Earlier today I was listening on my MP3 player to an episode(from July 10th) of the "Democracy Now!" podcast and couldn't believe this news item!
It is an outrageous story of racism and injustice that is taking place in the town of Jena, Louisiana. The two videos below are part of the 'Democracy Now!' report and tell the story better than I could, so please watch them. I'm surprised that this story hasn't gotten national news coverage, but this was the first I'd heard the story.
There are actually six parts to this report, but I just put up these two. You can find the other sections on YouTube. Click the links below:
Part 3 Part 4 Part 5 Part 6
There's a petition here calling upon the Civil Rights Division of the U.S Department of Justice to investigate this case. I urge everyone to go and sign it to bring this to the attention of the Federal government. There are currently almost 5,000 signatures, please add yours.
There's a link in the sidebar (and the post title) to 'Democracy Now!' as well if you'd rather read the story. The website "Friends of Justice" also has updated information on this case. A defense fund has been set up to provide money for lawyers for the accused students who have not yet gone to trial. The address to send donations to that fund is as follows:
Jena 6 Defense Committee
PO BOX 2798
Jena, LA 71342
This kind of hatred and injustice CANNOT be tolerated--whether it be racism, homophobia, religious intolerance, or any other irrational hatred, it must be exposed and opposed !
Generally I don't get too upset or angry, but something about this story really got my blood boiling!
I think what first struck me was the fact that the black students at this school asked for permission to stand under what was considered to be the 'white students' tree. Since when does anyone have to be ask permission to stand in a particular spot? What kind of a country are we living in when the President commutes the sentence of one of his friends, while these students are being charged with serious crimes over a schoolyard fight?