Axis of Right

Three Native Rhode Islanders Commenting From the Right on Politics and Anything Else

Archive for September 22nd, 2007

Open Forum With Ahmadinejad at Columbia

Posted by Mike on September 22, 2007

He prays in the well of the United Nations for the coming of the Twelfth Imam, denies the holocaust, kidnaps British sailors, arms and funds terrorist organizations, and threatens the to wipe Israel off the map. For this and many other reasons, the U.S. State Department has designated Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a terrorist. For some other unknown reasons, Columbia University designated him as an ideal participant in an open forum where “controversial ideas” may be freely discussed. One wonders if they would have invited Adolph Hitler to give one of his infamous choreographed speeches.

Open debate and discussion is a great thing, even when one plans to advocate a point of view most would consider outside the bounds of reasonableness. The same cannot be said a maniacal tyrant who is such a threat to the world that even continental Europe is concerned. Perhaps Columbia University really believes their invitation to Ahmadinejad was done solely to foster open dialogue. I merely wish that they would extend the same courtesy to conservatives concerned about illegal immigration that they show to a state sponsor of terrorism.

UPDATE: I should know by now to always check out Hot Air before discussing liberal insanity. The answer to my rhetorical question is “yes.” Columbia would invite Hitler.

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Posted in Politics, War on Terror | 3 Comments »

The Jena Six

Posted by Ryan on September 22, 2007

It’s hard to tell what’s really going on regarding the events of August 2006 which occurred around Jena High School in the small town of Jena, Louisiana.  Louisiana has been on the civil rights radar since the charges of FEMA’s “racist” approach to Katrina (no such racism in Mississippi, though, which also has the nation’s highest African-American population, but a Republican governor unlike Louisiana).  I’ve often wondered where Reverend Al and Jesse Jackson were all those years when New Orleans was the crime capital of the US. 

Anyway, apparently there was a meeting tree on campus in Jena where white students usually congregated.  A black student asked if it was OK for his fellow black students to congregate under the same tree.  The principal said yes.  The next day, nooses appeared on that tree.  Not cool.  Three white students were suspended as a result.  Yet, tension continued to rise between the black and white population of Jena High School, which ultimately lead to the beating of Justin Barker, a white student by six black students.  Barker was treated and released form the hospital fairly quickly.  When the black students were charged with attempted second-degree murder, that’s when this whole ordeal began to draw national attention.  All but one of the black students had their charges reduced.  Mychal Bell is one of the black students still charged with aggravated second degree battery, but he was only 16 at the time of the beatings, meaning he was a legal juvenile.  His story has become the civil rights lightning rod, which is drawing all the national attention.

So, should these black students have been charged as adults in the first place?  Do you charge the white students who tied the nooses with a hate crime?  How about the retaliatory beating of Barker?  Was that a hate crime too?  Are 15 and 16 year old students capable of knowingly committing an adult crime like a mob beating or calculating the commission of a hate crime?  If so should they be charged as such?  

Tough issues.  I don’t really have any good answers.  The white kids should have gotten suspended and were, but the Jena Six should also have been suspended with some minor charges slapped against them for battery– that’s only fair.  They did do wrong, yet the punishment should match the crime.  We do that in New Jersey– if a kids gets into a gang fight outside of school, he/she could get 9-10 days suspension, police charges, and probably do some community service.  Had Justin Barker been hospitalized with brain damage, then nail the Jena Six with the original charge, but it was excessive from this outsider’s incomplete point of view.  Yet, the original charges were also mostly thrown out.  Reverend Al and Jesse Jackson have a habit of coming to the forefront with selective evidence (take Florida 2000 and the debunked issues of racism during the original vote and recount) and making a really big deal.  Unfortunately, their appearances to some in white America seem to be becoming obligatory and knee-jerk like two perpetually ambulance-chasing lawyers, whether or not the issue really is minor.  It will be interesting to see where this goes. 

AP photo.

Posted in Culture | 5 Comments »