Sunday, January 17, 2016

Rev. Pinkney Jailed for Fighting the Racist Power Structure!

Another racist injustice has been committed on December 15, 2014. One year ago today. Berrian County Judge Sterling Schrock sentenced the Rev. Edward Pinkney, leader of the Black Autonomy Network Community Organization, to 30 - 120 months after a trial by an all white jury that was motivated by something other than the truth. Five felony charges stemmed from a recall petition drive against Benton Harbor Mayor James Hightower, who was the puppet for bloodsucking Whirlpool corporation.
The prosecutor presented absolutely no evidence. Evidence does not lie, but prosecutors do. No handwriting experts could say that Pinkney had changed 5 dates on the petitions. The prosecutor, with the judge's approval, told the jury, "you don't need any evidence to convict Pinkney." A series of witnesses stated that they circulated the recall petitions based upon their desire to replace Mayer HighTower, who had opposed a tax measure that would use corporate resources for the rehabilitation of Benton Harbor in the interest of the poorest residents.
The area has an extensive history of racism and police repression. Benton Harbor's African American community faces conditions of poverty, unemployment, and police brutality. Rev. Pinkney's organizing efforts have exposed the mad drive of corporate entities like Whirlpool in the country to maximize profits at the expense of the most oppressed and exploited. The ominous atmosphere of racism and criminal justice bias permeated the preliminary hearing, the trial, and the sentencing phase.
Activists and defenders of Rev. Pinkney place the sentencing in the broader context of the racist attacks against African Americans from Ferguson, Mo and New York City all the way to California. Since the killing of Michael Brown on August 9th, 2014, the U.S. has been hit by a continuous wave of anti-racist demonstration and rebellions.
The racist capitalist system can no longer hide from the penetrating analysis that is coming from the growing mass movement against racism and capitalist exploitation. We the people must stand together: black, white, brown, red, and yellow. It is me today and you tomorrow.