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Power Haus Creative’s Black August Month Begins With Support For Activist Jamil Al-Amin

Black August Month has now officially kicked off.

The event is a widespread call to action that encompasses fasting, raising awareness, and offering resources for political prisoners. It is a collaborative effort between Power Haus Creative and community partners Mahmoud Abdul Rauf, Students for Imam Jamil, Black Art in America, and Black Power Media.

The monthlong initiative was founded in California during the 1970s following a prison uprising and the deaths of brothers Johnathan and George Jackson. This year, it is being used to spread awareness and advocate for a new trial for civil rights activist Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin.

Formerly H. Rap Brown, Al-Amin has been incarcerated since 2002. Still, his contributions to the Black liberation movement remain intact. Some consider Al-Amin an enigma. He is the face of an Anti-Riot Act. He was a part of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. And now he sits in Supermax prison, convicted of murder. However, his son Kairi Al-Amin, Power Haus Creative, and its partners continue to fight for justice after over two decades, alleging cruel and unusual punishment and wrongful conviction. 

“No tangible noise was ever made and as such, my father’s conviction and subsequent exile, a vendetta realized, has gone unchecked,” wrote Kairi Al-Amin in a 2020 petition calling for a new trial.

“The cruel and unusual punishment, the confession of another man, the medical neglect in hopes that he dies, the gag order, the federal holding of a state prisoner away from his attorneys and family, we’ve done nothing about anything and because of our lack of action, much like the man himself, the truth about this case and his legacy have been erased from public view.”

The petition has garnered over 75,000 signatures in three years, but it is still a long way from its goal of 150,000. Despite this, Al-Amin’s advocates remain adamant about their mission, hoping to secure a retrial.

Summayah Ali, founder, and CEO of Power Haus Creative spoke about Al-Amin’s circumstances. “All of our political prisoners need to be released. In the case of Dr. Mutulu Shakur, he was imprisoned for nearly 37 years only to transition eight months after release. We don’t want that for Imam Jamil or anyone that was selfless enough to pave the way for some of the very privileges we benefit from today,” she told BLACK ENTERPRISE.

“They fought for us and deserve far better treatment than this,” she continued.

“My children are in their early 20s and I remind them to sit with the elders as often as possible. As a Muslim woman who’s Black, a  mother, Black Arts Organizer, and an activist I believe we have a responsibility to fight the good fight for those who tilled the soil for us. Imam Jamil is not just a champion for the community but also for the arts. He has said how much the arts played a significant role in the civil rights movement.  We are using the Art of Activism to fight back.”

In line with this mission, participating partners will also be “Feeding the Community,” literally and figuratively, throughout August. Through virtual sessions, scholars and activists will share different information and resources. 

Food drive donations will be accepted throughout the month at the Black Art in America Gallery at 1802 Connaly Dr. in East Point, Georgia. Later this month, on Aug. 28, human rights activist and former NBA player Mahmoud Abdul Rauf will speak at the gallery on an “Art of Activism” panel. For more scheduled events and information, visit @powerhauscreative on Instagram. To request a transfer for Imam Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin, visit wwww.freeimamjamil.com to fill out a three-minute form. 

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