The Jena 6

Topics: Racism, White people, Race Pages: 1 (319 words) Published: February 18, 2014

Jena, a small town in central Louisiana, is 85% white and the black population says that racism always has been an issue. In September 2006, a black boy sat down next to a tree in Jena High School where usually only white boys sit and the next day three nooses were found hanging in the tree, a symbol from when the KKK used to hang black people. No parents were given any information on what happened and the white boys were allowed back to school after only three days. Another example is, in October, when a white boy was pulling a gun at some black students at a gas-station, claiming self-defense, and the black boys disarmed him and called the cops. The black students were later charged for stealing the gun. Earlier that month, a black student was beaten up for entering an all-white party. In November, a white student ended up at hospital with a lighter concussion after gotten beaten up at a fight at the Jena High School. He had for some time been harassing the black students and openly been supporting the students who hung up the nooses. Six black students, known as the “Jena Six” were accused for attempt of murder and conspiracy, they were in between the ages of 15 to 17 years old and all of them got expelled from school. It took less than two days for an all-white jury to convict the first boy, Mychal Bell. They found him guilty and he was sentenced to 22 years of prison, the other five students faced similar sentences. The case has caused huge reactions and the general public has considered the accusations racist, it has sparked protests and a huge demonstration was held in Jena in September 2007. Supporters of the Jena Six also raised money has been raised money for legal defense. In July, earlier that same year, the Jena High decided to have the tree cut down.
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