Archive for Sunday, October 14, 2007

Rope has long, bloody history

October 14, 2007


This will be a history of rope.

It strikes me that such a history is desperately needed just now. It seems the travesty in Jena, La., has spawned a ghastly trend. Remember how white students at Jena High placed nooses in a tree last year to communicate antipathy toward their African-American classmates? Now it's happening all over.

A noose is left for a black workman at a construction site in the Chicago area. In Queens, a woman brandishes a noose to threaten her black neighbors. A noose is left on the door of a black professor at Columbia University. And that's just last week. Go back a little further and you have similar incidents at the University of Maryland in College Park, at a police department on Long Island, on a Coast Guard cutter, in a bus maintenance garage in Pittsburgh.

Mark Potok, the director of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center told USA Today, "For a dozen incidents to come to the public's attention is a lot. I don't generally see noose incidents in a typical month. We might hear about a handful in a year."

The superintendent of schools in Jena famously dismissed the original incident as a "prank." It was an astonishing response, speaking volumes about the blithe historical ignorance of people who have found it convenient not to peer too closely at the atrocities of the past lest they be accidentally : moved.

But watching this trend unfold, it occurs to me that maybe what we need here is the opposite of ignorance. Maybe what we need is information. Maybe what we need is a history of rope.

A history of rope would have to include, in 1904, Luther Holbert and his wife, who had their fingers chopped off and handed out as souvenirs. Holbert was beaten so badly one of his eyes came out. It hung by a thread. A large corkscrew was used to bore into the couple's flesh. It tore out big chunks of them each time it was withdrawn. A rope was used to tie them to the tree.

A history of rope would have to include, in 1917, Rufus Moncrief, who was beaten senseless by a mob. They used a saw to cut off his arms and otherwise mutilated him. The mob hanged Moncrief. Then, for good measure, they hanged his dog. Ropes were used for both.

A history of rope would have to include, in 1918, Mary Turner, burned alive in Valdosta, Ga. A man used a hog-splitting knife to slash her swollen stomach. The baby she had carried nearly to term tumbled out and managed two cries before the man crushed its head beneath his heel. A rope was used to tie Turner upside down in a tree.

A history of rope would include thousands of Turners, Moncriefs and Holberts. It would range widely across the geography of this nation and the years of the last two centuries. A history of rope would travel from Cairo, Ill., in 1909 to Fort Lauderdale in 1935 to Urbana, Ohio, in 1897 to Wrightsville, Ga., in 1903, to Leitchfield, Ky., in 1913 to Newbern, Tenn. in 1902. And beyond.

You might say the country has changed since then, and it has. The problem is, it's changing again.

It feels as if in recent years we the people have backwards traveled from even the pretense of believing our loftiest ideals. It has become fashionable to decry excessive "political correctness," deride "diversity," sneer at the "protected classes." Code words sanding down hatred's rough edge. "State's rights" for the new millennium. And now, out come the nooses. Just a prank, the man says.

Mary Turner would argue otherwise. I find it useful to remember her, useful to be reminded of things we would rather forget. To remember her is to understand that there is no prank here.

A history of rope would drown your conscience in blood.

- Leonard Pitts Jr., winner of the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, is a columnist for the Miami Herald.


Ragingbear 10 years, 6 months ago

First of all, could Mr. Pitts possibly have found anything more disturbing than the accounts mentioned above?

Secondly, A noose isn't a black or white thing. It's a hanging thing. Just because African Americans were hung or tied up with them does not mean that Caucausion, Asian, European, Aboriginal, Native American, Latino or any other ethnicity was not equally at the mercy of the dreaded rope at some point in time.

While the Jena 6 are a different matter entirely, the rest of the matter is in regards to people like the African American school bus driver who filed a formal complaint about a halloween decoration involving a dummy hanging, since it was wearing a goblin mask, color seemed irrelevant. It is also important to point out that he was not offended by the other displays depicting somebody's innards hanging out of them after being cut in half with a lawnmower, or the other display depiction death by guillotine.

Some people just like to try and play any card they have for attention, influence, prestige, money or just their 15 minutes of fame. While this includes the race card, it can be ANY card, in most cases it isn't about race or religion or threats. It's just about people wanting attention.

Get over it. Get on with your life. I will go and buy rope now before the government passes a law requiring all people purchasing rope to submit their ID, fingerprints and a DNA sample to the government database.

Ragingbear 10 years, 6 months ago

This article is in response not only to the entire Jena 6 scandal, but a series of incidents where African Americans have observed things, or had things happen to them.

Some university higher muckety-muck had a noose put on his door.

An African American School Bus driver was offended over a depicted hanging in a display,

As well as several other incidents. What this article is actually aiming to do is create sensationalism where there is none. Because the last thing that journalist want to do anymore is to actually find news and stories. Why bother when you can just blow something out of proportion and post really graphic depictions of horrid crimes in my morning paper so I can throw up when I read it at breakfast.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 10 years, 6 months ago

Given 'em enough rope and they'll...

[ oh, never mind ]

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Captain_obvious, give me a break. You are making Pitt's point in classic form! You would equate a horrible, terroristic, threat with art? YOU, Yes YOU, just DEFENDED the LOSERS who put NOOSES in a tree to THREATEN blacks! You DEFENDED by equating what they did with free speech! You defended them and their actions. YOU are an example of how we are slipping backwards into the racism we fought so hard against. An ART MUSEUM is a place where these same young men could have displayed a noose in the context of artistic expression and THEN the two situations would be equivalent. To even PRETEND that artistic expression, no matter how obscure or potentially offensive, is the same as a THREAT and that the use of a NOOSE, a symbol of TERROR and phyical violence is moronic. It defies reason. It is, in itself offensive. It is 100% insensitive to blacks. Now RagingBSer will sit at the safety of his anonymous typewriter and, with nearly equal insensitivity PRETEND in his alternate universe that all people, regardless of color, should be equally threatened by the noose. In other words, he is telling Black America to just "get over it." Get real! Lynching is not some ancient practice from prehistory that is no real threat today. A kid was lynched in 1981. A man was dragged by chains behind a pickup just a few years ago. I remember lynchings still happening when I was a child in the early 60's. They certainly happened in the 50's, a time period many people alive still remember well. People like the killers of Emmitt Till (who was lynched) are just NOW being brought to justice. Of the thousands who died in THIS country from lynching, basically ALL of them were black. This isn't a "hanging" thing, it is a THREAT thing, a WHITE thing of threatening BLACKS with lynching. This is US history 101.

I can't believe the level of ignornance you two have displayed. I found the column a bit over the top, but now I see the source of Pitt's immense anger, people like you. People who readily dismiss terroristic threats as pranks and expressions of free speech. SHAME ON YOU BOTH.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Ha ha ha marion. Lynching and the making of threats like this are so funny. It's even more funny to make us feel all warm and fuzzy by belittling serious threats as little pranks worthy of whitticisms like yours. Why don't you drop into the Baptist church on 9th and Ohio this morning and tell the Black congregation how hilarious your proposals are?

badger 10 years, 6 months ago

Ragingbear, how do you suppose the students at Haskell would feel if I tacked an old Army blanket up to a professor's door (maybe one who's been vocally opposing the SLT?) to suggest that them Injuns oughta stay in line cause we know how to handle them with infected 'gifts' and pestilence? Would the fully justifiable outrage some people would feel just be a response to 'some high muckety-muck' having a blanket (a thoroughly innocuous item, of course, because it's not like it was used as a tool of control and oppression by the privileged to destroy and terrorize people - oh, wait, it was) stuck to his door? Would you defend me as 'just kidding around' or would you think that maybe I was trying to frighten or intimidate by reminding that professor that white folks historically killed his kind when they got inconvenient?

Pitts chose the examples he did because recovering from the wounds of past generations shouldn't mean forgetting them. I'm not responsible, despite being white, for any of the things he talks about. I shouldn't feel guilty that they happened, because I wasn't there. What I'm responsible for is being aware that treatment like that has happened, and ensuring that when I see attitudes like those that caused them, and when I see those attitudes being acted out standing up and saying, "No, you know, it's just not OK to intimidate someone into doing it your way by implicit death threats."

That's what a noose is, you know. A death threat. In the heyday of the KKK (first half of the 20th Century), nooses were used in addition to burning crosses to 'give warning' to someone who was stepping out of line. The implicit message in a noose was "If you don't straighten up and fly right, we'll hang another one, with you in it." People with a little more understanding of modern history than you've got would like not to return to days when that was considered a socially acceptable message to send. And if you really think racism and nooses are a laughing matter, you should probably travel a little more. Try Atlanta, Detroit, New Orleans, Houston, Columbus, East St. Louis, and Mobile, for starters.

denak 10 years, 6 months ago

What is truly baffling to me is how certain individuals on this thread will ignore recent history in order to feel more comfortable with their prejudices.

Contrary to what some would like to suggest otherwise, the intimidation and hatred towards African-Americans is recent history. It is in my lifetime. In my lifetime, it was still allowable for the American Red Cross to segregate blood products of Caucasians and African-Americans, in the belief that "black" blood was inferior and that white people would not want black blood during a transfusion. In my lifetime, Martin Luther King was murdered. In my lifetime, segregation in golf courses was still commonplace. In my parents' lifetime, segreagation of amusement parks, cafeterias, theatres was legal, voting prohibited or circumvented, housing discrimination legal and widespread, and marriage between White and Black individuals illegal.

And in their lifetime, the noose, then as is now, was an instrument of torture and death for African-Americans.

To deny it, to minimize it, is to be on the same level of those who deny the Holocaust or any other atrocity in our recent past. Your denial and sacastic remarks should be met with the same kind of derision and disdain that the remarks of Holocaust deniers are met with.

I wonder why you are so quick to ridicule, Mr. Pitts and his column. Could it be that you long for the good ol' days when you could "string one up."


Confrontation 10 years, 6 months ago

I'm sure we'll see "the rope" showing up all over, and many of those ropes will be placed there by African Americans in order to create a stir. Everyone wants their minute of fame and love to make whitey look bad. Some idiot whites will also hang "the rope." Other people of other races will also hang "the rope." But, whitey will be blamed, regardless of who put "the rope" there.

Tychoman 10 years, 6 months ago

I'm surprised at the lack of humanity and common decency shown by so many posters here.

Tychoman 10 years, 6 months ago

Captain Obvious, show an instance of your so-called racism against a lone white man.

Tom McCune 10 years, 6 months ago

My great great grandfather was lynched in Missouri for being an anti-slavery activist and he was probably about as white as they come. Does this give me an irrational fear of rope? Nope.

What a lame editorial. Sadists are sadists and rope is just rope. An inanimate object. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Get over it.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Captain_obvious defends racists displaying a noose. He defends a racist act of terrorism. When confronted by myself for comments he should be ashamed of, he digs deep within himself to come up with this response, and I quote:

"KUgrad is anti-American, pro-slavery and a threat to us all."

Yes, this IS the best he could do.

 Read his posts, read my posts, judge for yourself. Captain_obviouslyaracist, you should be ashamed of yourself.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Marion, you've posted some unusally weird stuff here today. Are you sure you aren't smoking rope?

badger 10 years, 6 months ago

marshacollins said:

"The hangmans noose was first used in colonial times. Therefore the first victims were witches. Hangmans nooses were also used in the wild west on horse thieves and bank robbers. So some blacks were hung by a rope; big deal. That does not mean the black population has the monopoly to complain about a noose hanging from a tree."

Please leave the witches out of this. The history of the social oppression of women under the auspices of religion and the abuse of religious and governmental power based on suspicion of 'witchcraft' is a little too complex to be bandied about like that. Suffice it to say that while witches were hanged (and killed in many other horrifying ways), the noose itself was simply the instrument of their deaths, not a deliberate symbol used to inspire fear and intimidate them. A witch was unlikely to wake up one morning and find someone had hung a noose in the tree outside her house with an effigy of her or her child in it.

Likewise, though horse thieves and outlaws (and pirates, for that matter) had every reason to fear the hangman, a horse thief who dared to register to vote was unlikely to find a noose on his doorstep to put him back in place.

The concern over the current spate of noose sightings is that they're being used not the way they were on outlaws or inconvenient women, but in the way they were used throughout the 1920's and 1930's to ensure that blacks stayed in line, didn't try to vote or own property, or get too much education for their kids or be friends with white women. The symbol still has a lot of power to inspire fear and to intimidate, and so people who don't really dig on the whole idea of intimidating others would like folks to take the issue seriously and not blow it off.

Podesta 10 years, 6 months ago

I was hoping someone had already posted information about the history of lynching as I read the comments. That largely hasn't happened. There are many ignorant and racist remarks instead.

The relationship between race and lynching in the U.S. is very clear. Lynching and other assaults on the rights of blacks were used to reestablish white Southern hegemony as Reconstruction (the few years after the Civil War when the freedmen were being educated and participated in politics) was brought to a quick end for reasons of political expediency. The Ku Klux Klan and other terrorist groups had arisen during Reconstruction (1865-1877) and had free rein once the Union presence was withdrawn. White Americans would lynch around 5,000 African-Americans from that time into the 1950s. There was certainly no comparable lynching of white Americans. (However, the Texas Rangers and vigilantes carried out a similar reign of terror against Mexican-Americans, again, because of race and white supremacy.)

This is the historical background Leonard Pitts alludes to. Because of how widespread lynching was (white Americans often considered it a form of entertainment) it has left an indelible mark on black Americans. There are few African-American families that haven't linkage to people who were lynched, either as family members or members of the same communities. So, the noose is definitely a powerful symbol that carries a significant amount of weight. Someone who hangs a noose where black people will see it is saying: 'Our ancestors hung people like you for sport and we would like to do the same.' Anyone who sees nothing wrong with that is agreeing with those who hang the nooses.

I appreciate that some commenters have addressed this serious issue in a thoughtful way.

CCN's crime library has a well-written history of lynching in the U.S.:

If you can bear gory pictures, some lynchings are depicted here:

People defending the noose hangers have to be an extremely hateful lot.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Captain obvious, slander is against the law. Your ridiculous post, where you attempt to credit me with words I never said and ideas I obviously find repulsive, is not worth responding to.

badger 10 years, 6 months ago

marshacollins says:

"So what dors (sic) it matter if the rules are not applied to all?"

Well, all I'm asking you to do is leave witches out of your little crusade because they're utterly irrelevant to a discussion of racial intimidation.

Or are you suggesting that witches are our own race? Do I get protected status? Can I have a parade? You've gone far afield, sparky, and you're not even making sense any more. The American Frontier and the Salem witch trials may be relevant to a discussion of hanging as a form of execution, but not to a discussion of the noose as a tool of intimidation and coercion.


Lay off.

The witches.


kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Marion, Hanging nooses at a school to threaten black students is not a prank. That is the point.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Slander: a malicious, false, and defamatory statement or report: a slander against his good name.

captain obvious wrote this false, defamatory statment among others: "KUgrad continues to support the actions of six racist blacks. "

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Podesta (Anonymous) says:

I was hoping someone had already posted information about the history of lynching as I read the comments. That largely hasn't happened. There are many ignorant and racist remarks instead."

Yes, so it tends to go. Welcome aboard.

ksdivakat 10 years, 6 months ago

How about some good old fashioned facts concerning what actually took place in Jena LA?? First of all, the black kid asks the principal, can they sit under the tree? the principal says yes and the next day there are nooses hanging from that tree. The white boys who placed them there were expelled by the principal who in turn had that decision reversed by the superintendant. The White boy who was beaten, wasnt innocent in this, he "taunted" the black kids about getting off so lightly, so the black kids kicked his a*%. Now do the black kids need to be punished? absolutely, they had no right to put their hands on anyone, black white or otherwise, but the white kids who placed the noose there should also be punished for a hate crime as thats exactly what it was. Now for the rest of you who have no problem with the "rope" please keep this in mind...none of you, not one, is all american, your ancestory can be traced back to whatever, but your not all american or all "white" Those nooses are associated with the Klansmen who hung good and decent black people because of the color of their skin. The association comes the same to everyones mind including children as witnessed when the Univ of LA made a stupid move and actually placed black children 5 yrs old in a noose to prove a point....the only point proven is that was a dumb move. But nonetheless, even a child knows that those ropes are meant for black people. If you choose to look at this offense as a school yard prank, perhaps you should search your soul and ask yourself if you really are a racist and then deal with it accordingly. Ask yourself, are you mad because the white kid got his butt kicked, or are you mad that in this country a child would hang that nose with all of its evil intensions?

daddax98 10 years, 6 months ago

ksdivakat writes: "Now do the black kids need to be punished? absolutely, they had no right to put their hands on anyone, black white or otherwise"

then marshacollins states:

"So with that logic then it is fine for anyone to beat anyone else close to death if the party of the firs6t part is over sensitive and becomes offended"

Marha did you not read the post and BTW who got beat close to death? the victim went to a party that same night.

one last thing this has to be the funnist thing ever written here "Racism has a home, and it is in the anti-semitic liberal left." Are you saying that Ann Coultre is a liberal now? Please take her back I don't want her

badger 10 years, 6 months ago

marshacollins, will you please for the love of gods and little green apples leave the witches out of this? The Salem Witch trials were over three hundred years ago. They're not relevant to the modern-day use of the noose as a means of threat and terrorism. The comparison is ludicrous.

Generally, I'd say the more rational witches are willing to let bygones be bygones on 300-year-old hangings, and focus on more pressing concerns of active discrimination. Nooses aren't being used to intimidate witches. You seen any? I haven't, though admittedly it's been a full 15 hours since I visited the land my organization owns in Southeast Texas, and I won't be back until Thursday, so it's conceivable someone might hang nooses on the outer gate in that time. Or has someone maybe decorated Camp Gaea with nooses and I just haven't heard about it yet?

Just...please, leave us out of the fight you're picking. I for one want no part of it.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

captain obvious writes "Captain_Obvious (Anonymous) says:

KUgrad, I stand by my post. You are supporting racism. You haven't condemned the black racists for their hate crime."

My initial post was in response to YOUR defense of a racist act. I never condoned the use of violence by anyone, including the Jena 6. You have tried over and over again to put words in my mouth. You have failed. Like you, I wasn't present when the nooses were hung, when the fights occurred. Neither of us knows what was said, done, etc. before the fight. I have no idea if it was a hate crime. You don't either. Just as you try to put words in my mouth, you define what happened as a hate crime, without all the details being public, then act like your assumtions are reality.

Obviously, I oppose and condem all hate crimes and racist acts.

I did not put words into your mouth. That is the difference. You actually argued that hanging NOOSES at a SCHOOL was just "freedom of expression." I argued that your postion is untenable. That it is ridiculous. That you should be ashamed for trying to rationalize and defend putting a noose in a schoolyard. You have responded with personal attacks and by pretending that you can assign your words to me.

Shame on you. You defended racist actions.

badger 10 years, 6 months ago

Yes, but racial intimidation is alive and well.

Magpie 10 years, 6 months ago

I know I am screaming into the void at this point, but

Sorry, people, but you cannot deny that the rope has been used as a tool of racial hatred and racialized killings in this country. The willful blindness and defensiveness I see on this board does nothing to help us cure our collective racism and heal from our racist past.

Says the historian Phillip Dray: "Lynching was an undeniable part of daily life, as distinctly American as baseball games and church suppers. Men brought their wives and children to the events, posed for commemorative photographs, and purchased souvenirs of the occasion as if they had been at a company picnic." (

Perhaps people who remain unconvinced that hanging a noose is not a racist gesture should STFU for a second and listen to other points of view--they are not qualified to explain what a noose does or does not mean to a black professor/student/citizen because they have no idea.

Here's a Web site that illustrates how very neutral the noose is: (May trigger.)

ksdivakat 10 years, 6 months ago

And heres the truth to all this....the nooses were hung AFTER a black child sat under the tree...not after a witch did and not even after a colonial soldier did, but after a black student did. Therefore, it doesnt take rocket science to figure out what the implication to that was.

lakotachick 10 years, 6 months ago

African Americans weren't the only group of people that were hanged in U.S. history,

Just wanted to pass along this little known and ignored fact in "The History of Rope in the U.S."

since the schools don't teach kids the real history of this country...

thanks for reading. peace.

"Largest mass hanging in United States history" 38 Santee "Sioux" Indian men Mankato, Minnesota, Dec. 16, 1862 303 Indian males were set to be hanged

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"Summers_Eve (Anonymous) says:

Let's look at carjacking. About 40,000 annually, almost 60% of which are committed by black males. Compare and contrast to blacks being about 13% of the total population."

As with most crimes, I think that a racial deviation is likely the product of the differing average type of lifestyles, as well as income levels, education, etc. that are still very prevalent between different races. In general, white folk, especially middle class white folk from the suburbs, have a higher education (not to mention better schools, in terms of content and available socialization mechanisms), a higher level of income, and neighborhoods that are less likely to have a high crime rate. I would say that inequalities in crime statistics have a lot to say about the many inequalities that still exist today, rather than being an indicator of a race that is simply more likely to commit crimes.

Tychoman 10 years, 6 months ago

Regardless of these noose incidents were supposed to be a prank or not, it's still a hate crime. You did X because So-and-so is Y. And no matter how you look at it, a noose IS regarded as a death threat. What other conceivable purpose is there?

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"right_thinker (Anonymous) says:

Sort of a racist view jonas. Kind of an apologist for the black community. Have some more Kool-Aid-you must be terribly thirsty!"

Errr. . . . right. You don't even try to make your ridiculous prating conform to reality anymore, do you?

booklover 10 years, 6 months ago

Dots..., Well, no, the principle expelled the white students who hung the noose. The Superindent reversed it. Good old boy network strikes again. Nice try though. Kinda wish you were right, because I think that if that was the reason, this might have all be avoided.

Podesta 10 years, 6 months ago

These are the statistics for motor vehicle thefts from the U.S. Department of Justice:

An interesting fact is that black households are victims of vehicle theft at a much greater rate than white households -- 8 percent and 13 percent. Another revealing aspect is that many perpetrators are juveniles -- kids taking cars for joyrides. There is a report from 1999 saying 58 percent of carjackers are African-American that is often linked to white supremacist sites in Google. I guess the commenter who keeps harping on the topic comes from such environs. Current data may be different considering the decline in vehicle thefts. Regardlessly, the issue does not justify racial intimidation as implied. Nothing does.

The person who thinks the Jena noose hanging should have been under rug swept is wrong on both the facts and the issues. The white power structure did try a coverup. But, that just resulted in assaults on black students, arson of a school building, a white adult threatening black youths with a rifle and the eventual retaliatory attack that was the genesis of the ludicrous attempted murder charges. What that commenter suggests maintains an unacceptable status quo instead of reforming it. Nothing short of equal treatment is acceptable.

Leonard Pitts is one of the sharpest, most insightful observers of the American and world scenes being published today. With this column he has done it again.

Woodduck_5363 10 years, 6 months ago

What a topic for everyone to jump on the bandwagon for. You can always see guilt when there is a topic like this. This is history you just can't ignore it just like your precious Colombis, David Duke, and your K,K,K. When a white person does something unjust to people of color, no problem you can sure justify this actions.

Two sets of laws for two sets of people. For peole of color it is JUST US, For you people who are jwhiter than white it is JUSTICE.

badger 10 years, 6 months ago


You're ignorant, plain and simple.

There is no comparison to the practice of hanging witches and cowboys (execution) to hanging black people (lynching), except that the same tool was used to do both. The issue behind lynching is social or racial intimidation. Ultimately, the witch/cowboy issue is about legality, because witchcraft was just as much a crime in Salem as horse rustling was in Tombstone. You're being deliberately obtuse, and you're using the three hundred year old persecution of my faith to justify your bigotry.

Please explain how:

  1. The noose was used as a symbol to terrorize witches and/or cowboys (who I don't really object to you using to support your racism, because I'm not a cowboy) into not advocating for their legal and Constitutional rights. Extra credit will be given for examples in the last hundred years.


  1. Every black person who ended up at the end of a rope was legally justified in being put there. If the two things are the same, lynching and execution, please demonstrate the crimes committed to merit the lynchings. Extra credit will be given for examples you don't just make up.

You're a fine one to talk condescendingly about 'moving towards peace'. Weren't you just talking in another thread about how glad you are all the junkie thugs are killing each other off and saving you the trouble? Mighty peaceful, there, sparky.

ksdivakat 10 years, 6 months ago

marshacollins.....I am not going to belittle you, but you obviously have no clue, again, this issue did NOT come up because a witch or a cowboy or a soldier sat under the tree it came up because a black kid sat under the white tree. Are you aware that in many areas in the south especially LA and MS it is still segregated? That is the issue with this case, and to not believe that racism and predjuidce doesnt exist against black people is just plain nieve. Please educate yourself.

Podesta 10 years, 6 months ago

That must be one desperate black woman!

But, it happens. Some people of color take up with racists.

Podesta 10 years, 6 months ago

There are some very foolish commenters on this site.

I happened across a wonderful remark from the revered historian Charles Ogletree at the WaPo in an article about the Congressional hearings regarding the situation in David Duke country:

"There is a cancer in Jena, and we're treating it with aspirin and good wishes and hope," Ogletree said. "When any public official tells a child that a noose is a prank, a practical joke . . . they are not addressing the underlying issue."

Obviously, the leadership in Jena is barely above some of the mouth breathers on this thread. So, I believe that the federal government must intervene if a great miscarriage of justice is to be stopped. Of course, that means putting the Bush administration Justice Department in the hot seat regarding a civil rights issue. Time to watch them squirm.

Woodduck_5363 10 years, 6 months ago

Well right-thinker what is wrong with kool-aid. R U saying only black folk drink it? (Hidden racism) huh

jonas 10 years, 6 months ago

"I have been informed by her that I recently graduated from the liberal white class and am quite happy to know that I no longer come across as a driveling fool"

To the grad-level of "One actual real live black person thinks I've got it, so there," eh? Maybe you should come back when she informs you that you are no longer pompous and rude.

kugrad 10 years, 6 months ago

Powershopper, Are you really so delusional that you not only come up with this claptrap but actually believe it? You know nothing about me and I have never said anything in support of racism and have spoken out against it time and again, yet you conclude from this that I am a "closet racist." Then you give me your "black" credentials?

There is no anti-racist bandwagon to jump on. Anti-racism isn't some trend that one goes along with. I guess you wouldn't know that, since you yourself say that you were clueless before marrying a black person suddenly imparted great knowledge of these things upon you. Well, if you read all these posts and the best that you can do is to attack me personally and try to show your street cred, - that is the culmination of your pondering these issues - then you are still clueless.

I value your opinion so deeply due to the vast intellect you display here regularly on topics of race. You always seem to find the opportunity to say you are in a relationship with a black woman, and clearly that makes you oh so much more well-informed on these matters. I'm glad to know your wife is the final arbiter of blackness and all things soulful. I'm sure she would think it a simple prank if some white kids threatened one of her children with a noose. After all, only a closet racist would find that offensive in your universe.

pace 10 years, 6 months ago

stupid if you think a noose is not a vivid symbol of racism. Next you will say the burning a cross in someones' yard is just a religious object that happens to be on fire. Those kids weren't celebrating the anniversary of the book "In Cold Blood" they were being nasty.

Bubbles 10 years, 6 months ago

Some cultures are such emotional weenies. Everything offends these types of people. There is nothing that can be done for these fragile emotional basket cases that hasn't already been done.

These cultures act as though they are the ONLY ones that have ever had challenges.

Get over yourselves already.

Podesta 10 years, 6 months ago

It is apparent Powershopper just believes whatever he hears on Right dominated talk radio and has not an iota of understanding of American history or race relations. Ironically, if he has a child with his judgmentally impaired black partner, that child could be in the same shoes as the Jena 6.

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