Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Jena 6 - March in Chicago

- Demonstrators marched Sunday in Chicago to show their support for the 'Jena 6,' the black teens accused of beating up a white classmate in mostly white Jena, Louisiana.

The demonstrators believe the teens are being treated unfairly. Prosecutors charged them with attempted murder.

The beating happened after a series of racial incidents at the school last fall. While some charges have been reduced, supporters believe they are too harsh.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson traveled to Louisiana to meet Sunday with some of the parents and lawyers involved in this case. Bill Maher also brought up the story on his show on Friday night.


Anonymous said...

How are they supposedly treated "unfairly"?? Because Jena is predominantly white? This has all been blown out of proportion because the jury was White! These black thugs were found guilty of beating a white kid senseless, and they are being treated like heroes!!?? Now, the "black community" once again separates itself from us whites by playing the race card. How typical. Why is it that blacks can beat white people, sometimes to death, and their civil rights are "violated" because they are guilty, but whenever whites even look at blacks the wrong way, they are charged with hate-crimes?? You PEOPLE, that's right, I said you PEOPLE, are nothing but RACISTS HYPOCRITES!


Anonymous said...

Funny how you are hollering about blacks beating up the white boy, but let's not forget who throw the first punch!! and hung nooses on a tree.. now who threaten who??? The more things change, the more they stay the same. Oh and YOU people need to stop putting thoses nooses of segregration on people of color necks....yeah you people. Its only to beat black folks up in Jena cause you'll only get suspended from school for one day.. how bout that???

Anonymous said...

They are definately being treated unfairly! The "Victim" was released from the hospital the same day. I know guys that have been hospitalized for days after fights, and the assaulter wasn't charged with attempted murder. The guy I know was taunting a group, and deserved to get his butt kicked. The kid in this story was taunting a group, and deserved to get his butt kicked. In my opinion, he deserved to get beat worse than he did. What did this idiot expect? And I'm White!!!

Anonymous said...

Why would you call these young black men thugs? Do you know what a thug is?

These boys got in a school boy's fight. Nothing more, nothing less. ANYONE in their position would have done the same. No one was seriously hurt. So why would they be charged with attempted murder??

Even you, a racist, know deep down in your little hateful heart that the punishment did not fit the crime. You never once made one comment about the fact that the "victim" hit one of the assailants in the head with a bottle a few days earlier. That sounds more like attempted murder! He got his ass kicked and all the whites of Jena, Louisiana should have taken it like the "big kids" that they are.

Sorry, racist, but you will not have your victory here. This time, you will lose!

Anonymous said...

First and foremost "YOU PEOPLE" is a racist phrase to begin with. By you using this phrase just goes to show how dumb you really are. You and everyone else need to come to terms with the fact that black people are not and will never be treated equal. Not now and not ever. Everytime a white person is guilty of being a racist the first thing they say is "most of my best friends are black. Keep it real you would'nt know the friendship of a black person if you were raised with them all of your life.

Anonymous said...

The bottom line for the person who made the YOU PEOPLE comment, fairness is the factor in this situation. All the kids black and white should have been discipline according to their actions. The fault falls on the school administration and the adults who have allowed such horrible things in the past and present. This is not new, people in that city have been supporting minor to major racial issues for many years. There are people of color in this day and time who are not going to tolerate unequality. We as African American people have to fight for equality on several issues. Point blank all the kids should be punish for treating each other like they are not GOD's children. Everyone blood is red. Open your heart and eyes, and stop being so dam hateful. One day a black person may save your life, and at that point you will not see color!!!!

Anonymous said...

This issue is a local one that will be handled in their community. Sadly this has become an issue for the NAACP as a means for fundraising. They will certainly be in all of the black churches with their "cause" so they can continue to support racism. Yes, they are the original discriminating organization that promotes blackness, not equality. I did not see bus after bus roll up to Duke University when a black woman accused the Lacrosse team of rape. That issue took care of itself, just as this issue should as well. We have laws that govern us all, not just a select few. When we all wake up to see that this will keep fuel in Jesse's Bus and promote a separation in race we have no chance to evolve. Those that will support this as a cause are far worse than the crime that is committed as it brings the entire black race to where it is and lower. Wake up........ This is a fundraiser........ not a racial issue.

Anonymous said...

Amazing that the White population does not get in busses and support things that do not concern them in another town.

Perhaps it is because they all have a job and know that this country has laws that govern poor conduct.

The black nation will now spin this into an ugly issue nationally and cause far more problems that it will ever solve.

Anonymous said...

I heard the jena 6 is a small gang that went around intimidating and beating on both, black and white people. There is no excuse for 6 people to beat on 1 person, especially kicking the hell out of that person when they are out cold. A little school yard fight? 6 on 1? I don't think so. I think attempted murder sounds about right.

Anonymous said...

Wow, ireally can't believe that people on this site actually think that this situation can handle it self. First, racism is already a sensitve subject and for some white kids to hang some nooses outside of a tree is HUGE because it feels as though they are trying to bring blacks back 60 years. Plus for those people who believe that getting beat up is a excuse for someone to be tried for attempted murder is a little harsh. i mean 6 to 1 is pretty bad but if he was out of the hospital the same day i don't think he was hurt too bad since he was seen at activity after leaving the hospital. and PLEASE get your facts straight before you start calling someone a thug or saying their in some gang going around beating up people. THANX!!

Anonymous said...

the Jena six thing is out of control. I dont really get it. The kids who hung the ropes should have been charged with a hate crime, BUT vigial anti justice is wrong. You can not take six of your buddies and beat one guy.. You can not take the law into your own hands. If you want a fight be a man and do a one on one at least. EVERYONE in this case is wrong but the guys who threw the punches are the only law breakers

Anonymous said...

I doubt that any action taken by the white community can ever move the black community back 60 years, they do a good enough job of that on their own. Rather than taking an activist role and raising funds to support gang violence,why not educate the race and have them rise above conduct such as this. Get an education, dress appropriately and take command of the english language so they can excel rather than continue to mark time. The NAACP should have a platform to move the race in a positive light, rather than look for excuses and funding. Rather than promoting blackness, they should promote education and excellence.

Anonymous said...

The thing that bothers me is the 'black community's' response to this case.

Those responsible for hanging the nooses should have been punished and they DID get punished. Although some claim it wasnt enough, im not sure how severe a punishment a passive act like hanging a racist symbol on a tree really warrants. is it even illegal??

in my opinion its a horrible thing to do and shows serious character flaws in the the offenders but no where near as bad as 6 dudes beating the fuck out of someone.

It should be pointed out that the nooses and the beating have no direct relation other than perhaps flaring up racial tension in general. In July 2007, U.S. Attorney Donald Washington noted that of the more than 40 statements taken regarding the assault, none mentioned the noose incident.

I agree the attempted murder charge seems excessive but really this is a hard call to make without having actually witnessed the fight personally and knowing the intensity of the attack)

That being said it isnt THAT unreasonable when one conciders what we do know about the attack based on eye-witness accounts:

On December 4, 2006 17-year-old Justin Barker, a white Jena High School student, was assaulted at school by a group of black students. According to court documents based on eyewitness testimony and the school and police investigations, someone hit Barker from behind, knocking him out, and then others began to kick and stomp him.

6 dudes kicking and stomping an unconcious person is pretty damn aggressive behavior, and in my eyes it wouldnt be that much of a stretch to say they were trying to kill him. to me the distinction would be determined on how long and how intense the beating was and if any insight could be gained into the mindset and motivation of the attackers.

sure the charge/sentance might have been bumped up due to prejudice in the courthouse/jury but its not like we're talking about someone getting 20 years for a single joint or someone getting evidence planted against them by corrupt racist cops or anything like that.

more simply put, we're not talking about innocent people getting falsly accused here. this is guilty people perhaps getting a slightly harsher punishment then their crime warrants.

To me there in lies the rub. It seems like the al sharptons, the jay-z's and naacp types want to excuse the actions of the black teens involved simply because the courts may have over-reacted (and to me its not even clear that they did, from the information available an attempted murder charge doesnt seem totally unreasonable to me, but like i said i wouldnt be able to make this call without having seen the fight myself).

were the white people who hung the nooses totally out of line? yes.

But displaying racist symbols and attacking someone physically are on two totally different levels in my opinion. the latter being far more severe. And the incidents are not even directly related, the attacks were NOT a response to the nooses and therefore dont even really come into play when determining punishment.

was the attempted murder charge totally inflated and unnecessary?

from the available information it would seem so. But this doesnt excuse those involved from anything. they SHOULD be charged and punished. beating another person unconcious is unexcusable.

how anyone of any race can stand behind these kids in good conscience is beyond me, they are violent criminals and dont deserve the support they are receiving.

you dont get a free ride just because racism was involved. Black activist types always seem to want to be seen as the victims in racially charged confrontations and in this case its simply not true.

just because racism exists doesnt mean personal accountability goes away. and guess what, racism works BOTH ways and im sure the kids who did the beating have their share of prejudice/racist attitudes towards whites.

so why isnt anyone asking that they be charged with a hate crime?? I guarntee if it was 6 whites beating up a black kid Al Sharpton and the like would be crying "HATE CRIME!" all over the media.

everyone involved in this shares a certain level of guilt and responsibilty for the incidents, no one is purely a victim or innocent here. no one here displayed any sort of redeeming behavior.

What gets me is people that want to embrace these kids and stand behind them. why would you stand up for these kids who showed such poor judgement? do they deserve 22 years for the beating? its debatable but probably not.

SURELY they deserve to be punished and fairly severely for what they did. people need to stop trying to escape personaly responsibilty and accountability by playing the damn race card.

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