Recap from Chicago “Standing Our Ground” Events…

Well, it’s been an eventful few days. Unfortunately, this morning we learned that Marissa was denied a stand your ground hearing. This means that she will be retried in December. While this is not a surprise, it is still disappointing.

This news came on the heels of a couple of events co-sponsored by CAFMA to raise awareness about Marissa’s case while also locating it within a historical context.

On Friday, over 200 people packed Art In These Times to get their first look at the No Selves to Defend exhibition.

photo by Daniel Tucker

photo by Daniel Tucker

‘No Selves to Defend’ features the stories of women of color who have been criminalized for self-defense. The exhibition examines the contested meanings and historical and contemporary understandings of self-defense. It seeks to locate Marissa Alexander’s story within a broader historical context and legacy. The exhibition also addresses the campaigns and mobilizations that emerged to resist their criminalization and demand their freedom. Finally, it considers how we can support current survivors of violence who have been criminalized for self-defense.

The exhibition will run until September 20 so there is plenty of time for others to visit Monday through Fridays from 10 to 4:30 pm. If you are interested in a tour or in visiting the exhibition on a Saturday, contact Mariame at projectnia@hotmail.com.

Below are some photos of the exhibition:

photo of NSTD programs by Rachel Caidor

photo of NSTD programs by Rachel Caidor

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7-18-14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7-18-14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7-18-14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7-18-14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

In addition, CAFMA member and photographer Sarah Jane Rhee ran a photo booth at the event. All of the photos can e found here. Below is one of our favorite photos of friend of CAFMA, Antonia, who designed the “Prison Is Not Feminist” sign.

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

photo by Sarah Jane Rhee (7/18/14)

We received over $700 in donations at the opening event for Marissa’s legal defense and sold about $200 in merchandise from the #FreeMarissa store. Since December 2013, CAFMA has donated nearly $11,000 to Marissa’s legal defense fund!! We are so grateful to everyone who has contributed so far.

Screen Shot 2014-07-20 at 9.50.07 AM

On Saturday, we organized a screening of the terrific documentary Crime After Crime followed by a panel discussion. Everyone in attendance was infuriated and moved by the film. The discussion and questions reflected this.

photo by Ayanna Banks Harris (7/19/14)

photo by Ayanna Banks Harris (7/19/14)

CAFMA is grateful to all of our members and partners who made these events such successes. We still have one last event as part of this month’s “Standing Our Ground” campaign. We hope that you will join us for a community gathering and rally in solidarity with Marissa this Saturday July 26th at 2 p.m. Details are here.

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