Supporters of Leonard Peltier are urged to attend a clemency gathering at St. Leo Church in Tacoma at noon on Sat., Dec. 8, and add their voices to those of others seeking to pressure President Obama to grant clemency, long overdue, to Leonard Peltier, an AIM activist wrongfully extradited from Canada in 1976 and unjustly convicted at a federal trial in 1977 in Fargo, ND. -- Peltier, now 68, has been in prison for more than 35 years. -- This event is sponsored by the Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC) and co-sponsored by People for Peace, Justice, and Healing. -- More information below. ...1.
WHAT: Leonard Peltier clemency gathering
WHO: Ramona Bennett, Deeahop Conway, MC David Duenas, Steve Hapy, Matilaja, and Arthur J. Miller will speak
WHEN: Saturday, December 8, 2012 -- 12:00 noon-3:00 p.m.
WHERE: St. Leo Church, S. 13th & Yakima, Tacoma, WA
This event is sponsored by the Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC) and co-sponsored by People for Peace, Justice, and Healing.
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[From the Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC)]
CLEMENCY FOR LEONARD PELTIER!
On a variety of social justice issues, President Obama keeps saying, "Make me do it." Join us on December 8 to learn more so that all of us, together, can put pressure on the president and get Leonard Peltier out of prison.
The Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee has been advised that now, between the November 2012 election and President Obama's second inauguration on Jan. 20, 2013, is the best time to push for clemency. The committee has been told that it's now or never, so the push is on...
We ask all Leonard Peltier supporters to join us at this event.
We also ask supporters to make phone calls to the White House (White House Comments Lines -- 202-456-1111 and 202-456-1112) and/or send e-mails to the White House ( http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact ) in support of clemency.
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Speakers at the clemency gathering on Dec. 8 will include:
--Ramona Bennett, Puyallup Tribal Elder and lifelong friend of Leonard Peltier
--Deeahop Conway, Puyallup Tribal Member, Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC)
--MC David Duenas, Puyallup Tribal Member -- Opening and Coastal Hand Drum
--Steve Hapy, Long-time Leonard Peltier and Native struggles activist, Co-Coordinator of the Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC)
--Matilaja, Yu'Pik Eskimo from Mountain Village, Alaska, and member of N.W. AIM since 1973; friend of Leonard Peltier for 38 years and member of the Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC)
--Arthur J. Miller, Northwest Regional Organizer of the Tacoma Chapter of the Leonard Peltier Defense/Offense Committee (LPDOC)
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Who is Leonard Peltier, and why is he still in prison?
Leonard Peltier has been in U.S. federal prisons since 1977 due to a conviction relating to the murders of two FBI agents on the Pine Ridge Reservation in 1975. It was never proved that he was the murderer, but the jury nonetheless found him guilty. Amnesty International states that his trial was "unfair," citing concerns with the proceedings, which were based on allegations and inconsistencies regarding the FBI and prosecution's handling of the case.
In an August 2009 press release Amnesty International said: "Amnesty International today regretted the U.S. Parole Commission’s decision not to grant Leonard Peltier parole despite concerns about the fairness of his 1977 conviction for murder. . . "[T]he organization remains concerned about the fairness of the process leading to his conviction, including questions about evidence linking him to the point-blank shootings and coercion of an alleged eye-witness. . . . 'The interest of justice would be best served by granting Leonard Peltier parole,' said Angela Wright, U.S. Researcher at Amnesty International. 'Given the concerns around his conviction, the fact that appeals before the courts have long been exhausted and that he has spent more than 32 years in prison, we urge the Parole Commission to reconsider its decision.'"
Peltier's 1977 conviction sparked great controversy and has drawn criticism from around the world. Many appeals have been filed on his behalf. He has received support from groups and individuals including the European Parliament, the Belgian Federal Parliament, the Italian Parliament, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation, the Kennedy Memorial Center for Human Rights, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Nelson Mandela, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Tenzin Gyatso (the 14th Dalai Lama), and the Rev. Jesse Jackson.
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Two online videos of interest:
(1) Why Is Peltier Still in Prison? (10 minutes)
(2) The 1992 documentary narrated by Robert Redford, "Incident at Oglala: The Leonard Peltier Story," can be viewed online.
Facebook event page: Leonard Peltier Clemency Gathering (please invite your friends).