THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 20, 2007
6 a.m. – West Adams – Now why would I think that the Los Angeles Times
would have anything about today’s national day of action for the Jena 6
on the frontpage? I mean really, who am I kidding, we’re talking about
the Los Angeles Times and Black people doing something positive.
That ain’t gonna happen. But if there’s a riot in Jena or somewhere
else in America relating to Jena, you can bet your ass it will be on
the frontpage tomorrow with the headling ‘Blacks cause riot over Jena 6’
or something like that. Did your local daily paper have anything on
the frontpage about on today? I’m curious to know how other papers
8:30 a.m. – South L.A. – Blacks headed to work and school were for the most part dressed in Black today when I popped into Starbucks on Western @ Slauson. I ran into my friends Kishi and Crystal on their way to Southwest where they take classes.
12 Noon – Watts – Black students at Watts’ Locke High
have taken to the streets in Black carrying signs supporting the Jena
6. They’re marching towards Southwest College down Imperial
Highway…Also the students at Foshay Middle School in Los Angeles on Western @ Exposition Blvd have walked out…
3 p.m. – Hollywood – About 100 people participated in
a march and rally in Hollywood and some students walked out of classes
at a local high school. Sunset Boulevard was closed between Bronson and
Van Ness avenues for about an hour…
4 p.m. – Carson – I took a quick trip to Starbucks to get
my afternoon fix. My barista was a 19 year-old African-American male.
I asked him why he wasn’t wearing black. He looked at me funny. I
asked him if he knew what today was. He said Thursday. I began to
explain about the call to action and that Blacks were wearing black in
support of the Jena 6. "The Jena who?" I asked him if he read
newspapers, watched television news, or listened to the radio. He said
not really. I asked if he goes online. He said not much and that he
was mainly into cds. I shook my head and looked at the ground took my
coffee and left…
6:30 p.m. – South L.A. – My co-worker Vince and I dropped by the Community Call to Action and Accountability’s
teach-in and candlelight vigil on 81st street and Vermont where it was
standing room only. Everyone was sporting their Black as you can see
below, activist Najee Ali had on a Jena 6 t-shirt…
7:45 p.m. – Leimert Park – Hit the Shaw (Crenshaw) and headed over to the epicenter of L.A.’s Black community, Leimert Park
where hundreds were gathered for a rally in support of the Jena 6.
Young and old, men, women, boys, and girls ascended upon the park
wearing black and carrying signs in support of the Jena 6.
8:30 p.m. Jefferson Park – Hit Starbucks on Crenshaw and Rodeo for my evening fix…
8:45 p.m. – West Adams – Home safe and sound…
HERE’S HOW YOU CAN PROTEST FROM ANYWHERE:
- African-Americans are being asked to wear BLACK on September 20th to protest Un-Equal Justice wherever you are.
- Find a March and Rally Near You (For my Angelino’s it’s 4 p.m. @ Leimert Park and 6 p.m. on 81st and Vermont w/ the Nation of Islam and the Community Call to Action and Accountability)
- Download Flyers, Mini-flyers, and Postcards to Hand Out
- Sign the Petition [to Justice Department]
- Sign the Petition [Louisiana Governor]
- Register to Vote
- Contact your Congressmember
- Tell your friends, family members, and co-workers to do the same
- Write Mychal Bell a letter of support and encouragement!
LaSalle Correctional Center
15976 Highway 165
Olla, LA 71465-4801
Mychal would like to write back but unfortunately a book of stamps costs $42. If you are writing and would like a response kindly enclose (now this is old school) a SASE (or self addressed stamped envelope).
THE CASE OF THE JENA 6
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.
The six charged are: Robert Bailey Jr., 17, whose bail was set at $138,000; Theo Shaw, 17, whose bail totaled $130,000; Carwin Jones, 18, whose bail was $100,000; Bryant Purvis, 17, whose bail was $70,000; Mychal Bell, a 16 year-old high school sophomore was charged as an adult whose bail was set at $90,000; and a still unidentified minor. Last month, Mychal Bell, was convicted. He faces up to 22 years in prison and is scheduled to be sentenced today.
Melissa Bell on Monday, June 25th, outside
LaSalle Parish Courthouse. Her son, Mychal Bell, was convicted of 2nd
degree aggravated battery and conspiracy to commit same.
Do not depend on national mainstream American media to report on
the case of the Jena 6, at least not while the Phil Spector trial is
going on. Somehow, a celebrity accused of murder is more important and
relevant to Americans than the case of six Black students facing
extensive prison time for being Black. Even during the observation of
the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and the national focus on
Louisiana, there was no mention that I saw, heard, or read of regarding
what could shape up to be one of the most important trials of the year
as it relates to Blacks and America’s continued racism. Thank God for
the Black press and bloggers that have given this story life and keep
it alive each and everyday.