Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tha Artivist: Don’t Let Mississippi Make Jamie Scott Into A Martyr Like Clyde Kennard

Listen To The W.E. A.L.L. B.E. Radio Special:
All Eyes Are Still On Mississippi: Free The Scott Sisters!!!

Also On W.E. A.L.L. B.E. Radio...
***Check Out The Scott Sisters Update Featuring Sis. Nancy Lockhart 3/24/2010 (Starts In The 2nd Hour)***

The Scott Sisters (l-r): Jamie & Gladys
To Learn More About The Scott Sisters Please Visit:
Tha Artivist: Don’t Let Mississippi Make Jamie Scott Into A Martyr Like Clyde Kennard

artwork by Lee Jack Morton

Ode to the Death Angel
by Clyde Kennard(read at his funeral)

Oh here you come again
Old chilly death of Ol'
To plot out life
And test immortal soul
I saw you fall against the raging sea
I cheated you then and now you'll not catch me
I know your face
It's known in every race
Your speed is fast
And along the way
Your shadow you cast
High in the sky
You thought you had me then
I landed safely
But here you are again
I see you paused upon that forward pew
When you think I'm asleep
I'm watching you
Why must you hound me so everywhere I go?
It's true my eyes are dim
My hands are growing cold
Well take me on then, that
I might at last become my soul

I am truly worried that the state of Mississippi is trying to murder Jamie Scott like they did Clyde Kennard. It is atrocious to think that Jamie already in the end stage of kidney failure suffering one more day while being denied a life saving kidney transplant via her sister Gladys by The State because of The State’s perverted sense of justice and law and order. In a lot of ways the wrongful imprisonment of The Scott Sisters is similar to the situation that Clyde Kennard himself faced in Jim Crow-Civil Rights Era Mississippi.

Like The Scott Sisters, Kennard was set up by corrupt officials and faulty (lying) witness testimony. The victims in both cases were set up by those representing the law and powerful political interests in state and local governments. Clyde Kennard, a native of Hattiesburg, MS, and decorated Korean War Veteran who grew up in Chicago, returned to his native Mississippi to take care of his ailing stepfather and run his own chicken farm. He also wanted to become a lawyer and with the encouragement and support of NAACP Field Secretary Medgar Evers unsuccessfully tried to get enrolled into what is now known as the University of Southern Mississippi at Hattiesburg. His ambition for education and the law will ultimately lead to his frame-up by The State, wrongful imprisonment and martyrdom.

On September 15, 1959, after meeting with celebrated White supremacist and University of Southern Mississippi Pres. William David McCain, Kennard was pulled over by the local police for reckless driving and accused of having alcoholic beverages in his vehicle (Prohibition was not repealed in Mississippi until 1966, the last state to do so)…This was obviously a set-up because the police actually perjured themselves on the alcohol accusation…He was then convicted for possession of alcohol, fined $600 and was the victim of a credit boycott by local vendors.

And then on Sept. 25, 1960, Kennard and an accomplice, Johnny Lee Roberts, were accused of stealing $25 in chicken feed from a warehouse in Forrest County. The all white jury only took 10 minutes to find him guilty on Nov. 21, 1960. He was sentenced to 7 years of hard time at the notorious Parchment State Penitentiary. Medgar Evers called the conviction “a mockery of judicial justice” and was promptly fined $100 and sentenced to 30 days in jail which was eventually overturned by the Mississippi State Supreme Court On June 12, 1961. Eventually, sometime later Roberts testified under oath that Kennard was innocent: "Kennard did not ask me to steal, Kennard did not ask me to break into the co-op, Kennard did not ask me to do anything illegal."

While incarcerated, Kennard was diagnosed with colon cancer in 1961. Surgery was performed on him at the University of Mississippi Hospital and the medical staff suggested that he be placed under their complete care or that they be allowed complete access to monitor his condition. However, the hard lined prison officials under the direction of the Miss. State Sovereignty Commission (the forerunner to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security) had other nefarious ideas. He went without any treatment for an ungodly extended period of time, being forced to endure back and spirit breaking work on the prison plantation while the cancer metastasized, accelerating his 7 year prison stint into a death sentence.

Because of his cancer making him too physically weak and sick to be productive as well as national media attention and outrage, Clyde Kennard was finally released into the care of his sister with only a few sacred months to live. He was flown to Chicago by the comedian and activist Dick Gregory…He had several more surgeries at the University of Chicago with little success in circumventing the illness...He eventually succumbed to his illness on July 4, 1963, almost just one month after his good friend Medgar Evers was assassinated in front of his family home in Jackson, MS.

Ironically it took an Illinois high school teacher, Barry Bradford, and his dedicated students (Mona Ghadiri, Agnes Mazur, and Callie McCune), the Center On Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University as well as some Mississippi political heavyweights such as former federal judge Charles Pickering and former governor William Winters working in unison to help Kennard get absolved of wrongdoing by the state of Mississippi on May 17, 2006 when his original burglary conviction was thrown out by Judge Bob Helfrich, almost 43 years after his death.

The sad thing about this whole affair is that The State created the ultimate crime against Kennard by violating his civil and human rights.

The reason why The State was hesitant in exonerating Kennard was because The State feared retribution in the form of legal litigation from Kennard’s surviving family. But the family was more concerned about seeing their ancestor’s name and legacy cleared and restored to good standing for posterity rather than financial gain.

Just like in the Kennard case a pardon for the Scott Sisters is ludicrous because they are victims of a gross miscarriage of justice as well as cruel and unusual punishment perpetuated by the powers that be of a corrupt state machination. Some of the cogs in this machination are crucifying them for no good substantial reason other than being related to folks who pissed off some of The State’s corrupt gate keepers.

The State also fear and rightfully so the legal repercussions from the family of the Scott Sisters…However, I would reason with The State to not compound their well deserved woes and problems any further by keeping these innocent sisters as neo-chattel slaves of The State.

If Jamie Scott’s condition gets any worse and she is continually denied a kidney transplant and adequate health treatment then her precious blood will be on the hands of The State and her martyrdom on the conscience of Governor Barbour and other state officials/gate keepers. Mississippi doesn’t need to add anymore martyrs to its shameful history.

The facts are that Mississippi has more Black elected officials than other U.S. state, more Blacks living within its boundaries than any other state and yet nearly 80% of its prison population is Black…This should make us all realize that we need a Black agenda and that it doesn’t start with Pres. Obama, it starts with us!
Dr. King once said that the only way anyone can ride you is if your back is bent, now’s the time to walk upright with some pride towards justice and reconciliation…We cannot be oppressed or repressed without our consent…A vampire (blood sucker) cannot enter your home unless you invite it in as a guest.

The ghosts of Mississippi past are calling for righteous exoneration on behalf of not only the Scott Sisters, but all those who have disproportionately suffered under this neo-American Apartheid system…

The fact that Mississippi is trying to profit off the terrorism that it perpetuated and continues to do so on its citizens in the form of multi-million dollar museum exhibits featuring the legendary bestiality and inhumanity of The State on display in Mickey Mouse fashion would be like Germany building and profiting off an amusement park themed around The Jewish Holocaust: bad taste would not even begin to describe the notion…

What truly makes this a Faustian deal is that while the state of Mississippi plans to make its killing floors and crime scenes against humanity and progress money making morbid tourist traps, that many of the guilty ones are still living free, in comfort and enjoying their golden years without interruption only to die for the most part from old age and good living. While the guilty ones are protected by The Magnolia State Gestapo Regime, the forgotten or much marginalized victims’ families are forced to endure in silence, indifference and with seething anger no doubt against the hypocritical nature of justice and liberty in this country of ours…All the while the civil rights cold cases are going into deep freeze near permafrost mode never to be reconciled or resolved…

To paraphrase Sis. Fannie Lou Hamer, “When Are We Going To Be Sick & Tired Of Being Sick & Tired???”

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