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Aug 30, 2007

Focus:Civil Rights
Action Request:Petition
Location:Louisiana, United States
When the boys had simply protested against the nooses that had been hung from the so-called 'white kids' tree' on the school grounds, the Louisiana District Attorney came to the high school with police to try to coerce the boys to end their protest :
"I can take away your lives with a stroke of my pen," he said.
In the events that followed, he proved that that was exactly what he intended to do..


Jena on CNN, Dailykos

September 5th, 2007 at 1:14 pm (Jena)

Yesterday, the Jena story was featured on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360.  Finally, the mainstream media is picking up this story!  This is a great day for our democracy, when the real news cuts through all that celebrity gossip nonsense.   I agree heartily with all the folks who are leaving comments on our site like: “Why haven’t I heard about the Jena story on TV?  I’m so tired of hearing about Paris Hilton while our democracy falls apart!”  Hang in there, now we’re cooking with gas!

And thanks to Blueintheface for posting this excellent update on DailyKos
Post a Comment:
http://friendsofjustice.wordpress.com/2007/09/05/jena-on-cnn-dailykos/

Petitions to sign
http://www.colorofchange.org/jena/?id=2137-271007

http://www.petitiononline.com/aZ51CqmR/petition.html  

http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/2446/t/1373/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=10



Southern Poverty Law Center Seeks Justice for The Jena Six
August 15, 2007 – Responding to a groundswell of public outrage over the racially charged prosecutions of six black teens accused of attempted murder in Jena, La., the Southern Poverty Law Center has brought one of the state's top defense attorneys into the looming court battle.

Accused of beating a white student, the black teens – known as the Jena 6 – each were charged with attempted second-degree murder and conspiracy.

The white student, 18-year-old Justin Barker, reportedly suffered a concussion and a swollen eye. He was treated at a hospital but was released the same day and attended a school event that night.

The Barker incident occurred amid a period of racial tension that began when white students hung nooses from a campus tree after black students had dared to sit under it.

The principal recommended expelling the white students who hung the nooses, but his decision was overruled in favor of three-day suspensions by the school superintendent, an act that outraged the black community.

"These prosecutions are a symbol of a justice system gone wrong," said SPLC President Richard Cohen. "There's leniency for white kids and harshness for black kids. For some time now, we've been working closely with advocates in Louisiana, and many of our members have contacted us to express their shock and outrage over the charges."

The SPLC has retained James Boren of Baton Rouge as a cooperating SPLC attorney to assist with the defense. Boren is a former president of the Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

The SPLC is working with other advocates at the grassroots and national levels that are deeply involved in the fight and share a commitment to racial justice. These groups include Friends of Justice, ColorofChange.org, the ACLU and the NAACP.

One of the black students, Mychal Bell, who was 16 at the time of the incident, was tried as an adult in June and convicted by an all-white jury of aggravated second-degree battery and conspiracy. No witnesses for the defense were called by his court-appointed attorney. He faces a possible 22-year prison sentence when he is sentenced on September 20.

"In so many places throughout the country, the scales of justice are weighted against defendants, particularly those who are poor and of color," Cohen said. "By bringing in a great lawyer like Jim Boren, we hope to balance the scales."

Trial dates have not been set for Bryant Purvis, Carwin Jones, Robert Bailey Jr. and Theodore Shaw, all 18, and an unidentified juvenile.


The "Free the Jena Six" Take-Action Newsletter/Blog,
è All the petitions to sign on a single page, as well as statements of support from groups such as the NAACP;
è Leave YOUR  statement of support to the boys; your opportunity to praise their courage and show them how many we are to have embraced their cause ! Don't let them get discouraged :
http://www.freewebs.com/freethejenasix/


Watch, listen, read what Democracy Now !   broadcast on the two following radio shows:

Do take advantage of the "Watch 128 stream/ Watch 256 stream" blue links after each title below, as seeing and listening to the speakers is much more gratifying than reading the tapescripts on the site.

The Case of the Jena Six: Black High School Students Charged with Attempted Murder for Schoolyard Fight After Nooses Are Hung from Tree

Six black students at Jena High School in Central Louisiana were arrested last December after a school fight in which a white student was beaten and suffered a concussion and multiple bruises. The six black students were charged with attempted murder and conspiracy. They face up to 100 years in prison without parole. The fight took place amid mounting racial tension after a black student sat under a tree in the schoolyard where only white students sat. The next day three nooses were hanging from the tree. [includes rush transcript]
"A Modern-Day Lynching" - Parents of Jena Six Speak of Injustice, Racism in Sons' Prosecution

We speak with the parents of three of the 'Jena Six' - the black high school students charged with attempted murder for a school fight in which a white student was beaten up. We are joined by Caseptla Bailey, the mother of Robert Bailey and Tina Jones, the mother of Bryant Purvis - both of their sons are awaiting trial on charges of attempted second degree murder and conspiracy. We also speak with Marcus Jones, his son, Mychal Bell, was the first of the Jena Six to go on trial. He was convicted just over a week ago of aggravated battery and conspiracy. He faces* up to 22 years in prison when he is sentenced on July 31st. [includes rush transcript}
* He has in fact now been sentenced to 22 years

The Case of the Jena Six: Black High School Students Charged with Attempted Murder for Schoolyard Fight After Nooses Are Hung from Tree

Listen to Segment || Download Show mp3      
Watch 128k stream       Watch 256k stream       Read Transcript 
 

"A Modern-Day Lynching" - Parents of Jena Six Speak of Injustice, Racism in Sons' Prosecution

Listen to Segment || Download Show mp3      
Watch 128k stream       Watch 256k stream       Read Transcript 
   


Visibility: Everyone
Posted: Thursday August 30, 2007, 1:56 pm
Tags: rights civil humanrights racism injustice jimcrow lynching DeptOfJustice allwhitejury outrageousmiscarriageofjustice sixgoodboys innocenthighschoolstudents chargedwithattemptedmurder racismcontinues institutionalracism

Group Discussions
Comments

xochi Y. (54)
Monday September 3, 2007, 7:38 am
Thank you, Jill! This story is such an atrocious example of such blatant racism. Thanks for all you are doing!

Lauren Stone (586)
Tuesday September 4, 2007, 6:43 pm
Indeed, THANK YOU Jill for working on bring attention to this MOST deserving case.

LucyKaleido ScopeEyes (78)
Wednesday September 5, 2007, 3:11 am
Today I have updated this Alert to include the blog-newsletter that Lauren has created. I hope people are going to sit up and take notice.
Since I had already read two or three articles about this case, I had not yet watched the Democracy Now ! films posted above.

I have just watched the first and WOW! It is great. I am crying a bit, 'cause between what the combative, letter-writing mom says and what the dad says ("when my son gets out of prison, I'm gonna tell him, this is what it is to be black"), and, then, hearing Billy sing "Strange Fruit" during the short pause between parts I and II, it's just too much ! Tears are not very effective and I have dried them quickly. I'm already composing in my head what I want to say to these boys on Lauren's "Free the Jena Six" take action blog, and planning on doing a Google to find the photograph of all 6 boys which you see in the film. I want to post it, I want people to see them !

LucyKaleido ScopeEyes (78)
Thursday September 6, 2007, 3:07 am
Super !!!
Jena on CNN, Dailykos !

I've just redone this Action Alert to include 1)the news of the case featuring on CNN and
2)the link to the Friends of Justice site from which you can post a comment to demand more major news coverage of the Jena 6 !

Author

LucyKaleido ScopeEyes
female, age 59, committed relationship
Expat New Yorker, Paris, France
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