Uphold the 14th Amendment of the Constitution in the Judiciary Hearing for the Jena 6
- Citizens who support JUSTICE for ALL
- United States of America
A Call to Action (ACT-A) appreciates citizens such as yourself who came together on September 20, 2007, in a heart felt effort to achieve justice for the six young black men, now known as “Jena 6.” ACT-A is starting a writing campaign. Below is some background information:
On August 30, 2006: There was an assembly held at Jena High School, various issues were discussed concerning the rules and policies of the upcoming school year. During the assembly a student [black] asked, “If black students were permitted to sit underneath the “white tree” in the center of the square, located in the middle of the campus.” The Assistant Principal, Gawen Burgess responded, “Don’t even go there. You know you can sit anywhere you want.”
August 31, 2006: Students arrived to school that morning to find three nooses hanging from the “white tree.” Three students were reprimanded and recommended for expulsion by the principal, Scott Windham. There was a hearing held by the expulsion committee in which they ruled against expulsion and instead suspended the students [decided the incident was a “childish prank”]. They received a three days in school suspension. Officials involved in Jena could have taken the necessary actions to reduce the tension in the community: instead their actions perpetuated the tension.
September 1, 2006: Black students held a peaceful protest, underneath the “white tree” in an act of solidarity. There were a string of events that unfolded subsequent to the hanging of the nooses. From September 2 – November 29, 2006: Various protests took place and several parental meetings were held with the school board.
November 30, 2006: The schools academic building was set ablaze. Law enforcement officials used the term “racial tension” to describe the events of the weekend. Department Investigator, Paul Smith, said the unusual racial unrest throughout the community, incited Friday night’s fight at the Jena Fair Barn.
December 1, 2006: Justin Sloan, 22, white male of Jena was one of the people taken in custody for the attack on one of the now known “Jena 6” at the fair barn party. Justin was charged with a misdemeanor and never spent one day in jail. The following day, Matt Windham brandished a shotgun and threatened three black students: Robert Bailey Jr, Ryan Simmons, and Theodore Shaw. These three were charged with second-degree robbery, theft of a firearm, and conspiracy to commit second-degree robbery.
DA Reed Walters, charged Mychal Bell and the others with attempted second degree murder and conspiracy. However, the day of Mychal’s trial, the DA reduced the charges to aggravated battery and conspiracy. DA Walters did not initiate similar charges against the white student, Matt Windham.
Furthermore, other related actions by the DA have promoted these concerns. Prior to the charges being brought against the six young men, DA Walters attended an assembly—addressing the students who participated in the protest. He looked at them and stated, “I can take your life with the stroke of this pen.”
DA Reed Walters is the attorney for the school board. However, he prevented the board from viewing the school’s internal investigation report, prior to the vote being cast to expel the six students. Is Attorney Walters violating [ABA Model Rules 1.16(c)(1)] which is—duty to decline or terminate representation that violates the rules of professional conduct?
We, the undersigned, call on those hosting and attending the judiciary hearing of the “Jena 6”—ensure that the 14th Amendment to the Constitution is upheld. The original incident occurred last fall, this hate crime was ignored and dismissed as a “childish prank.”
We trust that you will exercise your authority to faithfully support the 14th Amendment which states—all persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside…
While there are competing views surrounding the situation, what is undeniably clear is that these young men are not afforded the constitutional protections or educational rights, to which they are entitled. It is outrageous that DA Walters is still pursuing charges against the “Jena 6.” Mychal Bell, the first of these young men to be tried, is facing imprisonment until he is 21. This young man was tried by an all white jury.
We would like to believe that what is happening in Jena is not consistent with your values, or with what the State of Louisiana sees as justice. We asked that you demand DA Walters to drop all charges against the five young men awaiting trial. You should seek immediate an investigations into the incidents surrounding the Jena 6 cases in Louisiana. Those in authority must investigate the conduct of DA Reed Walters, whose actions are blatant and an unacceptable abuse of power and authority.
We ask that you change venue and seek immediate removal of Judge J. P. Mauffray. Justice should be blind, but unfortunately, prosecutors and those who uphold the laws are not and it has impacted how he exercised their prosecutorial discretion.
Initially, DA Walters attempted to charge Mychal Bell and the other young men with attempted second degree murder and battery charges. Nevertheless, if DA Walter was practicing justice fairly, Justin L Barker, 17, of Jena would have been prosecuted for the possession of a firearm in a firearm-free zone, which is against the Louisiana State Law, on May 10, 2007. Where is the equality of justice for both sides?
May GOD touch your heart and minds—make the right decision: JUSTICE for ALL!
The Uphold the 14th Amendment of the Constitution in the Judiciary Hearing for the Jena 6 petition to Citizens who support JUSTICE for ALL was written by A Call to Action and is in the category Government at GoPetition.