Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Pagel finally admits all-white juries are racist

Rev. Edward Pinkney attended the Berrien County Commissioner meeting on Dec. 2. He reported that county prosecutor Gerald Vigansky and chief prosecutor Art Cotter have refused to prosecute a rapist. Charles Washington is a police informant who has attacked and raped several (at least) women in the community. His attempted rape of Vanity Swift is the most recent known crime he's committed.

After asking what can be done to protect women and children in Benton Harbor and the area, commissioner Gloria Gillespie said, "prosecutor Art Cotter can pick and choose who he wants to prosecute." Stunned by her statement regarding violent crimes which are being committed, Pinkney concluded that the commissioners and the courthouse are one and the same.

After years of talking to the commissioners about the enormous numbers of lives being stolen by all-white juries, Rev. Pinkney was happy to hear commissioner chairman Dave Pagel finally admit that all-white juries are racist. A minimum of 70% of people being tried and convicted in Berrien Cty. are African-American. Almost all of them have all-white juries. (probably 100%)

Information abounds pointing to the injustice and inequity of all-white juries trying African-American defendants, but Berrien County will be the last to acknowledge it. In fact, they just might have been the originators of all-white juries. At least they institutionalized it. Here's just one article on the subject:

Required reading for all Americans should be a new book by Atty. Michelle Alexander -
The New Jim Crow.

“After reading The New Jim Crow, Michelle Alexander's stunning work of scholarship, one gains the terrible realization that, for people of color, the American criminal justice system resembles the Soviet Union's gulag---the latter punished ideas, the former punishes a condition.”
—David Levering Lewis, Pulitzer-prize winning historian at NYU and author of W.E.B. Du Bois: The Fight for Equality and the American Century, 1919-1963

"We need to pay attention to Michelle Alexander's contention that mass imprisonment in the U.S. constitutes a racial caste system. Her analysis reflects the passion of an advocate and the intellect of a scholar."
—Marc Mauer, Executive Director, The Sentencing Project, author of Race to Incarcerate