Monday, September 17, 2007

It's not just about the Jena Six

Originally uploaded by shaedove99.
You've likely heard about the Jena Six case which is heating to beyond boiling.

Turns out, it's not just the Jena Six. From Earl Ofari Hutchinson we learn Jena Six Case Shows Black Teens Get Short End of Stick. Mr. Hutchinson "examines the way the justice system is weighted against blacks." More than four years ago, a Louisiana legislative investigating team
found unsurprisingly that black teens were hit with far stiffer sentences than white teens for the same crimes. It made no difference whether the whites had a prior history of criminal or bad behavior and the black teens were altar boys and had a squeaky clean record. The blacks still got harsher sentences. Countless studies show that a black teen is six times more likely to be tried and sentenced to prison than a young white, even when the crimes are similar, or even less severe than those committed by white teens.

Nationally, blacks make up 40 percent of youths tried in adult courts and nearly 60 percent of those sentenced to state prisons.
As Mr. Hutchinson states, "It’s business as usual for black teen offenders and Jena won’t change that. And that’s an even bigger tragedy."

1 comment:

  1. Good post, Peter. Unfortunately, far too many people would like to believe that Jena represents the exception, not the rule. Take a look at Mosquito Blog today - you'll find a locally produced video showing exactly what you wrote.