Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Write a letter to Mr. King and share thoughts with him on his presentation this morning and afternoon. Make sure you begin with a salutation and close properly.
23 October 2009
I liked Robert King speech, some of the people in class had neat questions to ask him. I thought it was pretty interesting.
Mr. King,s Story
English 201A MW 1-2:50p
24 October, 2009
Dear Mr. King
First, I would like to thank you for taking the time to visit our afternoon English class. I really enjoyed your presentation. But, very surprised by the unfair circumstances. The autobiography of your life has touched me drastically.
I was so angered by your story, I feel that no one should have to endure the things that you did as an innocent man. The treatment was cruel and inhumane. But, I applaud you for your strength and courage. Mr. King you are a blessing to many.
I would like to encourage you , your work is not in vain. So many men in the prison systems are mistreated, wrongfully convicted, and people need to know what is going on. Mr. King you are the light for the young. There is so much power in your story and in you. Ironically, I think others saw that to, maybe that's a reason they tried to infuriate you for 29 years.
In closing, I wish you the best of luck in your reborn life of 8years. I hope this journey opens chapters for a new book of good things. I will be purchasing some of your great candy and books as gifts. So that other lives will be touched by your story, as I was touched by you.
Thank you Sincerely,
Posted by Rhonda Washington at 6:12 AM
Dear Robert King,
Thanks for coming to our class and sharing your life expierinces with us. You answerd all the questions well with great detail i still cant bealive how you managed to survive 23 years in solitary confinment. You have to have a strong mind and spirit. I really agree with you and your views about prison being a real form of slavery in this country, and black people are ther ones suffering most from this form of slavery. We make up more than 50 percent of the prison population and something has to change, either us as a people, the prison system, or some laws in this country. Are class studies hip hop and rap mostly tupac but while i was listing to you talk i thought about this song from plies called 100 years which really adresses what you were talking about.
English 201A 8-8:50am
25 October 2009
Dear Mr. King,
Thank you for taking the time to share a little of your story with our class. You were wrongfully accused of murder. I wouldn't know exactly how to react if I were in your shoes. You shared that during your time in prison you kept your head up and never let the situation weakened you. I thought that was really strong of you to be able to do that. I admire you for the fact that even though you didn't complete high school, you continued reading. To me that is educating yourself. You and Tupac share a like quality. You mentioned that you left school because it became boring. Tupac did the same too. You are talented and even started making a candy, Pralines and Cream. That is fantastic. I'm glad to have seen and hear you speak. Thank you again for your time and also for the donation of your book to The College of Alameda.
Mai Bee Lor
October 21, 2009
From The Bottom of the Hemp
Greetings to Mr. Robert Hillary King visiting from Austin Texas, he is the author of From the Bottom of the Heap. He talked about being incarcerated for thirty-five years, in which he spent twenty-nine years in solitary confinement.
He stated…”I chose not to become part of the system, and withdrew myself from the oppressor.”
When asked about spending twenty-nine years in solitary confinement, a chill ran through this body. Imagine a small six by nine-cell twenty-four hour’s a day.
He states,” I was in prison, but prison was never in me.” A defining moment, had never heard that before, especially from some one who spent so many years in solitary confinement. It just shows what anyone can accomplish what they set out to do, with faith.
He was determined to make it out alive and help young males that are incarcerated unjustly. Ninety-five percent of all inmates in Angola will die, from serving life sentences repeatedly. His plans are to keep a mission going, fighting for freedom and justice for all.
Sugarcane was the major crop in Louisiana. He also makes candy from sugarcane; it is his grandmothers’ recipe and it is yummy. It was grand to meet Mr. Hillary King, and wish him all the best in his newfound freedom.
Thank you Professor Sabir for exposing the class to information that will help us grow and learn about the world events and the interesting people in it.
English 201A 8-850
Mr. King is certainly a person that I would love to sit down and talk to one-on-one, because its interesting listening to a person who’s wise and who also been through tough times in life. People like him influence me to do better and to always treat and take my education real serious. He mentions the books he read in prison, and how he always felt that he was innocent, even though the system labeled him as guilty. That inspires me to stay strong in life, despite the downfalls. I can go on about the things he talked about. He mentions reading the Bible and getting to know more about the Bible, which is smart because not many people want to do that. I just want to thank him for taking his time off and sitting down and talking to us and sharing his experience with us.
English 201B 1-2:50
Dear Mr. King
I want to first start by saying thank you for sharing your story with my English class. I enjoyed hearing your story. I was also sad to hear of all the trials and tribulations you had to endure.
I was very saddened to hear of the prison conditions and of how many of our African American men have to endure such conditions. I have watched many documentaries on prison life but none have ever painted a picture of what you spoke of today. This saddens me so much that I feel the need to educate every African American male that I come in contact with on how not to ever have to endure these conditions.
In closing I would just like to say thank you again for sharing your story. I enjoy hearing and learning about my African American brothers and sisters and the things they have learned along the way. I to one day will be able to share the things that I have learned along my journey.
Thank you sincerely
26 Oct 2009
Dear Mr. King,
It was a great pleasure getting to meet you and thank you for taking your to come in to our English class and share your story with us. It was interesting to hear about how you got mistreated back in the days because I did not know that it was that bad and I felt that it was unfair about the way that you was treated and put in prison for doing something that you did not do murder.
Even though when you was in Prison you still kept your head up high and made a change for yourself. I really like how you had the strength to want to read all type of books and make a change because being in a place that you was not even suppose to be and still want to change and make a difference in your life and others is a wonderful thing. I really like your story. Once a agian Thank you for visiting and sharing your story.
22 October 2009
Dear Mr. King,
I think your life story is a significant part of black people history, as well as the struggle for true liberation in America. The Black Panther party played an important role in the black community in the 1970’s. The group was known for defending, feeding and caring for its people in a way that the US government refused to do at the time (predominantly the 1970’s).
“From The Bottom of the Heap” written by Robert Hillary King is proof enough that no mater what you go through you can always rise above your environment. Being incarcerated for nearly three decades after joining the Black Panther Party and becoming involved in his community is the story of Mr. King. Mr. King took some of the worse of what the American prison system had to offer, and then some. Your life’s story includes being in an overcrowded prison, escaping from bondage, and still having the will power to fight the good fight for his people. When some would have given up or surrendered to the pull of negativity, surrendered to the feeling of hopelessness, you found more then enough reasons to continue to fight.
Even though I don’t know much about activist and the Black Panther movement, I’m proud to say that I know enough to judge you as a powerful man that stood up for what you believed was right. Hoping that everything goes well in the future and present, I leave you with this last word: Admiration.
Dear Dr. King,
Thank you for coming in and talking a little bit about how your life was with becoming a Black Panther and being accuse of something you have not done. Even though I didn’t come prepare to ask you some question, but my classmate had some good questions that had given me more information about your struggle life.
Dr. King, all you wanted was a respect and for them to treat you and your comrades the right way of life, but they didn’t. They were nasty and mean, but you never gave up and keep fighting for your rights. I like that kind of strength and from hearing your story; it had encourage me to never give up too. It must be really hard to tell your story of how it was like being in a prison and the struggles that you were going through. Thank you once again for taking your time to talk to us.
The speech Mr. Robert King made was one that realy touched my heart. I always wanted to here from a male point of view what made them keep the fate and gave them the will to go on. Mr. King covered every part of the body I every wonder,not olny was his pain felt but I was able to place my self there and sence what he went through. I would like to thank you Proessor Sabir.
26 October 2009
First, I would like to thank you for coming to my class and taking the time to tell us about your life experience. I was very touched when you started talking about your life in prison. I was thinking the whole time of how are now standing in my class and survived all what you have been through. I cant tell you how survived all these years in solitary confinment and still strong and health looking man. I was very happy to know more about you and your life. It was my first time in my whole life that i have met someone in person who had survived and has been through soo much in their lives and still surviving.
After class, I was thinking how you did it. I found that you are a special strong man who had a reason to live til the last day of his life. I was trying to put my life into yours and thought for a second and said to myself I would have committed a suicide long time ago. I was very happy that you came to my class. Hope for you the best long peaceful life, and good luck in whatever you do.
26 October 2009
Dear Mr. King
I would like to thank you for coming to my English class on Wednesday. I liked your speech and I thought it was pretty interesting. And it was also an honor to meet you.
26 Oct. 2009
Dear Mr. king,
I really liked hearing you talk about your life. It showed me how much reading is necessary in order to be able to understand things in life. Personally I like to read and learn about different things. I had never thought about reading different religious books like the ones that you told us you read. The only religious book that I have read is the bible. Some of the books that you mentioned seem like they would be good to read. I may try and read some of them. I am really thinking about reading your book.
You show us that although you didn’t finish school, just like Tupac, you taught yourself a lot through reading books. That is something that may encourage other youths to read as much as they can, so that they can educate themselves. Books can teach people a lot. It would have been nice to know a few of the things that was learned by yourself, through your reading. I think that it would have been a good idea if they would have let anyone that wished attend your presentation.
I never knew that you were held in prison although you did not commit a crime. The person that was holding the weapon should have been the one that was charged. That was very unfair and I don’t think that should have been done to you. They should have let you go and nothing should have happened to you when you escaped. You have come a long way after all you have been through. I would like to learn more about what you went through. I would like to know how life in prison was for you. I know that it must have been hard.
I thought that it would have been better if we were able to hear you talk rather than have a video play. The video did let us hear what you had to say when you were younger, which was a good thing. It was more interesting to hear you personally talk than to have a video. The video could have been something that we watched if you weren’t able to come.
I was never really taught in school about the Black Panthers. I wish that we would have had more time so that we could know exactly in what way did you participate with the Black Panthers. I think that learning about the Black Panthers is very important for the fact that many of us have all that we have today because of everything the Black Panthers fought for. Reading the book Holler If You Hear me was the only way that I was able to hear a little about the Black Panthers.
It would be nice if you were able to talk to the class again and would have more time.
October 28, 2009
Dear Mr. King,
My name is Margaret Coleman and I am majoring in Business Administration. I was very taken by the life experiences that you shared with the class, from the learning of your real mother, to your life of incarceration.
As I watched you speak I kept thinking to myself, “this is not the kind of man that belongs behind bars.” I was captured by your aura, as the questions were asked of you about your term or terms served, you were willing to recount and share, that overwhelmed me. To me, that meant that you were willing to revisit that misfortunate time of your life for the sake of teaching.
One of the students made a comment that not even after your 20+ years in Angola do you appear bitter, then they asked were you bitter. I liked your answer. Instead of making the normal comment “you had to be there” you tried to relive and un-live that part of your life so that you could give a more adequate answer. You said and I quote “You can not lay down with sewage and not come up stinking, it’s the way you come up stinking that matters.” I took from that statement that you were able to make the negative treatment you endured, the inhumane lodging you were subjected to and the horrible intentions to mentally strip you down to nothing, all work for you in the positive. You didn’t grow bitter and become a threat to society, you became motivated to fight for your rights and the rights of others. Your definition of bitterness: motivation.
I could go on writing to you as I could go on hearing you speak. I will be purchasing “From the Bottom of The Heap” and will insist that my 22 year old son familiarize himself with the book also.
Thanks for sharing
22 October 2009
As a young African American male, an African American studies major, and an inspiring activist, I think your life story is a significant part of our (black people) history, as well as our struggle for true liberation in America. The Black Panther party played an important role in the black community in the 1970’s. The group was known for defending, feeding and caring for its people in a way that the US government refused to do at the time (predominantly the 1970’s).
“From The Bottom of the Heap” written by Robert Hillary King is proof enough that no mater what you go through you can always rise above your environment. Being incarcerated for nearly three decades after joining the Black Panther Party and becoming involved in his community is the story of Mr. King. Mr. King took some of the worse of what the American prison system had to offer, and then some. His life’s story includes being in an overcrowded prison, escaping from bondage, and still having the will power to fight the good fight for his people. When some would have given up or surrendered to the pull of negativity, surrendered to the feeling of hopelessness, Mr. King found more then enough reasons to continue to fight.
Inside the same walls that caused the breaking of many men, when suicide and murder surrounded the lives of people in Angola, Mr. King persuaded his passion of fighting injustice and the shackles found on black people, and any person touched by injustice anywhere.
The story of such a beautiful brother “should be told on a mountain top”. The struggle, heartache, determination, and will power are a perfect example of the strength that lies in every person touched by this counties prison system. His power to weather one of the “toughest” prisons in America and still remain as an inspiring black figure is a beautiful story and can act as an example to all of us.
I thank you for giving us your time, and I feel allowing us to see your suffering is an honor.