Tookie Almost Took Us
Tookie Williams is a cold-blooded killer. He was convicted of capital murder in California, and is scheduled to die a few hours from now. After a full-court Hollywood press, Governor Schwarzenegger decided against granting clemency to Williams.
Oddly, Rainbow Push Coalition leader Jesse Jackson will be marching in protest. Jackson, of course, is famous for his defence of black "victims" of justice. He personally met with the Governor to plea the Williams case, saying on his web site:
Tookie Williams personifies what “Redemption” is all about. He has used his time in prison to reach others and save lives. We may not be able to quantify the number of children he has saved, but I am certain that there are children in this country and abroad that would not be here had they not received his powerful message.
Interesting perspective. Can we quantify the thousands of children who would be with us had Tookie Williams not started the Crips gang to begin with?
While I am personally opposed to capital punishment-- and I am not a Christian-- I must say this is not what redemption is about. Redemption begins with acknowledgement of one's actions, then asking forgiveness.
Williams has done neither. He simply claims not to have committed the crimes for which he was convicted. Nobody is asking on his behalf for a new trial, nor is evidence of his innocence being offered. Nobody seriously claims his innocence. They simply insist he is a better person, presumably for not admitting guilt and asking forgiveness.
Here is the strangest matter in this case: Jesse Jackson puts his energy into pleading for mercy for Williams, and protests the state's punishment. Yet, in all my years, I have no recollection of Jesse Jackson even once protesting anywhere on behalf of those unquantified victims of Tookie Williams' legacy of gang violence. He simply dances to the Tookie Williams tune of ignore-my-actions-but-listen-to-what-I-say.
Most of the victims of gang killings are black. Jesse Jackson purports to advocate for the black community, yet he has never, to my knowlege, marched against black-on-black violence anywhere.
For whom, then, is Jesse Jackson an advocate?