People often forget that freedom and health are the two things we should cherish the most. For former prison convict Mutulu Shakur, however, the meaning, which lies between both words is surely as clear as day. In December 2022 Tupac Shakur’s stepfather was finally released from prison, having served 36 years out of a 60-year sentence for multiple charges – bank robbery, armed bank robbery, bank robbery murder and others. To make things worse, Mutulu developed a dangerous blood cancer over the last few years, meaning his time on earth might just be numbered.
“I am receiving excellent care in two categories — Western oncology and holistic natural therapies. I don’t take this freedom for granted.”
Freedom, however, can certainly help his cause. Upon being released the former Black Panther movement activist shared his joy of just being able to once again be part of the free community and be side by side with his family – 6 children and 3 grandchildren. Mopreme Shakur, one of his sons, noted that being back at home has made his health condition improve as well, as Mutulu has gained 10 pounds in just a few days.
“I’m so happy to be free,” Shakur, Tupac Shakur’s stepfather, told NBC News. “I fought hard every day that I was incarcerated. I have a lot to do, hoping that society gives me another swing at it. But my life is an example of what could happen. I am very hopeful.”
The battle for Shakur to be released wasn’t half easy, however. An activist group had been trying to advocate for his freedom for sometime, but the authorities sited that his previous crimes were far too socially dangerous for him to be freed. In May, 2022, doctors sited that Shakur has less than 6 months of life, admitting that his treatment was no longer affecting the illness. That still wasn’t enough for Mutulu to be set free. Finally, around October it was ajudged that Tupac’s stepfather was no longer in any sort of physical condition to commit any sort of crimes, making his stay in prison pointless.
It is still unclear how much time among the living Mutulu actually has, but he’s not wasting any of it. Mopreme Shakur explains that his father is spending as much time as possible with his relatives, catching up after all these years, whilst also going on a “food tour” around the USA, in order to try out new types of food, which he didn’t have access to over the last three and a half decades. Mutulu admits how proud he is of all of his children and grandchildren, who have managed to become great citizens, without being tainted by his own past.
Along with enjoying time with family, Shakur has spent the last few weeks on a “food tour,” trying different foods he didn’t have access to while in prison, his son said. “Everyone’s bringing him bean pies from every direction!” Mopreme said.
Many activists nowadays feel that Mutulu Shakur was merely being used as a political prisoner, in order to scare off other black revolutionists in the 80s and 90s. Shakur was found incarcerated on accusations of rackeeting, bank robbery, bank robbery murder and armed bank robbery. In 1981 he was allegedly the leader of a group that attacked a armed truck, killing two policemen and a guard in the process. Many, however, think that his work as part of the Black Panther movement was what made authorities describe him as especially dangerous.
Shakur’s story is quite inspirational, seeing as he’s 72 and struck by blood cancer, yet still managed to get his freedom back and spend his final days in the company of his most loved ones. Maybe a peaceful end to a rigorous persona.
“It’s been a great, great day, in 38 years of life, that I have had an opportunity to hug and nestle with my six children and three grandchildren,” he said. “I am so proud of them, that they have survived and are presently in good physical and, more importantly, mental strength in light of what my life has caused them. They’re very productive citizens that have not been tainted by the politics of my issues.”