Update 2/22/16: On February 19, 2016 Albert Woodfox was finally released from the State of Louisiana Prison System after serving almost 44 years for a crime he is innocent of (but he had to plead “no contest” to a lesser crime which he is still innocent of)…40+ years of his incarceration was in Solitary Confinement; Albert has the distinction of being the longest held prisoner in Solitary Confinement. Leonard Peltier has now been imprisoned in the Federal Prison System for 40 years for a crime he is also innocent of. One Black Man, One Native Man (and too many others) tied together in the Racial Judicial System that is the decaying cornerstone of America’s foundation. Meanwhile the murderers of Mike Brown and Eric Garner walked free with impunity. There continues to be NO RULE OF LAW in America, especially when it comes to Racial/Ethnic Minorities or other disenfranchised Peoples.
December 7, 2014
Dear President Obama and others who should be concerned,
I mean no disrespect but I must speak out. I have no idea what you really think or feel or say to those who are your confidants, but it seems as though you are not truly mindful of what is happening right now in this country…or perhaps you are and because of your role as President you cannot say what you know to be true as it would alienate you from certain factions in this country and in other Nations as well. The Rule of Law does NOT and has NOT ever applied to ALL people who live within the borders of America. If the Rule of Law applied equally to all people, everyone who broke a specific law would receive the same punishment. So someone in possession of say one marijuana cigarette would get the same fine or prison sentence, instead we see a wide variation of punishments from a small fine to life-in-prison. Let me give you an actual example of misguided Justice; Albert Woodfox is incarcerated in Louisiana for the capital crime of murder; he is innocent and has been held in solitary confinement for 40 years or so. The United States Supreme Court has overturned his conviction of murder on multiple occasions and still the State of Louisiana will not release him; unbelievable. Realize that in America there is the Federal Legal System, State Legal Systems, Municipal (county, city, etc) Legal Systems, and Separate Legal Systems for Sovereign Native American Nations; each one has added variances of some laws and may interpret laws differently. Biases of Police, Judges, Attorneys (both Defense and Prosecution) along with individual Jurists also enter into play…and then there is the Media and Politicians, who mix some fact with their own opinions of bias, prejudice, and political agendas and pass them on to the populace as if they are speaking the truth!
You’ve said that Peaceful Protest is a part of what makes necessary changes…and this is very true….but Peaceful Protests are met with Militarized Police and Agent Provocateurs making them anything but Peaceful. The people in the Streets did NOT start this, it was the Police! Since the murder of Mike Brown this past August it seems as though there is now a perverted game of How-many-Black-Men-can-the police-kill-with-impunity. As bad as it has been; it is now worse. And we see that Police officers are immune from the consequences of murder and other capital crimes…much like politicians and those with money and/or perceived power.
Meanwhile we see that some members of Congress are sneaking questionable policies, laws and agendas attached and buried within other more popular policies, laws and agendas into Congress hoping for a “Pass” Vote. With so much turmoil in the streets of America, it is far easier to get agendas through Congress that might not pass if there was less turmoil. I am not someone who plays into the conspiracy game, but I am beginning to wonder if there is some perverted plan to keep the populace distracted with Killing Blacks and other Racial/Ethnic Minorities while the factions in America with perceived Power and Wealth can steal and rape the Land that belongs to our own Native Nations while also engaging in acts of War within other Countries. After all; the word on the Street may be that #BlackLivesMatter and #AllLivesMatter BUT behind closed doors in Police Precincts, Courts, Congress and Bureaucratic Board Rooms, we know damn well that it is Corporations-as-People, Big Oil, Weapons-of-War and maintaining White Supremacy that matter most!
When the new Congress is in place in January 2015, we will see dysfunction the likes of which has not been seen before. There are factions within America that so fear the fact that Racial/Ethnic Minorities as a group will numerically outnumber Whites within the next decade or so that they will do anything to try to stop it; including Genocide and selling off pieces of America to other Countries. Some folks say that there seems to be an air of Apartheid in America. Let me just say; Apartheid is already here!
There are so many words to say or not enough; my head is too full of words and my heart is too heavy. We came through the Civil Rights Era as a stronger more unified country. Your election was what some thought would be a major turning point for this country and an upsurge in Human Rights. And today we wait to see who shoots or chokes another without provocation and then who dies from the next bullet or who mutters, “I can’t Breathe”.
I sincerely wish you well and would not wish your job for the next 2 years on anyone who hopes to maintain their own integrity. As always I Thank You for your time and consideration.
In Peace. Bonnie F. Walker, RN, BS, LNC
P.S. You have a Nobel Peace Prize, how about working towards actual PEACE in America and throughout the World? How about making Human Rights for every shade of Human a priority? How about Granting Executive Clemency to Leonard Peltier and prove that Human Rights DO Matter!