Monday, May 15, 2006
Everyone is wondering what happened on that faithful night on March 13, 2006, in that house on 610 N. Buchanan Street. One of those notable moments in American life, when race, sex, poverty, and wealth, all intersect to create a one for the ages media circus and fodder for the water coolers. Well, actually not everyone, because a lot of people --dependng on their race or political persuasion- have already made up their minds about what happened that night. For that reason alone, I have tried to stay away from this issue at least until it went to trial, or more facts came out. But I have bit my toungue long enough, and although I am still reserving judgment about guilt or innocence, there are many aspects of this case that has compelled me to say something.
First, let me say for the record, that I am one of those black folks who thinks O.J. killed Nicole, and therefore his black ass should not be walking around as a free man. Having said that, I also think that Kobe was innocent and Mike Tyson was set up. So there, I put my cards on the table as to what I think of the justice system in some of these high profile cases. Now in this case, I really don't care about guilt or innocence as much as I care about all the happenings sorrounding it. Well actually, that might not be so true. I do care about guilt or innocence, in that I care if innocent lives are being destroyed because of a lie, or if a bunch of rapist walk free because of their privilege and wealth. I guess what I am trying to say is that this toxic mix that I mentioned earlier, has made for an interesting study of human behavior, prejudices, and stereotypes. It has exposed raw emotions on both sides, and revealed people's true feelings about race and class.
For instance, the wall to wall coverage on FAUX news and the insistence by most of the hosts on that network that the youg men are not guilty.---I actually heard one commentator say that he is friends with one of the boy's parents and thus, couldn't really comment. Then he went into a long loquacious diatribe about how cruel District Attorney Mike Nifong was. The conservative blogs are even worse, and in their minds, given the accusers background, race, and income level she has to be lying. -Rush Limbaugh called the accuser a "ho" for crying out loud- And Mark Fuhrman of all people,- that self acknowledged racist who has been given new life by FAUX News- has even weighed in on this issue; proclaiming that the poor boys are innocent. Now the other side is not much better. Jessie Jackson went as far as to offer the accuser a college scholarship. Nothing wrong with that, but shouldn't he have waited? I mean what if she is lying, is this the type of young lady that Operation PUSH wants to sponsor and be associated with? An individual who just destroyed the lives of forty seven young men? I would hope not; because if she is knowingly lying, she doesn't deserve a college scholarship, she deserves a jail cell. I have even heard some black pundits get caught up with the fact that some in the news media are calling her a "black stripper." Well yeah, that's what she was doing when all this took place; stripping. So sorry, that doesn't bother me like say, the media calling Katrina evacuees refugees. Now that bothered me. I was also bothered by the Democratic District Attorney holding a news conference and declaring guilt from the very outset; the fact that he was in a political race made it even worse, and reeked of opportunism.
But then some of the players in this lamentable tragedy have come up fairly large . Duke University, never one of my favorite institutions ---maybe it's the name, I lived in Louisiana when a certain Republican by the name of David ran for President--- made all the right moves. Firing the Lacrosse coach, suspending the season, and launching an in house investigation. They even reached out to Durham's African American mayor and the black community. Good for them, but it doesn't change the fact that Duke is a bastion of privilege and wealth in the middle of tobacco road. And just across the railroad tracks are people who could only dream of ever having that type of access or opulents. So there is a built in resentment among the populace against Duke, and that has hurt them from the very beginning in certain sectors, both from a public relations and a credibility standpoint.
Just today, District Attorney Nifong indicted yet another player (the third) and declared that there will be no more. That player, David Evans, who the media referred to as "clean cut" (I am bald does that make me clean cut? Mmmm) gave a brief press conference before he was arrested on rape, kidnapping, and various other charges. In his statement Evans said: "I am innocent." He called the accusations "fantastic lies," and went on to say; "I look forward to watching them [the lies] unravel in the days to come." Then he closed with this: "I am innocent, Reade Seligman is innocent, and Collin Finnerty is innocent."
Yeah David, but America isn't so innocent now is it? Your lawyer, Joseph Chesire, said "this is one of the saddest days for justice in the state of North Carolina." It might be counselor, but it will have a long way to go before it can compare to another faithful day in 1900; when a poor African American named Avery Mills, was lynched for killing Mills H. Hack--- a state legislator-- in self defense in Rutherford County. Now that was a sad day, at least these boys will get a trial, that's something poor old Avery did not have the luxury of requesting.
Posted by field negro at 9:08 PM