More than 100 protesters wound their way up to the entrance at San Quentin State Prison in support of a more than two-week nationwide prison strike on Saturday.
"That never, ever, ever would have happened," said civil rights lawyer Stephen Bingham of some passing cars honking their horns at the protestors. He said that kind of support wouldn't have been seen in the '70s.
In 1971 Bingham fled the country after being accused of helping pass a gun to a prominent Black Panther known as George Jackson, a man who was held for much of a decade in solitary confinement at San Quentin for stealing little more than $70 worth of gas.
Bingham says Jackson and his subsequent death at the prison, alongside three guards and two inmates, inspired people to pay attention to what was happening inside jails for the first time.
Forty-seven years later, inmates across the country launched this week's strike on Tuesday, August 21, the anniversary of Jackson's death.