Excerpt from a letter written by Afeni Shakur to her family while she was incarcerated with the Panther 21 awaiting trial and pregnant with a baby that would later be named Tupac Shakur.


“I’ve discovered what I should have known a long time ago – that change has to begin with ourselves – whether there is a revolution today or tomorrow – we still must face the problem of purging ourselves of the larceny that we have all inherited. I hope we do not pass it on to you because you are our only hope…

I cannot get rid of my dream of peace and harmony. It is for that dream that most of us have fought – some bravely, some as cowards, some as heroes, and some as plain old crooks. Forgive us our mistakes because mostly they were mistakes which were made out of blind ignorance (sometimes arrogance). Judge us with empathy for we were (are) idealists and sometimes we’re young and foolish.

I do not regret any of it – for it taught me to be something that some people will never learn – for the first time in my life I feel like a woman – beaten, battered and scarred maybe, but isn’t that what wisdom is truly made of…”