AMERICAN JUSTICE ON TRIAL: People v. Newton by Lise Pearlman

By Lise Pearlman

As I write this, the kingdom remains to be reeling from a number of shocks in July 2016. First, because the month started, got here but extra videotaped incidents of police taking pictures to loss of life black arrestees after many different such widely-publicized incidents over the former a number of years. The day after the Fourth of July vacation, stressful pictures went viral of Baton Rouge police outdoors a comfort shop firing time and again at 37-year-old Alton Sterling whereas white policemen already had Sterling pinned face down at the flooring. an afternoon later, one thousand miles away in a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota, the quick-thinking lady pal of Philandro Castile used her cellphone to seize a neighborhood policeman nonetheless waving his gun open air Castile’s automobile window as Castile lay bleeding to demise seated beside her following a site visitors cease. This photograph snapshot was once inside of days via breaking information of a awful sniper assault on Dallas policemen who have been tracking one of the Black Lives subject protest rallies triggered by way of the deaths of Sterling and Castile. Then, on July 17, 2016 got here one other assault, this time on Baton Rouge police.
The carnage and proliferation of demonstrations and opposed reactions within the aftermath have drawn renewed nationwide concentration to fractured police-community kinfolk in towns throughout state, the very factor that gave upward push to the Black Panther celebration a part century in the past. certainly, the day after video pictures went viral of Castile death from gunshot wounds following a site visitors cease, AlterNet reporter Alexandra Rosenmann drew an instantaneous comparability to the sensationalized 1968 homicide trial of Panther social gathering co-founder Huey Newton. Rosenmann titled her net article, “Gun Rights, Police Brutality and the Case of the Century: Philandro Castile’s tragic case of police brutality pulls essentially the most recognized instances again into focus.”1
The incidents did begin in related methods. within the early morning of October 28, 1967, Oakland policeman John Frey stopped the automobile Newton used to be riding to put in writing a price ticket for an unpaid site visitors nice. A shootout ensued that left Officer Frey useless and Newton and a back-up officer heavily wounded. Newton claimed to were unarmed and the sufferer of an abusive arrest; no gun belonging to Newton was once came upon. His dying penalty trial the next summer season drew foreign cognizance as to whether any black guy may get a good trial in the US.
Before the lethal July 2016 incidents happened, interviewees for this ebook had already famous the awesome relevance of the 1968 Newton case to present occasions. between them is William “Bill” Patterson, a former President of the Oakland NAACP and the 1st black foreman of the Alameda County Grand Jury: “It does resonate this present day. a tender guy [Oscar supply III] being killed within the BART station by means of BART police and the way that performed out. The Florida case . . . back one other younger guy [Trayvon Martin] shot to demise. those occasions proceed to emerge and if we aren't cautious, we'll locate heritage repeating itself.”
In the prior numerous months, either champions and critics of the Black Lives subject stream have drawn parallels to the break up between american citizens within the turbulent Sixties. The comparisons reached some extent the place President Obama felt forced to reassure the area, on July nine, 2016, that the majority american citizens should not as divided as we have been fifty years in the past: “When we commence suggesting that someway, there’s this huge, immense polarization and we’re again to the placement within the ’60s, that’s simply no longer precise. You’re no longer seeing riots, and you’re no longer seeing police going after those who are protesting peacefully. . . . We’ve acquired a starting place to construct on . . .”
President Obama himself symbolizes the profound switch within the textile of our country over the last part century. So, too, do black police chiefs like Dallas Police leader David Brown. leader Brown’s response to a black gunman ambushing randomly selected white officials at the night of July 7, 2016, captured the emotions of so much american citizens: “We are heartbroken....

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AMERICAN JUSTICE ON TRIAL: People v. Newton

As I write this, the country remains to be reeling from a number of shocks in July 2016. First, because the month begun, got here but extra videotaped incidents of police taking pictures to demise black arrestees after many different such widely-publicized incidents over the former a number of years. The day after the Fourth of July vacation, aggravating photos went viral of Baton Rouge police outdoors a comfort shop firing time and again at 37-year-old Alton Sterling whereas white policemen already had Sterling pinned face down at the floor.

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