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Massive success in Jena as 10,000 march to the back of beyond for justice

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[Jeebus. Local reports: 60,000, via the local Lafayette Advertiser. Times: 10,000. AP: "buses lined up for miles on Highway 49 into Jena."]

jena OK, OK, not the "back of beyond." But next door to the back of beyond.

I mean, 10,000 marchers to a small Southern town not on the Interstate, not on Amtrak, with no airport? That's fucking impressive. Far more so than the recent events in DC (not that any tactical adjustments would have led to a different outcome, there).

So, herewith a roundup of Jena coverage; I started out in comments, and then got so many links I thought I'd turn it into a post.

Prometheus 6 summarizes the long train of abuses that led to the march. Jack and Jill gives the perspective from Oak Bluffs. Afrobella gives a roundup of media coverage. Afronetizen: J'accuse! Field Negro points out that it wasn't really necessary for Steve Gilliard to be alive for the Jena story to be covered.

"You are fucking kidding me right? You were preoccupied because the "Senate condemned Moveon."*

Pam's House Blend demolishes the excuses for lack of coverage in the "mainstream" blogs (ouch!). Thin Black Duke agrees, commenting that the media black out continues:

I’ve been watching the news all day, and I’ve yet to see a single mention of incidents like the white dude that pulled a shotgun on a bunch of black people in Jena, LA, resulting in the black folks getting charged with theft for wrestling the gun away, while the gun-holder got off scott free.

(I just love the suckitude that they were charged for theft. It's kinda like the Chinese, back when they were Red, billing the families for the bullets used to shoot political prisoners. And now, from Too Sense, the local MBFs are after them. Naturally. ) Angry Black Bitch deconstructs the accountability dodge put forth by the prosecutors:

Nooses are a terroristic threat.

(Will George Allen please pick up the white courtesy phone?) And Oliver Willis cuts to the bottom line:

The thousands of people in Jena today show to me that the anti-war movement has lots to learn and that nobody is as organized on the left as civil rights organizations. Period.

(Be sure to read the numerous comments.) Bingo!

And as Alas, a blog says: Next stop, War on Drugs.** Amen.

Oh, and some blogs that I was much more familiar with, before this morning: Orcinus here. TAPPED. Maha. Steve Benen. And, of course, our own CD and Xenophon.

Oddly, they (well, we...) all seem to link to each other. And not to the blogs I listed first. Sigh. Though not C&L, which links to a petition from Color of Change (only 10,000 needed to reach the 300,000 goal). Banners here.

NOTE The Republic of T links to Technorati's Top 10 Black bloggers. (One of whom, of course, is Pam's House blend, who has a linky roundup of the controversy swirling round evil extremely not gay vote fraudster Patrick McHenry.)

NOTE * "Merely" symbolic though the MoveOn events may have been, nevertheless the conclusion I draw is that the regular Democrat Party gets no money from me. MoveOn gets money, individual candidates, especially primary challengers to Bush Dogs, get money. Net candidates get money. Rahm Emmanuel gets no money. If a lot of people are thinking the same way, that’s not insignificant. Nor is the second conclusion that many drew: That the 2006 elections at most slowed the onrushing disaster that the Conservative movement, in the person of George Bush, is organizing for the country, and did not reverse it. So, Hill staffers, if any of you are reading this, the silence you’re hearing is probably because we’ve concluded your boss is a useless tool.

UPDATE Another killer detail:

Two fights between blacks and whites roiled the town that weekend, culminating in a school-yard brawl on Dec. 4 that led the district attorney to charge the Jena Six with attempted murder. The lethal weapon he cited to justify the charge: the boys' sneakers.

Maybe they were heavy, bronzed sneakers from the mantelpiece at home? Yes, that would explain it.

UPDATE On to The Gang Fear And Pandering Act. Who will that be directed against, I wonder?

UPDATE I see I forgot to mention that "extremely not gay vote fraudster Patrick McHenry" is a Republican. But after all--was that really necessary?

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!—Xan

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Submitted by lambert on

... made this sticky at the top. I wasn't sure or the quality...

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!—Xan

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

Lambert, Dude, Massive Fucking Post!!

I couldn’t figure out what to say to the silence. I still haven’t processed the day. The echoing chasm between worlds. That, oh so familiar, feeling of being a fly in the buttermilk, knowing "THIS", this willful oblivion America calls its national consciousness, is why "THEY" hate "us". Glad to see you in the game.

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

Don't forget the money quote about the DA coming in and telling only the black HS students without their parents present "I can end your life with the stroke of a pen."

Submitted by lambert on

Gack, but I was writing from the present forward. Dunno about fly in the buttermilk. Maybe canary in the coalmine? Or possibly trout in the milk?

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!—Xan

kelley b's picture
Submitted by kelley b on

despite being cleared of all charges.

If they keep him in jail despite his innocence, exactly what has been accomplished?

Did everyone go home before the kid was actually released? The solidarity is a great thing, but if they end up keeping the kid in the slammer without charging him even after he's offically cleared, what good does it do? In case no one's noticed, they don't need charges to "legally" keep us in jail these days.

No Hell below us
Above us, only sky

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

yeah i kinda noticed that too. But now we have suppport right!

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

according to this story in the Chicago Tribune.

District Judge J.P. Mauffray declined a defense motion for a writ of habeas corpus that sought to have Mychal Bell, 17, released. A second judge also turned down a defense motion seeking to have Mauffray recused from the case.
The local district attorney prosecuting the case, Reed Walters, has vowed to appeal that ruling and to press ahead with his cases against the other five youths, who are free on bond.
After the school superintendent dismissed the nooses as a prank, angering black students and their parents, a series of fights between white and black youths ensued, both on and off the campus.

Walters declined to lodge serious criminal charges against white youths who attacked blacks in two incidents. But when the six black teenagers jumped the white student at the school, beating him and knocking him unconscious, Walters initially charged them with attempted murder, later reducing the charge to aggravated second-degree battery. The white youth was treated at a local hospital and attended a school ceremony several hours after the beating incident.

Bell was not cleared of all charges.

Bell's conviction was vacated by an appellate court deciding he was improperly tried as an adult.

Bell remains in custody because there is a juvenile proceeding against him for conspiracy.

Now.
SIX against ONE.
WTF?

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!-- Xan

It's so shocking. Many liberals would like to be believe that the race issue was about class, but this proves it is so not that easily wrapped up. The lack of support and the nasty comments on the progressive boards when someone dares to bring up this obvious travesty of justice simply boggles the mind. Daily Kos and Huffington with their "just got there coverage" after the Democrats of note said, "Hey that's messed up," Only then did they say something. Only after it was safe. These mainstream progressive blogs are nothing more than PR machines for the left, that's all they aren't news. They aren't crap.

I hope they do not give these fake, marketing and wannabe pieces of crap streetwalker pr machines press passes, because real journalist find the truth before it's safe.

They put their neck out there and Daily Kos and Huffington and many other mainstream progressive blogs did not.

Even when they did cover it way freakin' late and in my opinion they covered it in this safe "we got to be open and look at all sides" kind of a way.

Are the kidding? Are they bloody f**king kidding. These are the same people that have no problem with MoveOn putting out a big gigantic attack ad in a major paper, but now they are going to be cautious and careful and not rush to judgment.

Such ball-less wonders.

If Hillary and Edwards had never agreed that this (the Jena 6) was something that was very wrong those blogs would have never said anything.

Such cowards, such chicken sh*t cowards.

Browne, www.thebusbench.com

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

and i'm proud of that. as for the overall travesty of what's happening- well, it's not like we didn't see it coming.

this morning, i read about blackwater gunning down civvies and a guy who got stopped by the border thugs coming in from canada because of some letters he wrote the editor of the area paper. say it with me kids: fascism.

sure, it's just "little" things like a couple of negro students and some guy with an arab first name. and white nuns and DFHs with computers. move along, nothing to see here.

Submitted by lambert on

Thank you for responding, Browne. Your comment is very important to us. Please do not hesitate to comment again.

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!—Xan

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

and we talked about it in context with the Michael Vick plea as I recall.

So I think we were ahead of what Browne has complained of, and which I will describe as "the power curve."

Browne has identified something important: there are people who care -- like Corrente, not to blow our own horn too hard -- and there are people with other priorities, like Markos.

The community at DailyKos is not restricted to people with other priorities. Thank all the deities for that. Because, seriously, if all we wanted was "to elect democrats" -- we wouldn't be doing journalism. We'd be doing pr. We'd be in sales. We'd be propaganda merchants.

We'd be NO DAMN DIFFERENT than Karl Rove.

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!-- Xan

Submitted by lambert on

I wrote the post because I personally had used one of the dodge's Pam identified ("lack of expertise") which, though true, is all the more effective a dodge for being so.

And we did post on it, I agree, but not to the same degree or the same intensity that others did; in other words, we didn't join a campaign.

It's also clear that the Jena 6 organization was stovepiped, and not widely distributed through the entire blogosphere. That's unfortunate.

So, I don't feel especially culpable, but I do feel a sense of missed opportunity. We didn't "connect."

Of course, I think that commenters who identify us with the "mainstream" don't know us very well. Then, again, they have their own blogs; this is our blog.

I also think that the commenters are missing the point on the MoveOn ad, big time, as I say in the NOTE. They need to check their attitudes on that, I would say.

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!—Xan

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

Try 210 against 36.

Yeah Sarah.

That is the way the world has worked at least since 1986. Really since 1492 but . . . Not saying it isn't fucked up but, if you can't fight I suggest not using the "N" word. Particularly when the people you are taunting have been shot at, beat up, and threatened with Lynching by the very people you call your friends. We won't mention a DA threatening to kill children. (Naw I will)

That is what galls me. If a Black DA had gone to some rich white suburb and sequestered the white kids in an assembly, without their parents knowledge, and told them he would end thier lives with the stroke of his pen. He would be under the jail before their tears dried.

You realize Reed Walters threatened to KILL OUR CHILDREN. All of them.

Please understand the calculation that is going on in Black America.

We are trying to figure out how much protection we have under the law from law enforcement and the criminal justice system.

How much shit do you expect people to eat?

Submitted by lambert on

From what little I know, the 6-on-1 incident is the culmination of a nasty series of incidents going back at least six months.

Plus, everybody gets to be an asshole. And the criminal justice system should work without fear or favor for assholes too.

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!—Xan

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

at all.

Maybe I never will.

I know what it's like to be absolutely physically powerless.
I know what it's like to be absolutely financially powerless.
I know what it's like to have people tell you to suck it up.
I've never been any good at behaving the way I'm supposed to.
I don't know what it's like to view every other person in the nation as my enemy.

Xenophon's picture
Submitted by Xenophon on

I don’t “view every other person in the nation as my enemy” but I realize that there are those who will take away my freedom and do harm to my family, against whom I will defend myself. Having a long historical memory of American Genocide I think it better to speak honestly now than to wait for a mountain of skulls. America is a psychopath, we are natural born killers. This nation is built on the bodies of 100 million. The continent was wiped clean of all indigenous civilization, 100 million lives, eradicated in less than 400 years for no greater reason than profit. Reed Walters is no different than the executives of Blackwater, and his police are no better than mercs. They are shooting children in the streets. The Police are Shooting Children in the streets.

How can we come to an understanding?
Where can I help?

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

and then tell me what all of us out here who aren't under that same fire -- not that we aren't under a similar fire, but we're not under the same fire you're talking about -- use effectively so we can get relief to you.

because if we can't get relief through impeachment, if we can't get relief through overturning the Congressional structure, if we can't get relief by stopping the spew of racist hatred on the "intimate media" of commuter-drive radio, if we can't get the people at levels of government ranging from county commissioners all the way up to the United States Supreme Court to understand that citizens have rights and that public servants have obligations to all their constituents, we're completely fried.

And we cannot make them understand at gunpoint, because that's the provocation they're waiting on to open the nozzles on their flamethrowers and eliminate everybody they don't consider a "peer."

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!-- Xan

chicago dyke's picture
Submitted by chicago dyke on

sit ins and sit downs and buy-nothing days and media blackouts. strikes. all that good stuff. also, occupying various HQs and gov't buildings with nonviolent protestors.

a lot of people would be arrested, some possibly even killed. a lot of people would get the skulls cracked, and abused unfairly by the authorities. it would also mean the loss of income and security for some. hardship would be due from all, in some way or another, before it would effective in the way we need.

Sarah's picture
Submitted by Sarah on

eliminating all competition for the remaining resources, when they reach the point of seeing that any sharing of resources emboldens "us" (as in those who are not part of the accepted peerage).

I don't know whether there's anything we can do, short of shooting down the TV satellites at 3 a.m. EST before the next round of NFL games starts, and feeding F911 over the airwaves like a viral video.

It may be too late for that.

We. Are. Going. To. Die. We must restore hope in the world. We must bring forth a new way of living that can sustain the world. Or else it is not just us who will die but everyone. What have we got to lose? Go forth and Fight!-- Xan

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