SLA Demands "Gesture of Good Faith"

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Longtime San Franciscan Darrell Rogers describes how his experience in social movements and as a worker at the commissary at the Presidio thrust him into a key role in the food distribution effort that became known as "PIN" or People In Need, a result of the SLA ransom demands made on the Hearst family.

Video: Shaping San Francisco



We have heard it said that Mr. Hearst wants to save his daughter; we want to save all the children and people. In an effort to answer some of the basic needs of the people, we are asking for a symbolic gesture of good faith from this representative of the corporate state. Each person with one of the following cards is to be given $70 worth of meats, vegetables, and dairy products: all people with welfare cards, Social Security pension cards, food stamp cards, disabled veteran cards, medical cards, parole or probation papers, and jail or bail release slip. So that all those with such cards have time, and will not be forced to stand waiting in long lines, the time for the distribution of this food must extend over a four-week period, beginning February 19th, on each Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday for four successive weeks. Each person with one of the listed cards can go to publicized stores and pick up their food.

1. The stores where people can go are to be clearly designated and publicized in each of the communities listed below, and they are to be within easy access to the people of those communities. There must be at least 5 stores as distribution points within each community; these distribution points should be major stores within the community. We suggest such stores as Safeway and Mayfair.

2. The meat, vegetables, and dairy products must be of top quality and in ample supply during all store hours.

3. To The People: If you are not receiving your food, all you have to do is voice your discontent in the streets, at bus stops, movie theaters, etc., and we will hear about it. Also anyone facing any interference from the police state in the way of harassment should voice their discontent. The people's army calls upon community groups such as Nirobi College in East Palo Alto, Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco, and the Black Teachers Caucus, the National Welfare Rights Organization, United Farm Workers, AIM, Third World Women's Alliance, United Prisoner's Union, as well as representatives from people's news services such as Getting Together, Kalayan, Triple Jeopardy[?], Black Panther Party, the Anvil, and others to act as observers and coordinators to see to it that the aged and disabled receive their food and ways to transport it and shop for it, and to see to it that no police-state agents, in or out of uniform, are allowed to be in the areas of food distribution or photograph or harass the people.

4. Stores in each of the following cities or communities are to serve as distribution points:

San Francisco (Mission District, Chinatown, Hunters Point, the Fillmore)

Oakland (East and West)


East Palo Alto


Santa Rosa

Los Angeles (Watts, Compton, East Los Angeles)


1. The document showing the emblem and meaning of the seven-headed cobra that is in the possession of police state authorities shall be placed in newspapers and other forms of the media in its exact form, not omitting any area.

2. The document that is enclosed regarding the declaration of war and the goals of the S.L.A. shall also be placed in its total form in newspapers and other forms of the media.

3. A copy of all these stated documents, along with a full copy of the tape enclosed recorded by myself and Pat Hearst is to be distributed to the media for publication.

4. The news media is warned that all attempts to mislead the public concerning the intentions of the S.L.A., or to confuse the public by withholding or omitting sections of the tape or S.L.A. documents, jeopardizes the prisoner.

If this gesture of good faith is not met then we will assume that there is no basis for negotiations, and we will no longer take and maintain in good health and spirits prisoners of war.


--Berkeley Barb, Feb. 15, 1974

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