Thursday, June 28, 2007

Viewer's Voice on KALB - Jena Six Reaction

From the Associated Press...

A black teenager accused of taking part in the beating of a white schoolmate at a Jena high school has been convicted of felony charges.
Seventeen-year-old Mychal Bell was found guilty of aggravated second-degree battery and conspiracy to commit aggravated second-degree battery today. Before the trial, he had faced an attempted murder charge - but the prosecutor reduced that to the charges Bell was convicted of. Bell could be sentenced to more than 20 years in prison.
Last December's attack came amid increasing racial tensions at the school. Earlier, three white students had been suspended from hanging nooses from a tree at the school.
Bell was convicted by an all-white jury. Five other teens also face charges.

And now your comments...

Debby writes...
"Many years ago two white boys killed a black boy at the fair here in the same sort of incident. They spent many years in prison for their criminal act. A boy in Texas faces the death penalty this very day for killing a young woman in a car jacking there.
The Jena 6 should thank God that someone stopped this senseless act before they killed Justin Barker and faced what these men and the young man in Texas are facing. The laws are the same for black, white, or whatever color you are.
Jena is not a racist community in the eyes of many good, hard working black people living here. Nobody interviewing looked for any of them. The media have cast us as a town of racist. How wrong you are! We are not racist, we just expect people to be responsible for their actions.
Thank God for our Judge and DA. They have stood up for justice in the face of all this adversity. If you don't stand from something, you don't stand for anything.
By the way, the black persons called for jury duty DIDN'T BOTHER TO SHOW UP."

Jeff writes...
"They will find him not guilty, because he is black. They are afraid of another Rodney King is they find him guilty. They are afraid of blacks, i wish i was on the jury, he would be guilty right away."
J.P. Stephen writes...
"All stories refer to this as A fight. No witness in court hsaid that Barker ever raised his hand. Get A life."
Fitzgerald writes...
"On your evening report you asked, "What do you think about what is happening in Jena?" My opinion to this matter is that it is about time people do something about the racism that blacks hurl toward the whites. As for myself, I am sick of hearing about how the whites mistreat the blacks and how much we owe them because their ancestors where slaves. Many times the blacks just get a slap on the hand because of the NAACP. I hope justice is served with the Jena 6 trial so maybe others will realize that no one is exempt and must pay for their actions no matter what their color might be. Laws are for EVERYONE to follow!"
Frank writes...
"I lived in the Jena area for awhile..the whites and blacks do not mix... not even at the Christmas Parade.Whites one area ,blacks another area..Certain areas in Lasalle have KKK painted in public places. I don"t know about the Jena 6 case at all.. but I know there is alot of prejudice in the Jena area.. and not just for Blacks but for anyone not born in that area. You are considered an outsider and not easily accepted in that region."
Natasia writes...
"I feel that the charges these young men are receiving are very unfair and unjust. If anything they should have only received simple battery charges. For the record, I am a Caucasian female and a social worker. No matter what color the boys are, the charges are completely ridiculous. These are teenagers and the law is trying to ruin the rest of their lives by giving them such a huge sentence. The unGodly part of it all is the racism involved. The victim is white, the Jena 6 are black, and the entire jury is white. Just remember that we all must account for ourselves on judgement day. What would God say to this. What they did was wrong, but I wish there were something that I could do to fight for the Jena 6. I am sure the victim probably said some things that he should not have said also."
Sarah writes...
"The trial is over. Thank goodness! Actually the only racism I witnessed was all the reporters sitting on the "accused's " side of the courtroom. It was pretty obvious what the slant on the story is going to be. I hope you people find some news to report after this and leave Jena alone. No, actually, I hope you don't find any. You are not really reporters. You should work for The National Enquirer. It would be a step up for you. You are no more to be believed that the "supermarket rags"."

12 comments:

blogger said...

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Krystal said...

Well first off this was a horrible event that took place, but the fact of the matter is that all the comments about the jury being white has nothing to do with it and if people want to say it does, it is because none of the black people that were supenad went. So they have no one to blame. I think that it is appropriate to say that these were not Grammar School kids they were 17 year olds that obviously show that they were completely aware of what they were doing and why they did it and should have to take full responsibility for their actions.
And as far as this being a racial issue, if it wasn't a racial issue then what did the white kid do to be treated like so. If they felt like jumping someone why wasn't the vicim black. My point is that this was a terrible thing and let the ones who commited it be prosecuted. And as far as their lives being ruied the attackers should have thought about the consequenses before they commited this terrible act.

CRYSTAL said...

I THINK THAT THE JENA 6 TRIAL HAS BEEN CARRIED WAY TO FAR. I AM A WHITE FEMALE WHO IS FOR EQUAL JUSTICE AND THE CHARGES ARE TO STIFF FOR THE 6 YOUNG MEN. EVEN THOUGH THEY SHOULD BE PUNISHED I DON'T THINK IT SHOULD BE THAT EXTREME. AS FAR AS RACIST IS CONCERNED, I AM ARE NOT RACIST.I HAVE TO WORK WITH EVERY RACE AND LIVE IN THE SAME TOWN WITH EVERY RACE AND ALL OF OUR CHILDREN HAVE TO GO TO PUBLIC SCHOOLS TOGETHER. I AM LIKE MR RISER SAID WE HAVE TO LOOK BEYOND COLOR. WE ARE ALL MADE EQUAL AND I PRAY TO GOD THAT ALL OF THESE FAMILIES WOULD FIND PEACE.

Anonymous said...

I agree with one of the bloggers that said Jena is very prejudice. I lived in Jena for some years and the heightened racial tensions would come in cycles, but the racism is always present. I went to school with some great people in Jena, but like myself, most of those people (black and white) no longer live there.
What happened in Jena was not any different than some of the fights in school twenty years ago. The difference is the media focused so much on the noose incident that the rest just escalated from there. As a parent, I feel for both sides of this battle, because the seven young men's lives will never be the same.
What about the attorneys? There are rumors that the DA (Mr. Walters) is going to make a run for judge...is he trying to further his political agenda? Mr. Bell's attorney (Mr. Williams)...what was he thinking? A black boy facing charges against a white boy and an all white jury. Did he really think this would be a fair trial...IN JENA???

Anonymous said...

I think the trail of the "jena 6" should have never took place. In my opinion this is all stupid. I am from LaSalle I tend to hang out in Jena and I know how it is. Racism is a big issue here. You go out to a place town past jena and there is KKK written everywheres. In LaSalle there are places black people are surly not welcome and it is crazy. Bell shouldn't have gotten what he got. It would be a whole didn't story if Justin Barker would have had serve problems was in the hospital longer.. He wasn't the night he was almost "killed" by the "jena 6" he was up and making appearances all over Jena..That boy wasn't hurt that bad.. He got in a fight and lost big deal.. I have been in a unfair fight and I had a blackeye and I didn't run to the cops saying they treid to kill me.. Justin Barker is full of BS.. My aunt is close to the bell family and the reason why he didn't take the plead barrign was because it was his only ticket out of LaSalle Parish.. They didn't want him to play sports anymore for the rest of his life and his mome said Hell no i am not signing that.. If the "jena 6" was a bunch of redneck white boys and the victm was a black boy this would have been a simple case of teenager boys acting out it would never reach the system. My aunts black friend is a health nurse who was going to a patients house in flatwood and a bunch of white boys attacked her she called the cops. Guess what???? Nothing happen she was black.. If a white women was driving through a town and a bunch of black boys attacked her they would be sitting in jail.. Mychal Bell was not given a fair trail...

Anonymous said...

I grew up in LaSalle Parish and I have followed this about the jena six and I knew what was going to happen. It has always been this way for blacks and poor whites.And it will stay this way until someone higher listen and stops it.By the way I AM WHITE.THAT DOES NOT MAKE IT RIGHT.IT IS WRONG TO RUIN THESE YOUNG MEN LIVES OVER WHAT THE WHITES STARTED.

Anonymous said...

This event is a wake up call to the Jena community, the United States, and the world. At the root of this event is "RACISIM". Black people being racist and white people being racist. If I can fault anyone I would have to fault the community itself, black and white. Racisim is passed on from generation to generation. It is the elders in the community whom are at fault. They have not taught their childrent how to deal with racist people and racist acts. I am black. I have heard black people say, "If a white man calls me a 'N.....'I'll beat his 'a..". This is the wrong attitude to have. This attitude has been pasted down to black youth and was displayed at Jena high school during this fight. Parents have the power to eliminate racisim. Stop teaching children to dislike those with different skin colors. Teach your children to love those that do not love them. Teach your kids how to walk away. Al lot of people talk the talk but fail to walk the walk when it comes to racisim.
How in the world can black in the Jena community not show up for jury duty. Blacks were quick to voice their opinions after the verdict was given. Blacks in Jena and the rest of the US must participate in their community and governments. This case should show black people the necessity for this participation.I am truly dissappointed in the Black elders in the Jena community to allow their children to be rasied with improper attitudes towards whites and for not making a difference in their community. It's never too late to change. God is providing the example and motivation for change with this event. As much as Black people want to cry "racisim", Black people need to examine racisim closer. Whites planted the seeds of racisims. Those seeds have grown in both the black and white communities and are deeply rooted in the Jena community and the US. Black people are just as racist as white people. I get the feeling that Black people think that it's OK to be racist against white people.
It was wrong for any of those kids to be fighting at school. The bottom line is that a fight at school does not equal to attempted murder. The Jena city council, mayor, and elected community officials should have taken Jena's district attorney and kicked him out of town. These ludacris charges now make the town of Jena appear to be the "Old South Racist Capital of the World". The charges do not fit the crime. The victims injuries are not consistent with a murder attempt. If the "Jena 6" intended to kill the victim, what stopped them from doing so?

John
Pineville

Anonymous said...

If there had been someone with a camera videoing this fight we could all see how brutal the attack was and it would all be clear. If Rodney King had not had been videoed everyone would have just had to believe what the attackers wanted to say about it. After all who is going to believe one person over many. Same thing in this case. Naturally after you realize you have ben caught commiting a crime, you will make up anything you can to justify what you have done. The jail is full of people who made bad decisions and wish they could take it back. These boys had made there mind up to beat a white person up that day and had attempted to jump on another boy in the gym minutes before and one of the six said no lets not do this in here. They walked outside and aattacked Barker. i believe they were trying to live the thug lifestyle we all see everyday on tv from the rappers andd gang members who glorify it.

If Jena was as racist as the media would like to believe it is, there would have been severe retaliation for this beating. I also drive around this area all the time and I have never saw KKK written anywhere. Truth is there are good black people and good white people, and also bad of each.Racism means big business for the media after all allstar games and family reunions dont sell newspapers or up ratings. I still havent undestood why none of the summoned black jurors showed up to court dont they realize that in itself is a crime. How do you think Bell felt when all he saw was whites being called and there were no blacks there to try to defend him. I guess something backfired on whoever advised them of that.

Steve said...

It would have been nice if you had researched the number of black residents who were summoned for jury duty but didn't bother to show up. You do know it's a crime to fail to appear for jury duty when summoned? It would have been nice if you had not driven home the subtle fact that it was an all white jury who convicted a criminal of a severe beating of another citizen of Jena. I wonder if the victim of the beating had also been black would you even have bothered to write a story at all. I wonder if 6 white boys had beat into unconsciousness another white boy would there be the problems we're seeing there now. Ask yourself this question; "when this kind of crime is committed do we just let it go?", as some of the protesters in Jena are advocating now.

This whole situation has gotten so far out of control and I blame the media and everyone concerned for it and you must share the blame in your much too one-sided account of the matter.

Truth said...

This whole situation (Jena 6) is tied to a long line of events at Jena High School. 1) When the schools outer doors were super glued by students they received a slap on the wrist. They should have been punished. NOT given hall cleaning duties which they took with a playful attitude and displayed no remorse in front of the entire school body- faculty and staff. They performed their cleaning duties with a playful and laughing manner. 2) When the noose incident took place, the students involved were also given pats on the wrists. Sure, everyone likes to say that is was a harmful prank. Why did the prank occur one day after questions by blacks about sitting under the tree? The timing suggests that it was intended to be a message to blacks. If Debra Ainsworth wants to suggest that it was a harmful sports related prank, why was it not carried out on a Friday for the pep rally when these types of pranks usually occur? The timing suggests that it isn’t or wasn’t a sports related prank. These students were suspended and attended LaSalle Parish Alternative School. There they received special privileges where they were allowed to leave daily and attend welding classes at Rod Brady. 3) The school has burned and there are supposedly no leads. What about Wayne Spence’s lap top? Has this used been used as a tool in the investigation? 4) And finally the matter at hand . . . the Jena 6 / Justin Barker situation.
Did he truly make racial slurs that initiated this fight? School Administration or law enforcement has not investigated this notion thoroughly. Too many black students report the racial slurs. Why haven’t they been reported. As far as the fight, it happened so quickly that I don’t believe that all the facts or participants are readily identifiable. Another fact that is not mentioned, the school superintendent was standing within in a few feet of the whole incident. Yet and still-Where is his leadership? Why hasn’t he been called for testimony? Barker attended the ring ceremony that same evening at First Baptist Church and was back in school immediately. Was he really that hurt? Now the D.A. is trying to stick these 6 black kids with serious charges (conspiracy to commit murder). These charges are usually brought when a person is in a comma and intensive care for days. Justin was NOT.
The lock incident was a serious offense- no charges were brought. The noose incident was a serious offense ( it can also be classified as a hate or race crime ) – no charges were brought. WHY allow white students to be slapped on the wrist- and black kids to be charged with major offenses that can land them in jail for a long time? Let’s take it a step further- Justin Barker possessed a fire arm. He has been suspended- but where are the charges for having the gun on a school campus which is violation of state law? When you look at the whole picture – blacks should to be out raged and upset. When a fight occurs at Jena High School involving blacks- they are escorted off school property in hand cuff by law enforcement. One has yet to see a white escorted off school property in hand cuffs. If is has occurred, no black students has seen it or reported it. I hope that the black community will ask for investigations by the U.S. Justice Department, FBI Civil Rights Commission, U.S. Department of Education, and the Louisiana State Attorney General’s Office. Every facet of the LaSalle Parish School System, and other public offices should be thoroughly investigated. If blacks push the issue, the public funded privates schools in the parish should be closed. The racial injustices will also cease.

Anonymous said...

The real injustice has just occurred and the real victims are the citizens of lasalle parish. THe defendant will definitely appeal the decision based solely on the fact that an all white jury handed the verdict and they will win the appeal. So you will have a new trial, possibly a change of venue, another appeal if the defendant is found guilty, and the rest as they say will cost the taxpayers a ton of money for a fight amongst teenagers at school. Twenty years ago, the kids would have been paddled by the principle and sent back to class. Wake up america.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I guess at times one should read what folks are saying. Obviously, "truth" is in the know! It appears that HE has inside information on a lot of things at Jena High, but wait does he?

Did the boys that hung the nooses receive more punishment than was published or made public? Did the boys that "super glued" the doors of the school also receive more punishment than was publicized? The answer, yes, they did! "Truth" I suggest that you research that a bit more. Maybe you will be able to uncover the full story about those events.

I am not sure why Debra Ainsworth was singled out in your comment. Is that because she was interviewed by Channel 5 and answered a question she was asked? Were you aware that Ms. Ainsworth was very upset with the editing that was made to the footage. If you were to speak with Ms. Ainsworth, she would tell you that the question that she was responding too was "what did YOU think when you heard about the nooses?" She would also tell you that she had spoken with Michelle Goddard, News Director Channel 5, and voiced her feelings about the edited footage. Just ask her the next time that you see her. I'm sure she will be more than happy to answer truthfully.