to break him and tear them down; the system of fracking, mountaintop removal, and Mumia-removal, I don't know.
What I do know is that I am extremely grateful for Valerie Jones' honest book and Veronica Jones' honest and courageous story. It has such a different feel to it than all the other books—some of them very good! — that sift through and argue over the evidence. In telling their own stories from a very personal framework, the Jones sisters have done something unique within the Mumia canon. There are no trumpets blaring, no resounding slogans, only the slow and steady build up of rage and tears in this fast-reading book, leading one to stand before those mountains of Mumia and swear: "I will protect you. This is for our lives."