Jena 6: Injustice in the South! Black Teens sent to jail….Murder 1 charges!

If you don’t know who the Jena 6 are, you are not alone. The first I heard about the black high school teens being railroaded through the Louisiana criminal justice system was last week when I received an email urging me to wear black Thursday the 20th in their support.

The first Sean Hannity heard about it was last night when Reverend Al was trying to bring it up and Hannity assumed he was talking about Megan Williams, the young black woman who was tortured and sexually assaulted by those crazy hillbillies in West Virginia. Cryptkeeper Colmes tried to explain but as usual Hannity didn’t hear a word he said.

The Jena 6 case began last fall when a new black student to the mostly white, rural Louisiana town of Jena sat under the “white tree,” so called because it was the place where the white kids at school congregated.

The next day three white boys on the rodeo team hung three nooses from the tree.

The white boys were only given an in-school suspension, their act deemed no more than a “prank.”

The day after that several of the school’s black high school football stars organized a peaceful silent protest under the tree. The school freaked, called in the police and the next day Reed Walters, the local D.A., addressed the school. There, he is reported to have looked at the black kids in the audience, waved his pen in the air and said, “With a stroke of this pen, I can make your life disappear.”

The football season was a good one for Jena and for a few months there was relative quiet in the town. Then on November 30th, a wing of the high school was burned down. Whites thought it was blacks and the blacks assumed it was the whites.

The always excellent Wade Goodman of NPR reported what happened next:

“The next night, 16-year-old Robert Bailey and a few black friends tried to enter a party attended mostly by whites. When Bailey got inside, he was attacked and beaten. The next day, tensions escalated at a local convenience store. Bailey exchanged words with a white student who had been at the party. The white boy ran back to his truck and pulled out a pistol grip shotgun. Bailey ran after him and wrestled him for the gun.
After some scuffling, Bailey and his friends took the gun away and brought it home. Bailey was eventually charged with theft of a firearm, second-degree robbery and disturbing the peace. The white student who pulled the weapon was not charged at all.

The following Monday, Dec. 4, a white student named Justin Barker was loudly bragging to friends in the school hallway that Robert Bailey had been whipped by a white man on Friday night. When Barker walked into the courtyard, he was attacked by a group of black students. The first punch knocked Barker out and he was kicked several times in the head. But the injuries turned out to be superficial. Barker was examined by doctors and released; he went out to a social function later that evening.

Six black students were arrested and charged with aggravated assault. But District Attorney Reed Walters increased the charges to attempted second-degree murder.”

The first black kid to go to court, Mychal Bell, then 16, was tried as an adult and convicted by an all-white jury. He faced 22 years in prison. After an outcry the charges were reduced; however, tomorrow Mychal Bell is to be sentenced on the lesser charges.

The white kids who attacked Bailey the night before have not been charged with anything.

As always happens in these cases, the blacks say of course there has always been racism in this little town, and the whites say their little town is just like any other small town full of good, churchgoing folk.

What white Southerners still fail to realize is their complicity in some of the most vicious and effective terrorism the world has ever seen. Lynchings were only the most visible and brutal embodiments of a system to terrorize the black minority. A noose is a symbol the way a swastika is a symbol. A noose hanging from a tree in that context is an almost unimaginably vicious act. Those white teens, instead of being ashamed of their terrorist ancestry, reveled in the evil. The adults who are charged with the education of all the students deemed it merely a prank.

The scariest part of this ordeal is that you know these boys are the relatively lucky ones for whom publicity might spare them. How many other black lives are still thrown away at the whim of our broken justice system?

(reprint from yahoo.com)

Advertisements

15 Responses to “Jena 6: Injustice in the South! Black Teens sent to jail….Murder 1 charges!”


  1. 1 canuck.jethro September 20, 2007 at 5:26 pm

    So, let me get this straight. A group of white teens symbolically threaten execution for every african-american person in the town with virtually no consequences (I deem in-school suspension as such), and when retaliation happens, they go to jail? The white guy was even able to attend a school social function after the altercation? Am I missing something here?

    What has to happen before the hard-core, “left behind the times” southerners “get it”. Being a white guy originally from the south conversing with people still living there about race relations, I get responses like “things have changed”. Really? Then why is it that when I visit my hometown Atlanta with my african-canadian wife and our children that we encounter hatred, not openly of course, but it’s there in the majority of white peoples glares, stares and looks. Everything’s OK? It’s getting better? Really, for who?

    Mass protest is wonderful, if I could have been there forhte Jena 6 March, I would have. What I’ve foundd is that changing attitudes one person at a time also works. If you can truly and intimately change just one person’s attitude, you will have made a difference. Changing one person’s perception and attitude is not an easy task. But, if you roll up you sleeves and make a personal, committed “this is how it is” connection, progress can be made – one person at a time. If everyone took it upon themselves to make that connection, the world would be a different place.

  2. 2 Piya Moore September 20, 2007 at 5:41 pm

    this is going on and i haven’t heard anything from the president the same person who has troops policing another place in the world for the injustice that’s going on there what about here . hey ophra where are you oh ! have to wait for the out come to see if they make it to your show

  3. 3 oneofthree September 20, 2007 at 8:14 pm

    It was my understanding that the black students were arrested on attempted 2nd degree murder, and the prosecutor changed it to aggravated battery with a deadly weapon amd that’s what Bell was convicted of?

    Also, it was my understanding that the white students were suspended from school, not an inschool suspension (I could be wrong) While I don’t agree that was enough, what they did, while horrible, was protected speech. It should have been dealt with more severly, but not criminally. Please note, I am in NO WAY condoneing the handing of nooses, esp in a southern town where the visual creates pain and suffering – legally, it is protected speech.

    I also agree that the white students who attacked him, should be charged. However, the black students, if the allegations are true, did commit a crime and should be punished accordingly. Just as you are commenting that the white students should be charged, the charges of battery or aggravated battery should stand as well.

  4. 4 M.Dantzler September 21, 2007 at 7:37 am

    I am from Louisiana and am not shock at all at these actions, but I believe individuals outside of the South are those who are shock the most. As much as things have change in society, also many things are still the same as well. Those with money and higher education are making the rules in small towns and these rules have very loose interpretations to support whatever theory they see fit. But my biggest question is to the United States people is how do we stand back and watch such wrong treatment and don’t do any thing where is the integrity of the true American race aside. I am glad for the support nation wide by the citizen, because we know that United States government only cares about things that eventually bring wealth to themselves and that’s why we the people must stand up for justice. The people of Jena and Central Louisiana should be ashamed of themselves to allow this to happen and what about the teachers and principal of the school, are these individuals education tomorrows leaders.

    It’s sad that things like this is happen in 2007, but honestly am not surprise because this is just one of many cases. So, hopefully people will wake up and see we still have a long way to go here in United States with constant justice for all.

  5. 5 G Smith September 21, 2007 at 2:56 pm

    No, “The scariest part of this ordeal” is that you and alot of other people believe that both of the beating incidents were equal. Do you really believe that a few kids crashing a party and one getting beat up and thrown out ,is the same as a 6 kids ambushing 1 kid in a school courtyard and knocking him unconscious and continuing to kick him in the head while he is on the ground? When the “Jena 6” decided to become a mob and seek out another person, That is when this ordeal was escalated and thrown at the feet of our “broken justice system”

  6. 6 oneofthree September 21, 2007 at 4:01 pm

    I don’t beleive they are equal – every case is different. However, they are both crimes, and both sets of defendant’s need to be held accountable.

  7. 7 Chad September 24, 2007 at 10:00 am

    If I, as a white guy, were to get together with my friends and beat a black guy unconscious, it would be a hate crime. I get so tired of the double standard in the media, and many others are beginning to feel the same way. Every time a black person gets convicted of a crime, they say it’s because they’re black. Never mind the crime committed, it’s not important. Sure the nooses were wrong, but there’s a difference between getting your feelings hurt and nearly being killed.

    Blacks can be racist just as much as whites, just look at the 13 year old white kid in Virginia who got attacked by a group of blacks for no reason other than he was white.

  8. 8 Michael Cousins September 27, 2007 at 10:09 pm

    Black-on-white crime statistics far surmount those of the white-on-black variety, or so argue our national media. Where’s Jesse Jackson when one genuinely needs him? And why, indeed, are blacks in America so increasingly violent? This isn’t Rwanda, after all….

  9. 9 Ellisa Clarke Voice of the People October 29, 2007 at 7:49 am

    It is not acceptable in this day and age wheather living in the United States or in the United Kingdom or any where else in the world, for anyone to be subjected to injustices. We beleive that everyone should be treated the same in respect of crimes againts humanity, This is not just for the poor residents living in our communities both here and abroad, but also for those who are in a position of responsibility not allowing themselves to be used as a bias tool. When one beleives in the truth and know the truth under the law of their indivuals Human Rights. Then the truth will always set oneseft free.

    Notwithstanding that Black/white should be able to live in peace now than ever before. Black/white people will never be diminished this is a fact all one needs to do is TO GET USED TO IT. This is the 21st Century.

    Ellisa Clarke Sheffield United Kingdom

  10. 10 Ellisa Clarke Voice of the People October 29, 2007 at 7:49 am

    It is not acceptable in this day and age wheather living in the United States or in the United Kingdom or any where else in the world, for anyone to be subjected to injustices. We beleive that everyone should be treated the same in respect of crimes againts humanity, This is not just for the poor residents living in our communities both here and abroad, but also for those who are in a position of responsibility not allowing themselves to be used as a bias tool. When one beleives in the truth and know the truth under the law of their indivuals Human Rights. Then the truth will always set oneseft free.

    Notwithstanding that Black/white should be able to live in peace now than ever before. Black/white people will never be diminished this is a fact all one needs to do is TO GET USED TO IT. This is the 21st Century.

    Ellisa Clarke Sheffield United Kingdom

  11. 11 Ralph Abernathy November 4, 2007 at 8:37 am

    You’d better read journalist Craig Franklin’s piece, “Editor Believes Media Created Myths About Jena 6” (The Christian Science Monitor), before calling the kettle black, Ellisa. Otherwise, empty, factless pontification does no one good, and serves only to give false hope when indeed there is none.

  12. 12 HogPougsrot April 1, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    Hello there, Happy April Fool’s Day!

    Uncle Pete never asked the Lord for anything, but one day he heard about this Oregon Lottery… He began to think about it, and think about it… Then a couple of days later, he asked the Lord,
    “You know Lord, I never asked you for anything, I’ve been going to church every Sunday, praising you and thanking you for what I have, and I sure would like to win that lottery!”
    Well, a couple of years went by and Uncle Pete still wanted to, and didn’t win that Oregon Lottery. One day while plowing a field he starts thinking about not winning the lottery, and get frustrated, so he decides to ask the Lord why He won’t help him to win the lottery.
    He yelled up at the sky, “Lord, I never asked you for ana’ thin’ but ta’ win that there Oregon Lottery, and You never did help, well WHY?”
    Then the clouds above began to part and in a booming voice he heard the Lord say,
    “Pete, I’m gonna need some help on this, you have to buy a ticket first.”

    Happy April Fool’s Day!

  13. 13 coconut oil acne April 22, 2013 at 5:07 am

    Symptoms most associated with Xeroderma (dry skin) are scaling, which is the visible peeling of the outer skin layer,
    itching and cracks in the skin. These skin conditions are
    actually contact dermatitis and become very dry.
    And olive oil soaps are a purely moisturizing luxury.

  14. 14 almond oil April 27, 2013 at 9:56 pm

    That enzyme is present in the human gut and inside the nut itself.
    A good facial moisturizer is a critical part of daily face care routine,
    and as part of a facial cream or facial moisture oil, almond
    oil gives extra nourishment needed without feeling oily or weighted
    down. If you are suffering from thin and brittle hair,
    almond oil can make your hair grow thicker and stronger over time as well.

  15. 15 monoi oil April 27, 2013 at 11:16 pm

    Perhaps you recall chamomile from the times you were sick and your parent, friend,
    or partner, gave you a hot cup of this therapeutic drink to
    ease your suffering stomach. The lack of natural oils and moisture
    in the hair is the most important factor for the increasing hair problems of today.
    Lastly, I looked at the price, and saw it was less than 10 bucks.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




advertisment

Categories

September 2007
M T W T F S S
« Aug   Oct »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

%d bloggers like this: