In late 2009, I was elected to the WBAI Local Station Board.  Unfortunately, the U.S. government had other ideas for my time and I was incarcerated for the next 4 years. (When first jailed in lower Manhattan, I tried to participate in major, non-urgent decisions by letter, but the board majority refused, so I resigned.) I survived my prison ordeal and am ready to run for the same important position on this policy-making board. I'm proud to do so with the WBAI Justice and Unity Campaign (www.justiceunity.org).

You may know that I was, for over 30 years, a People's Lawyer (so named by the late, great Professor Arthur Kinoy). I defended many social and political activists and causes. Now, after what was deemed my too-zealous representation of Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, I am disbarred and on probation. My health is not robust but I know how to pace myself and I believe I can be an agent of change at WBAI.

Change what? As board members, my Justice & Unity colleagues and I will:

1. Oppose a station sale or signal swap.

 

2. Search for and recommend a Program Director who can serve as a professional and ethical model for producers and is committed to programming encompassing issues such as gentrification, immigrants, prisoners, and international struggles resisting encroachment by capitalism and banksters, as well as programs by and for young people. (The current board majority continually resisted establishing a search committee.)

 

3. Mandate and monitor processes around programming, staffing, serious financial planning and responsible spending, including financial transparency.

 

4. Inform fundraising methods and premium-selection to reflect a progressive, grassroots approach, as spelled out in the sustainability plan assembled by Justice & Unity and colleagues (http://wbai.org/dldetail.php?doc=172 ). (Last year, Justice & Unity combined this plan with those of other board members, but the board majority refused to forward the compilation to the Pacifica National Board for action.)

All segments of the Movement run on news and information and find strength in the culture of revolution. During my long legal battle and campaign for compassionate release, WBAI was absolutely essential in getting the word out and countering efforts to demonize me.

I want to help restore WBAI to greatness, to that 24/7 place for breaking news, cultural enlightenment, and intelligent, thought-provoking politics!

We are fortunate to have WBAI and must build it up and pass it on. The Internet allows us to reach across the world, but we know that around the corner some can't afford $60 per month to be wired to the latest technologies but do have to access 99.5FM on ever-present radios.

We need a Board committed to the station’s success as a tool for change, so I urge that you vote for all the Justice & Unity candidates -- endorsed by Charles and Inez Barron, Bernard White, and many others -- in the following order:

1. Lynne Stewart

2. King Downing

3. John Brinkley

4. Ralph Poynter

5. Pauline Park

6. Dacio Quintana

7. Eugene Hamond

 

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