Pam Spalding is right — we haven’t paid enough attention to the Jena 6, and I’m as guilty as anyone. My only excuse is that there are a number of other issues in the news lately I haven’t written about as well, like Blackwater, although I keep meaning to.

7 thoughts on “Derilict

  1. I’m ambivalant on the matter. On the one hand, obviously the kid that got beat was a racist thug, and I for one won’t shed a tear about his “pain”. Also, I am somewhat outraged as to why the kids hanging the nooses weren’t charged with anything … they should have been.

    On the other hand, these six kids did in fact beat the crap out of a person. They were originally charged with attempted murder, which was clearly a crock, but that has since been downgraded to battery … which is, in fact, what it is, so far as I know.

    Just because the vicitim in question is a piece of human garbage … just because the racism of the local society gave said victim a pass when he should have found his ass in jail … does not JUSTIFY committing a crime in return.

    In other words … I’d be a hell of a lot more sympathetic to the “Jena 6” cause if the slogan wasn’t “FREE the Jena 6” … shades of OJ…


  2. The kids did not, in fact, beat the crap out of a person…..if said
    ‘beaten person’ went to a dance a few hours later.

    BTW, I think there is a strong connection between Jena 6 and Blackwater. One demonstrates unequal justice domestically, the other demonstrates unequal justice internationally. In America, whites are not made subject to the same ‘justice’ as are blacks; in the world, Americans are not made subject to the same ‘justice’ as are those of other nationalities.

  3. I’ll forgive you, if only because my own fingers have been stilled by the heartbreak and rage I feel at each new detail I learn about what’s been going on down there, starting with the idea that there are still people in this country who fail to understand why people, especially black people in the South, would see nooses as something more than a “prank.”

  4. Back in the time of ‘Nam, when I was in the Navy, the story goes that Marines, in the Philippine town of Olongapo, just outside the base took to beating up sailors. These were ‘rat packs’; they would pick a place where a gang of Marines outnumbered the hapless sailors. A protest was filed by the Navy base CO to the Marine CO, who replied ‘there are combat troops, feeling their oats’.

    Soon after, gangs of sailors, who outnumber Marines, started beating Marines, which drew a complaint from the Marine CO, and the predictable reply from the Navy CO.. And the practice stopped.

    A few stupid, racist idiots threatened the Black community with the ‘prank’. Whites may have forgotten history, but Blacks have not. The horror of lynchings is real to a lot of them, and should be. So they retaliate, since the ‘prank’ was not taken seriously by authorities; there was no neck in the noose. The Jena 6 should be held responsible; let the charge fit the crime. “Disorderly Conduct’ seems about right. Let the word go out to the racists to knock it off, and to the Black community to chill.

  5. I do think the charges are extreme. Parents always forget that overreacting teaches kids the exactly wrong lesson. This is a situation that escalated because it was not responded to properly to begin with. Plus the protesters are correct that demonizing black boys and ignoring what whites do is the root of alot problems in this country.

  6. When I first heard this story a little over a month ago, I was only surprised I hadn’t heard about it sooner. I caught the end of the story (on CNN I think) and googled Mychal Bell. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. Wasn’t surprised that this still goes on but was disappointed to not have known about it sooner.

    Old sayings come to mind

    One step forward…..
    The more things change….

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