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I am in a place where execution can only destroy your

physical form but because of my faith in God,

my family and all of you I have been spiritually free

for some time and no matter what happens in the days,

weeks to come, this Movement to end the death

penalty, to seek true justice, to expose a system that fails

to protect the innocent must be accelerated.

 

 

Dedication to Human Rights and Human Kindness

Message from Troy Anthony Davis

 

 

10 September 2011

To All:

I want to thank all of you for your efforts and dedication to Human Rights and Human Kindness, in the past year I have experienced such emotion, joy, sadness and never ending faith. It is because of all of you that I am alive today, as I look at my sister Martina I am marveled by the love she has for me and of course I worry about her and her health, but as she tells me she is the eldest and she will not back down from this fight to save my life and prove to the world that I am innocent of this terrible crime.

As I look at my mail from across the globe, from places I have never ever dreamed I would know about and people speaking languages and expressing cultures and religions I could only hope to one day see first hand. I am humbled by the emotion that fills my heart with overwhelming, overflowing Joy. I can’t even explain the insurgence of emotion I feel when I try to express the strength I draw from you all, it compounds my faith and it shows me yet again that this is not a case about the death penalty, this is not a case about Troy Davis, this is a case about Justice and the Human Spirit to see Justice prevail.

I cannot answer all of your letters but I do read them all, I cannot see you all but I can imagine your faces, I cannot hear you speak but your letters take me to the far reaches of the world, I cannot touch you physically but I feel your warmth everyday I exist.

So Thank you and remember I am in a place where execution can only destroy your physical form but because of my faith in God, my family and all of you I have been spiritually free for some time and no matter what happens in the days, weeks to come, this Movement to end the death penalty, to seek true justice, to expose a system that fails to protect the innocent must be accelerated. There are so many more Troy Davis’. This fight to end the death penalty is not won or lost through me but through our strength to move forward and save every innocent person in captivity around the globe. We need to dismantle this Unjust system city by city, state by state and country by country.

I can’t wait to Stand with you, no matter if that is in physical or spiritual form, I will one day be announcing, “I AM TROY DAVIS, and I AM FREE!”

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Troy was found guilty of murdering a police officer 19 years ago, based upon the testimony of 9 witnesses. Today, 7 of those 9 have recanted their testimony entirely, and there are enormous problems with the testimony of the remaining 2 witness accounts. There is NO OTHER EVIDENCE. The murder weapon was never found. There is no DNA to test. Troy is scheduled to die by lethal injection on September 21, 2011.

Source: RedAntliberationArmy

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Why Are We Killing Troy Davis?
By Kevin Powell


To take a life when a life has been lost is revenge, not justice.—Desmond Tutu



Unless something God-like and miraculous happens, Troy Davis, 42, is going to be executed tomorrow, Wednesday, September 21, 2011, at 7pm, by lethal injection at a state prison in Jackson, Georgia.

Let me say up front I feel great sorrow for the family of Mark MacPhail, the police officer who was shot and murdered on August 19, 1989. I cannot imagine the profound pain they've shouldered for 22 angst-filled years, hoping, waiting, and praying for some semblance of justice. Officer MacPhail will never come back to life, his wife, his two children, and his mother will never see him again. Under that sort of emotional and spiritual duress, I can imagine why they are convinced Troy Davis is the murderer of their beloved son, husband, and father.

But, likewise, I feel great sorrow for Troy Davis and his family. I don't know if Mr. Davis murdered Officer MacPhail or not. What I do know is that there is no DNA evidence linking him to the crime, that seven of nine witnesses have either recanted or contradicted their original testimonies tying him to the act, and that a gentleman named Sylvester "Redd" Coles is widely believed to be the actual triggerman. But no real case against Mr. Coles has ever been pursued.

So a man is going to be executed, murdered, in fact, under a dark cloud of doubt in a nation, ours, that has come to practice executions as effortlessly as we breath.

Be it Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry, governor of Texas, and the 234 executions that have occurred under his watch (that fact was cheered loudly at a recent Republican debate), or the 152 executions when George W. Bush was governor of that state, we are a nation of an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a life for a life. Spiraling so far out of control that we are going to execute someone who may actually be innocent tomorrow.

I say we because the blood of Officer MacPhail and Troy Davis will be on the hands of us all. We Americans who fail to use our individual and collective voices to deal with the ugliness in our society that leads to violence in the first place, be they for economic crimes or because some of us have simply been driven mad by the pressures of trying to exist in a world that often marginalizes or rejects us. Thus our solution for many problems often becomes force, or violence. But it has long since been proven that the death penalty or capital punishment is not a deterrent, contrary to some folks' beliefs. Murders continue to happen every single day in America, as commonplace as apple pie, football, and Ford trucks.

photo left: Troy Davis at his high school graduation

I also say we because it is startling to me that Troy Davis could be on death row for twenty years, have his guilt be under tremendous doubt, yet save a few dedicated souls and organizations, there has not been a mass movement of support to save his life, to end the death penalty, not by well-meaning Black folks, not by well-meaning White folks, not by well-meaning folks of any stripe, and certainly not by influential Black folks who represent the corridors of power in places like Atlanta, with the exception of, say, Congressman John Lewis.


You wonder what the outcome of the parole board decision would have been if Black churches in Atlanta and other parts of Georgia, for example, had joined this cause to end the death penalty in America years back, if Black leaders had launched a sustained action much in the way their religious and spiritual foremothers and forefathers had done two generations before?

What could have been different if more Georgia ministers had the courage of Atlanta's Rev. Dr. Raphael Gamaliel Warnock, pastor of the famed Ebenezer Baptist Church once helmed by Dr. King? Dr. Warnock has been steadfast and outspoken, yet seemingly out there alone in his support of Troy Davis. I mean if there is ever a time for Black churches to practice a relevant ministry, as Dr. King once urged, is it not when a seeming injustice like the Troy Davis matter is right in front of our faces? When so many Black males are locked up in America's prisons? What is the point, really, of having a "men's ministry" at your church if it is not addressing one of the major problems of the 21st century, that of the Black male behind bars? Especially in a society, America, that incarcerates more people than any other nation on earth.

And you wonder how the five-person Georgia State Board of Pardons and Parole that, paradoxically, includes two Black males, including the head of the board, must feel. Had it not been for past legal injustices, like the Scottsboro Boys case of the 1930s or the vicious killing of Emmett Till in the 1950s, there would not have been a Civil Rights Movement, nor the placement of Blacks in places to balance the scales of justice, like that Georgia Parole Board. While I certainly do not think any Black person should get a pass just because they are Black, I do think, if you are an aware Black man, somewhere in your psyche has to be some residual memory of Black males being lynched in America, of Black male after Black male being sent to jail, or given the death penalty, under often flimsy charges and evidence. If there is a reasonable doubt, keep the case open until there is ultimate certainty-

Finally, incredibly ironic and tragic that this is happening while our first Black president is sitting in the White House. We, America, like to pat ourselves on the back and say job well done whenever there is a shred of racial or social progress in our fair nation. But then we habitually figure out ways to take one, two, several steps back, with this Troy Davis execution, with the rise of the Tea Party and its thinly-veiled racial paranoia politics, to push America right back to the good old says of segregation, Jim Crow, brute hatred of those who are different, while social inequalities run rampant like rats in the night.

And if you think Troy Davis' cause celebre has nothing to do with Jim Crow, then either you've not been to an American prison lately, or you simply are blind. I've been to many, across our country, and they are filled to the brim with mostly Black and Latino males (and some poor White males), including the majority of folks sitting on death row.

For sure, given my background of poverty, a single mother, an absent father, and violence and great economic despair in my childhood and teen years, but for the grace of God I could be one of those young Black or Latino males languishing in jail at this very moment. I could be, indeed, Troy Davis.

So I cannot simply view the Troy Davis case and execution as solely about the killing of Officer MacPhail. Yes, an injustice was done, a killing occurred, and I pray the truth really comes out one day.

But I am just as concerned about America's soul, of the morality tales we are text-messaging to ourselves, to the world, as we move Troy Davis from his cell one last time, to that room where a needle will blast death into his veins, suck the air from his throat, snatch life from his eyes.

While the family of Mr. Davis and the family of Officer MacPhail converge, one final time, to witness a death in progress. Now two men will be dead, Officer MacPhail and Troy Davis, linked, forever, by the misfortune of our confusion, stereotypes, finger-pointing, and history of passing judgment without having every shred of the facts. I am Officer MacPhail, I am Troy Davis, and so are you. And you. And you, too.

And as my mother would say, have mercy on us all, Lawd, for we know not what we do.


Kevin Powell is an activist and public speaker based in Brooklyn, New York. A nationally acclaimed writer, Kevin is also the author or editor of 10 books. His 11th, Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan, and The Ghost of Dr. King: And Other Blogs and Essays, will be published January 2012. Email him at kevin_powell, or follow him on Twitter @kevin_powell

Source: NewBlackMan

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Other Responses

Last night, the state of Georgia put to death an innocent man--Troy Anthony Davis. I agree with Ben Jealous of the NAACP that "In death he will live on as a symbol of a broken justice system that kills an innocent man while a murderer walks free." Hopefully, his death with lead to the end of the barbaric death penalty in this county.— Miriam Decosta-Willis

Troy Anthony Davis was killed by lethal injection by the state of Georgia last night. But people around the U.S. and the world are outraged that the execution took place, despite widespread doubts about Davis’ guilt. We were the only news outlet continuously broadcasting live from the prison grounds yesterday where hundreds of people held an all-day vigil. Today, we hear their voices and ask: did Georgia kill an innocent man?—Democracy Now!

Troy Davis wasn’t the only prisoner executed in the United States tonight, White supremacist Lawrence Russell was also put to death.Texas officials executed Russell using lethal injection following his conviction for brutally killing James Byrd Jr in 1998. Unlike Davis who received various requests for a reprieve there was no doubt that Russell was involved in his victims murder. Russell and two other white supremacists tied James Byrd Jr. to the back of a pickup truck and dragged him down an asphalt road for nearly three miles, swerving the entire time until he was dead.—Inquisitr

the purpose of public lynchings of black people were: to punish us (oftentimes for no wrongdoing), to terrorize us, to send a clear message to black witnesses that this is what happens if you "act out of place," and to make us shrink in fear. Sometimes lynchers made black people help carry out lynchings. It was also an opportunity for the lynchers and lynch mob to bond, celebrate, and reassure themselves of their white superiority. We cannot allow anyone make us a fearful people, nor cower to white supremacy, nor acquiesce to their deep-seeded insecurities.—Byron Hurt

World shocked by U.S. execution of Troy Davis—Troy Davis may be dead, but his execution Thursday in the American state of Georgia has made him the poster boy for the global movement to end the death penalty.—CNN

Thank God, I don't have to teach today. I woke up feeling bereaved, as if one of my blood brothers had been publicly murdered by everyone. I had to tell myself not to be angry, not to cry, not to worry because despite the horribly organized murder yesterday, somehow, we won. We told Georgia and all those judges who refused to listen to reason that it is still wrong to kill another human being even if it is a state organized killing. I am down, but the sun is rising. I believe in the future.—Patricia Jabbeh Wesley

‎"After halting his execution in a last minute reprieve on Wednesday night, the Supreme Court of the United States refused to consider Troy Davis's request for a stay of execution." He was murdered by the state of Georgia, a little after 11 pm, Wednesday night.—Jean Blount


America Prison System is a 37 Billion Dollar Business. The United States has 5 percent of the world's population and 25 percent of the world's incarcerated population. We rank first in the world in locking up our fellow citizens.—Amie Ayira

‎|We press ahead on opposition to the death penalty and our culture of revenge and killing. Troy’s death is tragic. But this country, not just its individual states, kills every day: In Iraq, Afghanistan and many other places around the world. We grieve for Troy as we grieve for the anonymous souls killed by drones or U.S. and NATO bombs or assassination teams. We have to find a way to stop all this killing.—Kevin Gray

It is important to contextualize the state of Georgia’s execution of Troy Davis within a history of southern racism where for more than four hundred years White men used vigilante and state violence to execute or lynch Black men. Southern Whites have worked overtime for 40 years through the legal system and ideological lies about Black men to cover the truth of murder as means of social control that breaks our spirits and our will to resist.—Ruby Sales

Next time you hear Obama or this Govt. talk about human rights, remind them of the barbarity of what happened yesterday to Lawrence Brewer and Troy Davis. How they were strapped down and given lethal doses, an outrage many complain about for lab rats. The slow torture of the death penalty meets the test of cruel and unusual. If we kill captured enemies on the battle field that's an international crime.— Kenneth Carroll

Someone asked- What do we tell our sons? I was optimistically enthused when I was preparing for bed and said to my son- Troy Davis is still alive! He shook his head and said it's just a joke. When I went to chastise him for his cynical attitude he spoke to me in a very strong, matter of fact way. He said it is a joke and he did not believe Davis would survive and if he did he would probably have to remain in prison. When I pointed out the world coming together to protest this injustice- he said ma, I am only 23 years old and have witnessed a president steal an election and run this country into the ground and now determined to lay it all on Obama and make sure he loses the next one no matter what it will cost the country. I have personally witnessed black men shot, killed, arrested, brutalized by the police in our neighborhood, so today it's Davis, yesterday it was Diallo,a man at his bachelor party, another on on his way to deliver his unborn child, who or what will it be tomorrow? I tried to assure him the world knowig the circumstances was a good thing. He repeated ma this country does what it wants no matter whose watching. I tried to assure him again as I went to bed knowing Davis was alive. When I woke to the news of Davis's death. All I could do was hug my son and cry. What do We tell our sons indeed!!!!!!—Omilana Horge


Jimmy Carter on Troy Davis' execution: "...if one of our fellow citizens can be executed with so much doubt surrounding his guilt, then the death penalty system in our country is unjust and outdated."—Patricia Jabbeh Wesley

Thought for the Day. 11.08pm Eastern Standard Time. September 21st. Strange fruit. Time stood still as the United States of Lethal Injections, injected injustice into the bones of a man whose case revealed the flaws of a system whose back was turned despite the evidence that screamed reasonable doubt. What will you say when they ask you what were you doing 11.08pm Eastern standard time, Wednesday September 21st?—Esther Armah

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Do Many Possibly-Innocent Men Await Davis' Fate?—September 22, 2011—African-Americans account for 40 percent of the people who have been executed this year by state governments, though they represent only about 12 percent of the total U.S. population . . . The death of Troy Davis, the Georgia man who was executed by lethal injection late Wednesday following three stays of execution, marked the 14th time this year a black man has been put to death in America by a state government. In that same time, 19 whites have been executed, including Lawrence Brewer, who died earlier Wednesday for dragging a black man, James Byrd Jr., to his death in 1998. . . .

According to the New York-based Innocence Project, which works to free convicts who are unjustly imprisoned, there have been 273 post-conviction exonerations from death sentences or life without parole. In the state of Texas alone, 12 people have been exonerated from death row. Gov. Rick Perry has authorized 234 executions during his tenure. The state has the second highest death row population, surpassed only by California.

A closer look at the numbers show deep disparity in death row demographics. In Louisiana, for example, a state where only 31 percent of the residents are black, blacks account for 65 percent of the death row population. And in Georgia, the place where Troy Davis was killed on Wednesday, blacks make up 30 percent of the state population and 67 percent of the population on death row.—BlackAmericaWeb

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Death Penalty and Race—Race of Homicide Victims in Cases Resulting in an Execution since 1976—A report sponsored by the American Bar Association in 2007 concluded that one-third of African-American death row inmates in Philadelphia would have received sentences of life imprisonment if they had not been African-American.—A January 2003 study released by the University of Maryland concluded that race and geography are major factors in death penalty decisions. Specifically, prosecutors are more likely to seek a death sentence when the race of the victim is white and are less likely to seek a death sentence when the victim is African-American.—A 2007 study of death sentences in Connecticut conducted by Yale University School of Law revealed that African-American defendants receive the death penalty at three times the rate of white defendants in cases where the victims are white. In addition, killers of white victims are treated more severely than people who kill minorities, when it comes to deciding what charges to bring.—AmnestyUSA

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The Killing of Troy Davis—For years Democratic politicians, whose party once opposed the death penalty, have embraced it as a suitable punishment for the “worst of the worst.” President Bill Clinton, who famously attended the execution of a mentally disabled man while on the campaign trail in 1992, went on to sign the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, which greased the wheels of this death machinery by curtailing prisoners’ rights to appeal their sentences. Former Georgia Republican Bob Barr, who helped write that law ostensibly to curb “abusive delays in capital cases,” has since decried its effect—specifically that it has prevented “claims of actual innocence like Troy Davis’s” from being heard in court.

In practice, any support for the death penalty (or attempts to perfect it) amount to an acceptance of a vicious system that cannot be separated from Rick Perry’s Texas—and which is, in fact, exemplified by it. It’s a system that thrives on racism, that condemns the innocent to die. There will not be justice for Troy Davis. But his case has reawakened Americans to a relic of injustice that must be abolished once and for all.—TheNation

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Killer spared from death hours before execution—May 22, 2008—The parole board in the state of Georgia spared a convicted killer from execution hours before he was due to die by lethal injection on Thursday and commuted his sentence to life in prison. The Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles made its decision less than three hours before Samuel David Crowe, 47, was to be executed, according to a spokeswoman for the state's prisons. "After careful and exhaustive consideration of the requests, the board voted to grant clemency. The board voted to commute the sentence to life without parole," the parole board said. Crowe's death would have marked the third execution since the U.S. Supreme Court lifted an unofficial moratorium on the death penalty last month. . . .  In March 1988, Crowe killed store manager Joseph Pala during a robbery at the lumber company in Douglas County, west of Atlanta. Crowe, who had previously worked at the store, shot Pala three times with a pistol, beat him with a crowbar and a pot of paint. Crowe pleaded guilty to armed robbery and murder and was sentenced to death the following year.—Reuters

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World Shocked by U.S. Execution of Troy Davis—by Peter Wilkinson— September 22, 2011—The execution sparked angry reactions and protests in European capitals -- as well as outrage on social media. "We strongly deplore that the numerous appeals for clemency were not heeded," the French foreign ministry said.

"There are still serious doubts about his guilt," said Germany's junior minister for human rights Markus Loening. "An execution is irreversible—a judicial error can never be repaired." The European Union expressed "deep regret" over the execution and repeated its call for a universal moratorium on capital punishment. EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said the bloc had learnt "with deep regret that Mr Troy Davis was executed," her spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic told Agence-France Presse.

'"The EU opposes the use of capital punishment in all circumstances and calls for a universal moratorium," she said. "The abolition of that penalty is essential to protect human dignity."

Amnesty International condemned the execution in a statement. "The U.S. justice system was shaken to its core as Georgia executed a person who may well be innocent. Killing a man under this enormous cloud of doubt is horrific and amounts to a catastrophic failure of the justice system," Amnesty said. In Britain's Guardian newspaper, Ed Jackson, reporting from Jackson, Georgia, before the execution took place, gave 10 reasons why he believed the death sentence for "a man who is very possibly innocent" should be commuted.—CommonDreams

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The Night They Killed Troy Davis—by William Jelani Cobb—Sep 22 2011—The feeling, as I stood in front of the truck stop in the middle of the night, was that we were witness to a great evil—not solely the taking of what may well have been an innocent life, but also in the false certainty that sought to sell this killing as justice. When word came at 11:08 p.m. that Troy Davis was no more, women began wailing; several of them fell to the ground heaving inconsolably. A few men offered stumbling, meandering prayers that some good might come of this, that it would inspire some greater reckoning with the arbitrary, corrupted realities of capital punishment in this country. 

And I, at that point, thought about my father, a native of Hazlehurst, Georgia who had abandoned his home state for New York in 1941. He lived the remainder of his life there, firm in his belief that a black man's life was seen as worthless in Georgia. I grew up hearing the stories of the sadistic violence that was commonplace there, about a black woman he'd known growing up who was raped and tortured by white men who went unpunished. I moved to Georgia in 2001, secure in my belief that the place had changed, that our efforts had yielded success and the stories my father told me were now consigned to the horror closets of history. But last night, progress, hopes and a black presidency be damned, the state of Georgia had the last word. And they were determined to prove the old man right.—TheAtlantic

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In Europe, a Chorus of Outrage Over a U.S. Execution—By Scott Sayare—September 22, 2011—Hundreds of protesters had gathered outside the American Embassies in London and Paris on Wednesday to call for a stay of execution. The European Union had repeatedly urged the same, given what Catherine Ashton, the bloc’s foreign policy chief, called the “serious and compelling doubts” about Mr. Davis’s guilt.

“The E.U. opposes the use of capital punishment in all cases and under all circumstances, and calls for a global moratorium as a first step towards its universal abolition,” Ms. Ashton said in a statement. In Germany, Claudia Roth, a leader of the Green Party, said Mr. Davis’s death was “a cynical and inhumane spectacle that occasions mourning and horror.” Tom Chivers, an editor at The Daily Telegraph in Britain, called capital punishment a “barbaric hangover from an Old Testament morality.” Even Americans who support it, he wrote, must “want it to be credible—a terrible judgment passed down upon the guilty, not a savage lottery of murder.”

With passage in 2000 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights, capital punishment was abolished across the European Union. Germany had ended the practice in 1949, Britain in 1969 and France in 1981. Those decisions were far from universally popular at the time, but a wide-ranging consensus has since emerged that capital punishment is a backward and unjust practice, analysts say. Still, a handful of politicians on the fringes of the right still call for a debate over executions.

Doing away with the death penalty is “seen as an established norm of modern society,” said Nicole Bacharan, a French historian and political scientist at the Institute for Political Studies in Paris. Most of the French have come to consider capital punishment as a moral question, Ms. Bacharan said—and one with an unequivocal answer.—NYTimes

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The Execution of Troy Davis—September 22, 2011—Troy Davis supporters Mercedes Binns and Vizion Jones mourn at the terrible news of his execution. The death of Davis was ensured after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected a last-minute appeal for a stay at about 10:20 p.m. At 10:53, a sedative was injected into his veins, rendering him unconscious. A second injection paralyzed all muscles, causing suffocation. The final injection induced a massive heart attack, causing death at 11:08 p.m. . . .

The barbarism of the process reached its epitome Wednesday night. In the hours before the lethal concoction was delivered, originally scheduled for 7:00 p.m., Davis remained strapped to the gurney while the high court deliberated. Family members and supporters stood in agony outside prison walls, waiting for news. The ruling came in the form of a one-line denial, without explanation or dissent.

It would have taken only five justices’ votes to stop the killing going forward. In the end, even this temporary measure was rejected by the black-robed executioners. Peaceful protesters outside the prison, at one point numbering in the thousands, were surrounded by hundreds of police officers, some decked out in riot gear, while helicopters circled overhead. Earlier in the evening several demonstrators who crossed the road running past the prison were arrested and taken away.—SFBayview

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Troy Davis about to be killed by the state of Georgia  / Judge Mathis Weighs in on the execution of Troy Davis

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*   *   *   *   *

Race, Incarceration, and American Values

By Glenn C. Loury

In this pithy discussion, renowned scholars debate the American penal system through the lens—and as a legacy—of an ugly and violent racial past. Economist Loury argues that incarceration rises even as crime rates fall because we have become increasingly punitive. According to Loury, the disproportionately black and brown prison populations are the victims of civil rights opponents who successfully moved the country's race dialogue to a seemingly race-neutral concern over crime. Loury's claims are well-supported with genuinely shocking statistics, and his argument is compelling that even if the racial argument about causes is inconclusive, the racial consequences are clear.

Three shorter essays respond: Stanford law professor Karlan examines prisoners as an inert ballast in redistricting and voting practices; French sociologist Wacquant argues that the focus on race has ignored the fact that inmates are first and foremost poor people; and Harvard philosophy professor

Shelby urges citizens to break with Washington's political outlook on race. The group's respectful sparring results in an insightful look at the conflicting theories of race and incarceration, and the slim volume keeps up the pace of the argument without being overwhelming.—Publishers Weekly

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Michelle Alexander: US Prisons, The New Jim Crow  / Judge Mathis Weighs in on the execution of Troy Davis

The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness 

By Michelle Alexander

The mass incarceration of people of color through the War on Drugs is a big part of the reason that a black child born today is less likely to be raised by both parents than a black child born during slavery. The absence of black fathers from families across America is not simply a function of laziness, immaturity, or too much time watching Sports Center. Hundreds of thousands of black men have disappeared into prisons and jails, locked away for drug crimes that are largely ignored when committed by whites. Most people seem to imagine that the drug war—which has swept millions of poor people of color behind bars—has been aimed at rooting out drug kingpins or violent drug offenders. Nothing could be further from the truth. This war has been focused overwhelmingly on low-level drug offenses, like marijuana possession—the very crimes that happen with equal frequency in middle class white communities.

In 2005, for example, 4 out 5 drug arrests were for possession and only 1 out of 5 were for sales. Most people in state prison for drug offenses have no history of violence or significant selling activity. Nearly 80 percent of the increase in drug arrests in the 1990s—the period of the most dramatic expansion of the drug war—was for marijuana possession, a drug less harmful than alcohol or tobacco. In some states, though, African Americans have comprised 80 to 90 percent of all drug convictions.

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In the Matter of Color

Race and the American Legal Process: The Colonial Period

By A. Leon Higginbotham Jr.

Chronicles in unrelenting detail the role of the law in the enslavement and subjugation of black Americans during the colonial period. No attempt to summarize the colonial experience could convey the rich and comprehensive detail which is the major strength of Judge Higginbotham's work.—Harvard Law Review

A definitive study of racism, slavery, and the law in early America.—American Historical Review

Founded on comprehensive research, thoroughly documented, and well-written, In the Matter of Color is a contribution of the first importance to the study of racial issues in America, invaluable alike to students of American history, law, or society.—History

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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Negro Digest / Black World

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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posted 22 September 2011

 

 

 

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