Originally posted to It’s Going Down
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In this special episode of the IGDCAST we bring you an interview with former political prisoner Luke O’Donovan, formerly based in Atlanta. In 2013, Luke was sentenced to two years in prison for defending himself against a group of homophobic attackers at a party. On top of having to do the time, Luke who was just released, is also banished from returning to Atlanta, GA for several years. In the time that he was imprisoned, Luke’s case drew far-reaching support and along side the case of CeCe McDonald placed a spot light on incidents of queer and trans self-defense that lead to those who fought back in turn being criminalized themselves.
In this interview with Luke, we talk briefly about his case, as well as how during his sentencing the judge used his sexuality and political ideas against him. We then discuss Luke’s time spent in prison, and how Luke navigated racial politics, the guards, his revolutionary ideals among other inmates, and daily life in prison. We then switch gears and discuss the unfolding prison strike, and Luke ideas surrounding building infrastructure, power, breaking out of a “scene,” and becoming a material force.
We then present a special recorded interview conducted by a member of the Incarcerated Workers Organizing Committee (IWOC), who talks with two inmates currently on hunger strike inside inside Merced County Jail. Prisoners discuss the unfolding strike, conditions at the jail, brutal guards, and also ask supporters to call at: (209) 385-7419 to ask that their demands be met. For more background on the ongoing hunger-strike in Merced, CA, check out our earlier podcast here.