Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Nooses in the News

I'm sure race has nothing to with the recent surge of nooses in the news since we are soooo over bigotry in the U.S.
Police are looking for whoever dangled a 3-foot rope with a small loop at its end from a tree outside a campus cultural center that is home to several black organizations. The incident is being treated as a possible hate crime.

"This is bigger than a noose," Black Student Union President Altmann Pannell told his fellow students, many of whom were wearing "Terps as one" buttons."

"This is bigger than a noose because we as a community know that something else is going on in this country," Pannell said to murmurs of agreement.
That "something else" is not missed by minority communties, especially when the disparities in justice are blatantly tied to the color of one's skin.

For a year, Jena (pronounced JEEN-uh), a poor mining community of 3,000 people, has been embroiled in racial tensions pitting the black community against white school officials and a white prosecutor. It began last August when a black student asked at an assembly if black students could sit under a tree where white students usually sat. The next day, two nooses hung from the tree.

Black parents were outraged by the symbolism, recalling the mob lynchings of black men. They complained to school officials. District superintendent Roy Breithaupt and the school board gave three-day suspensions to the white students who hung the nooses, overruling the recommendation of then-principal Scott Windham that the students be expelled.


The case of the Jena Six has been covered extensively by fellow bloggers, such as Hello, Negro with information on how to donate to the defense fund; also My Right Mind! who offers a slew of tips to assist these young teens.

Nooses are more than just complex slip knots in a rope - they are both symbolic and directly representative of torture, murder and racist mob rule. Are we to allow such dark times in U.S. history to become mainstream again? One path to that reality is treating incidents like this as nothing more than a joke
GERMANTOWN, Tenn. (AP) -- Three stage workers at the city's theatre were fired after city officials said they tied hangman's nooses onto the end of ropes hanging from stage riggings.

City officials on Wednesday defended the firing, and won a vote supporting the decision from the Memphis suburb's Board of Mayor and Aldermen.

"It is the symbol of hatred and bigotry," City Administrator Patrick Lawton said.

Exactly. And there is no excuse for it. Thankfully investigators used some common sense and asked the right questions
  • If the purpose of the knot-tying was to secure the ends of the rope to get them off the floor and out of the way so floor finishers could work, why were chairs left on the floor?

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