OK, let's forget the fact that Mychal Bell has four previous adjudications, the equivalent of an adult conviction. (2 criminal damage to property and 2 battery charges.) Let's forget that each time he was slapped on the wrist for these and allowed to continue playing football for Jena High. (Apparently sports stardom trumps racism in small town America.) Let's forget the racial overtones in this case. Let's operate on the facts alone.
Six children assaulted one child. One kid snuck up behind Justin Barker and hit him in the back of the head, so hard that it knocked him unconcious. Then the Jena 6 kicked and stomped him so badly that he spent almost three hours in the local emergency room for injuries to his head and face. That's it. A six-against-one sneak attack. And I'm supposed to feel sorry for these thugs?
I don't think so.
Now let's bring in the racial stuff and have some fun. If the little town of Jena, (for all you dumbass reporters in the media who still can't get it right it's pronounced Jeena, not Jenna) is supposed to be this 85% white mecca of racism, why was Mychal Bell not thrown in jail on any of his previous offenses? Oh, yeah, he's a football star in the making. A running back too. Apparently the next OJ Simpson.
Now let's examine the all white jury of six. Al Sharpton would have you believe that this is inherently racist, however of the hundred or so computerized summons sent out, not one single black person showed up! It has been rumoured that this was an intentional ploy to create a racially biased jury, ensuring that any convictions would be immediately thrown out on appeal, but I don't know how much of that I believe. Of the six jurors, only one is male and he actually attended school with and knew Mychal Bell's father. Were they freinds? Enemies? Or just acquaintances? That relationship alone could be grounds for dismissal.
"But it was racism that triggered the beating," you say. Well, let's see. According to the media, this is a result of white kids hanging nooses from a tree which a black student sat under. A tree which has traditionally been a white student gathering place on the school grounds. Now I'm not trying to downplay the incredible stupidity of the white students who received three day suspensions. They should have been expelled and charged with hate crimes for hanging those nooses. But of the 30-40 witnesses interviewed, none of them linked the beating to the noose incident!
On August 31, 2006, a black male freshman asked the Jena High principal for permission to sit under the "white tree." The principal rightly told the student that he could sit anywhere he wanted. The following morning, three nooses were found hanging in the "white tree." The students responsible were caught and the principal recommended expulsion, but the school board gave them three days of in-school suspension. Three months later, on December 4th, the beating occured. And guess what? Justin Barker had nothing to do with the nooses! Justin's beating came from his own incredible stupidity. Earlier that day Barker was overheard laughing and joking about how one of his attackers, Robert Bailey, Jr, was beaten by a white man the week before. Racism? Yes, but at least get the facts straight!
As for the attempted murder charges which everyone thinks is too strong, what would you call six people beating an already unconcious kid? If they stopped after he fell unconcious then I'd say assault and battery would be fine, but since knocking him unconcious was the first act followed by five or ten minutes of kicking and stomping... well, I say tough shit. If you continue to beat an unconcious person it shows that you have no concern for that persons life. That's attempted murder folks.
The upshot of all this is that there is an incredibly misguided public outcry of support for six thugs who snuck up on one kid and beat him unconcious, almost killing him. Even David Bowie has donated $10,000 for their defense. Right now, as you read this, the media is teaching children everywhere that it's perfectly fine to beat someone if he's white and you're black. It's utterly repugnant to me. Where were the so-called black leaders during the noose incedent? Why didn't someone teach these kids about the law and file suit against the noose hangers? That could have shown todays kids, the Jena 6 especially, that violence is not the correct recourse to racism. With all the mis-informed attention this case has gotten the Jena 6 will probably get off light and they better look at this as a second chance to turn their lives around.
But I'm white, so I guess I'm just another racist regardless of the facts.