and played jazz extra loud

Posted: December 28th, 2015 | No Comments »
Elizabeth Fink with Attica clients in 1991. Credit Photograph by Larry Fink

Elizabeth Fink with Attica clients in 1991. Credit Photograph by Larry Fink. Courtesy of the NY Times.

going through “the lives they lived” — just learning about elizabeth fink and the attica uprising and her work with the survivors (bolding my own):

Afterward, Big Black [Attica Brothers Legal Defense executive director Frank Smith] was beaten and tortured for six hours. He was forced to lie naked on a table while vengeful law-enforcement officers insulted him with racial slurs, hit his genitals and burned him with cigarettes. They put a football beneath his chin and told him that if he let it drop, he would be killed. He recalled that day in the 2001 documentary ‘‘Ghosts of Attica,’’ saying that for years he wept whenever he tried to talk about it — that what he felt most was ‘‘disappointment in the world, disappointment in people.’’

Scores of other inmates experienced similar torment. Men were stripped, beaten, sodomized, forced to crawl over glass. Hearing their stories, Elizabeth Fink began to understand something about disappointment in the world. It couldn’t be reversed, but possibly it could be countered. Ditching her two-week plan, she ultimately became lead counsel for a $2.8 billion civil suit filed in 1974 against the State of New York on behalf of more than 1,200 victims of Attica. She then worked on the case for the next 26 years.

but one bright amazing thing:

At her [Fink’s] apartment in Brooklyn, where she lived alone with her dog, she read mystery novels, smoked pot and played jazz extra loud.



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