Last fall, when two Black high school students sat under the "white" tree on their campus, white students responded by hanging nooses from the tree. When Black students protested the light punishment for the students who hung the nooses, District Attorney Reed Walters came to the school and told the students he could "take [their] lives away with a stroke of [his] pen." Racial tension continued to mount in Jena, and the District Attorney did nothing in response to several egregious cases of violence and threats against black students. But when a white student--who had been a vocal supporter of the students who hung the nooses--taunted a black student, allegedly called several black students "nigger", and was beaten up by black students, six black students were charged with second-degree attempted murder. Last month, the first young man to be tried, Mychal Bell, was convicted. He faces up to 22 years in prison for a school fight.
Justice for the Jena 6
The lives of six young black men are being ruined by Jim Crow justice in Jena, Louisiana.
The District Attorney has refused to protect the rights of Jena's Black population and has turned the police and courts into instruments of intimidation and oppression.
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We can help turn things around by making it a political liability for the authorities of Jena to continue the racist status quo, and by forcing the Governor of Louisiana to intervene.
20th of September 2007: Thousands rally in Jena 'march for justice'