|International Memorial Events for Stanley 'Tookie' Williams|
|Written by Robert ID3166|
|Tuesday, 12 December 2006 01:58|
A year ago, on Dec. 13th 2005, the State of California used an inhumane lethal injection procedure to kill peacemaker and anti-gang activist Stanley ''Tookie Williams''. Tens of thousands of people throughout the world protested this execution made possible by California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger who denied clemency to Stanley ''Tookie Williams''. Nine months later, after an investigation, we learned the truth: the execution of Stanley Tookie Williams was botched, due to incompetence by California Department of Corrections personnel, causing him to die slowly and horrifically in excruciating pain, though he was paralyzed by the State so that he could not scream out.
On the evening of Dec. 12th 2006, the people of the State of California, will scream out in protest of that tortuous killing of Stanley ''Tookie'' Williams. They will use their voices to scream out for Stan about the injustices that he experienced, an innocent man not only executed by this State, but also tortured by prison staff. And, so far, the system has not allowed any one to be held accountable.
"Witness to an Execution" is being co-produced by Barbara Becnel, advocate, co-author and friend of Stanley ''Tookie'' Williams and Shirley Neal, President of Park Hill Entertainment. Becnel and Neal's historic performance will include a reenactment of the torture-murder of Williams. Becnel said of the reason behind putting on the event, "This is what the state of California is doing in the name of its people. We were there. We saw it. Now we want the public to see what we saw."
The event is meant to do more than just expose the injustice, it is also geared toward spurring the audience into action. According to Shirley Neal, the event will "show (the audience) that it's even worse than you think it is and ... once you see what's going on, you''ll want to act (against the death penalty)."
One of the performers will be musician Darby Tillis, the first person to be exonerated from Illinois death row since the reinstatement of the death penalty. Tillis explained his reason for coming to California to be a part of this event, "I was released from death row but I am not free from death row. As long as there is something working for abolition of the death penalty and for a fair and just system, I want to be a participant. I want to participate in exposing this sickness for what it is."
Only a limited number of tickets are available because of the size of the theater. The event will serve as a fundraiser for the STW Legacy Fund, so tickets are tax deductible. Theater tickets are $50.00 each, though discounts are available for groups. Call 510-235-9780 for tickets and be sure to visit the www.SaveTookie.org and www.Tookie.com web sites for further information about Stanley ''Tookie'' Williams.
What: Theatrical Event, "Witness to an Execution"
When: Dec. 12th 2006, 11:30 PM - 1:00 AM
Where: Black Repertory Theater of Berkeley, 3201 Adeline Street (Berkeley, California)
The second event will be in Toronto, Canada.
A "Peace in the Streets" ceremony for students at the Nelson Mandela Park School in downtown Toronto (Canada) will take place the morning of Dec. 13th 2006, marking the one year passing anniversary of Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Stanley ''Tookie'' Williams.
The ceremony, hosted by Canadian music personality Raoul Juneja (a.k.a. Deejay Ra), will be focusing on Tookie's books in the hopes of steering Canadian youth away from gang violence, which has significantly risen in Toronto over the past few years. A live musical component to the ceremony will feature hip-hop artist Imaan Faith, who will be performing educationally uplifting songs as interludes to Juneja's readings for the students about Tookie and world leader Nelson Mandela.
The "Peace in the Streets" ceremony also marks the five year anniversary of Toronto Park school being re-named Nelson Mandela Park, during a personal visit of Mandela's to the school in late 2001. A video montage paying tribute to Tookie and Mandela will conclude the ceremony, reflecting on connections between the peacemakers and the need for observation of their positive messages amongst multi-cultural youth.
In 2003 the city of Toronto also played backdrop to filming of the Redemption TV movie starring Jamie Foxx as Tookie, which featured Canadian hip-hop founder Wes ''Maestro'' Williams as Tookie’s peacemaker lieutenant Tony Bogard.
Williams, a JUNO award-winner (the equivalent of the Grammy in Canada) also recently created a music video tribute to Stanley ''Tookie'' Williams entitled "Criminal Mind", featuring two fellow Canadian JUNO award-winners, rapper Infinite and rock legend Gowan.
What: "Peace in the Streets" Tookie Tribute Ceremony
When: Dec. 13th 2006, 9:00 AM - 10:00 AM
Where: Nelson Mandela Park Public School (Toronto, Canada)