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Have you guys heard about the "Jena 6"?

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CatWoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 12:48 PM
Original message
Have you guys heard about the "Jena 6"?
A White Judge, White Jury, and White Prosecutor Calling White Witnesses Leads To Conviction of Black Youth

Injustice in Jena: The 'White Tree'

by Bill Quigley

In a small still mostly segregated section of rural Louisiana, an all white jury heard a series of white witnesses called by a white prosecutor testify in a courtroom overseen by a white judge in a trial of a fight at the local high school where a white student who had been making racial taunts was hit by black students. The fight was the culmination of a series of racial incidents starting when whites responded to black students sitting under the "white tree" at their school by hanging three nooses from the tree. The white jury and white prosecutor and all white supporters of the white victim were all on one side of the courtroom. The black defendant, 17 year old Mychal Bell, and his supporters were on the other. The jury quickly convicted Mychal Bell of two felonies - aggravated battery and conspiracy to commit aggravated battery. Bell, who was a 16 year old sophomore football star at the time he was arrested, faces up to 22 years in prison. Five other black youths await similar trials on attempted second degree murder and conspiracy charges.

Yes, you read that correctly. The rest of the story, which is being reported across the world in papers in China, France and England, is just as chilling.

The trouble started under "the white tree" in front of Jena High School. The "white tree" is where the white students, 80% of the student body, would always sit during school breaks.

In September 2006, a black student at Jena high school asked permission from school administrators to sit under the "white tree." School officials advised them to sit wherever they wanted. They did.

The next day, three nooses, in the school colors, were hanging from the "white tree." The message was clear. "Those nooses meant the KKK, they meant ^Niggers, we're going to kill you, we're going to hang you till you die,'" Casteptla Bailey, mom of one of the students, told the London Observer.

The Jena high school principal found that three white students were responsible and recommended expulsion. The white superintendent of schools over-ruled the principal and gave the students a three day suspension saying that the nooses were just a youthful stunt. "Adolescents play pranks," the superintendent told the Chicago Tribune, "I don't think it was a threat against anybody."

The African-American community was hurt and upset. "Hanging those nooses was a hate crime, plain and simple," according to Tracy Bowens, mother of students at Jena High.

http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2007/07/14/18435382.ph...
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alcibiades_mystery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:00 PM
Response to Original message
1. I've heard of it...it's huge in the black blogosphere
That said, I don't know much about the case other than summaries like this one. On its face, it does seem like an outrage, but again, I plead ignorance on the details. I found that many of these summaries don't really include much on the actual assault, which always strikes me as curious. There's no doubt that the white students were acting like a bunch of racist douchebags.
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CatWoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:26 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. I heard about it on the radio today
on the Al Sharpton Show.

I'm wondering if the white judicial system can be held liable for violation of civil rights?
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Kool Kitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 04:41 PM
Response to Reply #2
28. CatWoman,
go to the amy Goodman website, www.democracynow.org . Whe did an extensive show on this a couple weeks ago, if I am remembering correctly. She has transcripts and audios of her shows on the site. Terrific show, horrible situation for these young people.
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CatWoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 07:26 PM
Response to Reply #28
31. Kool Kitty
thank you very much :hi:
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Maraya1969 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:56 PM
Response to Reply #1
10. I agree with you. How can you make a fair judgment unless you know
who was hurt and how bad? Are there just a few broken noses or is someone paralyzed for life? Who started the fight?

:shrug:
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lies and propaganda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #10
19. the white kids did it all...
started with the nooses, jumped one of the 6 at a party and one of the noose people freaking sister jumped in!
Then two of the 6 were at a convenience store where one of the noose people pulled a gun on them, where they wrestled and the two boys were able to take the gun and leave...

Then there was the major brawl and thats all it was.. a fight. I saw a million of these big group fights growing up there. Nothing that warrants an all white jury and attempted murder charges, whereas the white kids got simple battery...

its a sad, disgusting, outrageous story..
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Maraya1969 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 03:47 PM
Response to Reply #19
24. Wow that is horrible. I'm at a loss for words. I hope this can be fixed
somehow. Please let us know what, if anything can be done.
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Bluerthanblue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:30 PM
Response to Original message
3. just did today- here

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

it's important for people to know about this.

thanks!
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CatWoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. thanks, didn't know it was already posted
as I said above, I just heard about it today, too.

Oh well -- can't have too many threads on this.

:hi:
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Bluerthanblue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 04:38 PM
Response to Reply #4
27. i agree, it took
awhile for this news to make it here, the more people that hear about it the better imo. ;)


blu
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mainegreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:40 PM
Response to Original message
5. You want to know why Northerners mock the South? It's this bullshit.
Right or wrong, this is why the South has the image it has. Until states purge the dumb racist assholes out of the system, bring their legal/punitive system out of the middle ages, the label 'backwards' is going to stick.

(And no I don't really condone mocking the South, but I sure understand what motivates some to.)
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:45 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. And flying the Confederate flag
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CatWoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:56 PM
Response to Reply #5
9. hey - I was born in the South, raised in the North
returned to the South about 10 years ago.

Now I see why I left in the first place.
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lies and propaganda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:43 PM
Response to Reply #9
16. that why I dont go back now...
I love Louisiana so much but i certainly cant live somewhere where my every belief is challenged daily.
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MagickMuffin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:50 PM
Response to Original message
7. I started a thread on July 19th, that got NO responses
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mainegreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #7
11. Perhaps your psychadelic acid-test sig line causes people to go into shock?
Forcing peoples eyes to roll right over your posts?
:P
I keeed!
It's funny how sometimes a topic floats, while other times it sinks...
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aikoaiko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #7
13. I remember that post. I read and didn't even know how to respond.

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Blue_Roses Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 01:53 PM
Response to Original message
8. Okay...
this blows my mind. As someone who is from Louisiana, I am disgusted ...

I've been writing about this very thing and I thought bringing some light into this situation would help. Long story short, it's waaay past time for this bullshit to stop.

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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:09 PM
Response to Original message
12. I hadn't seen this. Thanks for posting it. We are a bigoted country. It isn't just
the South, it's just much more upfront in the South.

Look at the rate of blacks in the criminal justice system in the US and it's obvious the same stuff happens all across the country even if it's better covered up.
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Imagevision Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:25 PM
Response to Original message
14. YO! where is Jesse Jackson when you really need him?!!
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lies and propaganda Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:41 PM
Response to Original message
15. Its a goddamned tragedy...
The black kids get attempted murder charges after being jumped multiple times, and a freaking Robbery charge for being able to take the gun one of these assholes pulled on them...

another Louisiana proud moment :sarcasm:
I dont how its possible to love and yet be so ashamed of my home.
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proud patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:44 PM
Response to Original message
17. Yes I have and it's an outrage
:grr:
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myrna minx Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:45 PM
Response to Original message
18. This is just appalling. I just don't even know what to say. K&R.
:-(
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Swamp Rat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 02:47 PM
Response to Original message
20. Yes.
And I know Bill Quigley.

The three white students should be charged for the hate crime they committed.

All the black students should be acquitted. They are the victims.
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annabanana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 03:31 PM
Response to Original message
21. heartbreaking and infuriating all at once. . .n/t
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silverlib Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 03:44 PM
Response to Original message
22. Somethin we can do - Sign the petition
http://www.naacp.org/get-involved/activism/petitions/je...

I copied the link from this morning's post.
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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 03:46 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Thanks Silverlib
For posting the link.
Gov. Blanco needs to hear from a lot of people.
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PA Democrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 07:30 PM
Response to Reply #22
32. Thanks. I signed the petition.
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il_lilac Donating Member (756 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 10:24 PM
Response to Reply #22
42. done
thanks for the chance to do something!
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KamaAina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 03:59 PM
Response to Original message
25. Town hall-style forum down there this evening (in a couple of hours)
Anyone in central La. (around Alexandria) might want to head on up there... if not, it appears a rally is set for Tuesday.

http://www.thetowntalk.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=20...

After months of being under a national microscope and with racial tensions running high, several federal and state groups are hoping a forum tonight will help heal the community of Jena.

The U.S. Department of Justice's Community Relations Service is sponsoring the community education forum at 6 p.m. today at Goodpine Middle School in Jena....

Although Bell's sentencing was moved to Sept. 20, Jones said family and other supporters locally and nationwide still are planning on coming together Tuesday to show support for the "Jena Six" with a rally.

But Jones said she is still "kind of leery of things" after two out-of-town men, both white, were charged earlier this month for running over a church sign at a black church, in what many are describing as a hate crime.


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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 04:29 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. US DOJ Community Relations
Comes in to keep us all from rioting.
It does not investigate and it does not file charges.
What we need is DOJ investigation and/or help from the State Police.
Please sign the NAACP petition to Gov. Blanco.
Thanks
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KamaAina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 07:14 PM
Response to Reply #26
30. Done! Mahalo (thank you), Anita
for those of you not in the know, Anita is past president of an NAACP chapter elsewhere in La. :hi: One of the great things about DU is that people who actually know something about these issues, wherever they might be happening, are sure to turn up.
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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 07:54 PM
Response to Reply #30
33. smilie face
If I knew how.
Thanks
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 05:26 PM
Response to Original message
29. It was covered on Democracy Now
Yes, it sounds like pure Jim Crow "justice."
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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 08:33 PM
Response to Reply #29
35. Here's Amy Goodman on Jena 6
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BlooInBloo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 07:56 PM
Response to Original message
34. It was brought up afew months ago - DU didn't much care.
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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 08:34 PM
Response to Reply #34
36. well we do and if we educate, they will too!
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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 08:36 PM
Response to Reply #36
37. more on Jena 6
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alarimer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 08:36 PM
Response to Original message
38. Why is the white student(s) not charged for hanging the noose?
Edited on Thu Jul-26-07 08:37 PM by alarimer
or expelled from school at any rate? I see- politics

WTF? An adolescent prank?

Some people are clueless.
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Anita Garcia Donating Member (869 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 08:44 PM
Response to Reply #38
40. The white students were not charged
for what I believe to be a violation of federal hate crimes legislation.
Why?
Racism.
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Zywiec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 08:39 PM
Response to Original message
39. It's not a rock group started by this Jenna?
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me b zola Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 10:17 PM
Response to Original message
41. k&r
The "conservative revolution" have made hate crimes and insitutional acceptence of them in vogue again.

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annm4peace Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 11:06 PM
Response to Reply #41
43. I posted about Jena 6 a couple weeks ago
* I have tried to spread the word on this.

** How many hours did CNN and Faux News spend on the invesitgage of the Duke Lacross team.

What has happened to these high school kids is far worse.

I hope enough money has been gathered for the bail of Bell.

I'm glad the Jena 6 has been posted again.
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proud patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-26-07 11:33 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. You are not the only one
Mostly they have not received the kind of attention
I would hope for .
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