Friday, November 16, 2007

Nooses and Jena 6

I heard on the radio today that the judge on Mychal Bell's case has opened the trial to the media. Good. The idea that they were really going to try anything around this case behind closed doors makes me twitch. And apparently it made the Chicago Tribune twitch as well, thankfully.

I also read yesterday on The Wild Hunt about other noose cases. The latest one being in front of a pagan store in Bakersfield, CA. How lovely. Add that to the hanged Hillary witch at Samhain time and you just have an incredibly lovely time that we seem to be coming into right now.

Going back to the Jena 6, thinking about this case again brings to mind when it first hit my current events board (I understand now, quite late into the game), I was on my honeymoon and saw the protests on TV that were happening at the time. From watching the news and reading one (now I realize to be quite biased) story here were my initial thoughts at the time:

Certainly these boys did not go about this in the right way. However, the idea that a death threat like hanging nooses could go un-reacted to by those targetted by it is absurd. That that action did go un-reacted to by the authorities, I find disgusting. And the "attempted murder" charge is absolutely ridiculous. They beat up someone for threatening their lives. That's not attempted murder.

Everyone should be punished in this case, but the way things have gone so far, from the articles I've read (which weren't much, admittedly), I have a strong feeling I'm going to end up in the Jena 6 camp.

And the more I've learned, the more disgusted I've become. Looking back over the thread and reading people's responses as well I am struck by seeing the way an all white (as far as I know) audience dealt with it. From the stories quoted to the responses to those stories... Just, interesting. I was very glad to see that a few of us did realize this whole case didn't smell right, and one poster especially tried very hard to derail the side tangents of the people defending the authorities.

Very honestly I think this will be one of the defining issues of the state of civil rights in this country at this time. And that so many of the people I read just a) jumped to the conclusion that the case was overblown because of the involvement of Al Sharpton and b) jumped to the conclusion that 6 black students would try to "beat to death" white students over *just* nooses, I find...Um, naive? At best? That they wouldn't immediately think there had to be more to the story was astonishing. I'm interested to see what will happen when I post the updates around this case.

Also, if you don't mind, any PoC readers I may have, how do you feel about Wikipedia's recounting of the facts of the case? I am currently reading through the entire entry, and it doesn't seem to be exactly the story I've read on some blogs by PoC.

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