Tag Archives: Supreme Court

Cyntoia Brown: The Crime of Bravery

Cyntoia Brown is a young black woman who has been sentenced to life in prison for killing a man when she was sixteen years old. Cyntoia was kidnapped and sold into child prostitution, the man she killed was a 43-year-old white who brought her for sex. After the sexual act Cyntoia believe that the man was reaching for a weapon with the intent of harming her. Cyntoia claims is that she shot this man in self-defense.  There have been several celebrities speaking out on her behalf outlining the injustice in her sentencing. This incident took place in 2004 and Cyntoia has been in prison since. Some of the celebrities who have spoken out are Rihanna and Kim Kardashian-West.

My position is not trying to relitigate the case to prove her innocence, Cyntoia has never denied shooting the man. There are people who will say murder is the worst crime a person can commit but I believe that pedophilia is just as harsh. Whoever wants to debate me on my position please send me a message. Cyntoia was tried as an adult for this crime at the age of 16, she was an abused child. People will state this is based on the laws of the state of Tennessee. They will refer to the state because we have witnessed the case of Brock Turner we see how the system of justice can be unjust. Brock Turner is a young white male who admittedly rape a woman, Turner was caught in the act by two students who chased him down and held until the police arrived. Turner was sentenced to six months in jail in which he served three months.

Cyntoia was a child who was raped and abused by her pimp and the Johns who purchased her. My question is why couldn’t she have been suffering from PTSD. We see all the other situations where people commit acts because of trauma, but society generally associates PTSD with soldiers, but this is not true. We all know children make rash decisions, the decisions are not well thought out, and their minds make lack the capability to analyze a situation properly. Cyntoia was not given this consideration.

My other issue with regards to Cyntoia is lack of movement from the Black Feminist and the White Feminist groups. I made the distinction between white and black because to me there seem to be two different agendas amongst the groups. The feminist groups should have descended t down on the courthouse in Tennessee like a hurricane to defend or support Cyntoia. She is the poster child for all the things they are fighting against. I have watched the black feminist go after Nate Parker, even though he was acquitted of rape over decade ago, protest outside of the courthouse during Bill Cosby’s trial. But nothing visible for Cyntoia. Feminist, in my opinion, can not be mad at Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, Charlie Rose and the countless others and not defend or support Cyntoia. The very fact that Cyntoia has been allowed to be treated this way signals that the sexual abuse of children and women is acceptable in our country and defending yourself against this abuse will not be tolerated.

Cyntoia has been a model prison, received her college degree while in prison and mentored other prisoners. For all the things she has been through and will go through she is a strong impressive woman. The sad part of this story is she continues to suffer because we have failed her, we failed her when she was that 16-year-old child and we are failing her now as a young woman.

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The [Meek] Shall Inherit the Earth or The Earth May Engulf the [Meek]?

How come we must pick sides? Remember the Martin Luther King Jr. quote “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The reason why I ask this question and reference this quote is that people have been taking sides regarding the Meek Mill situation.

Meek Mill has been sentenced to a prison term of two to four years for probation violation. There are people on all sides of this topic, many people believe he deserves it for violating the conditions of his probations. There are people upset because some celebrities have come to Meek’s defensive, these people believe their others in the prison system who need the help of these celebrities. There are those people who view this as a mistreatment by the justice system. I personally believe in the latter, this is an abusive system of justice. I offer this to the people who believe Meek is getting what he deserves and to those who are concerned about others in similar or worse situations. If they can do this to an individual who has some success, notoriety, means and minor wealth; what will stop them from doing this to all of us. Instead of complaining about him receiving this attention because he is a celebrity we need to use this moment to point out other situation that displays a miscarriage of justice. People past judgment on the Meek Mill situation without learning what really happened, people rely on the media and the media has proven over time that is not on our side. The media only reports the truth when they are forced to report the truth. The judge indicated he violated his terms of probation by leaving the state without permission, police contact from a fight in the airport, and police contact for riding an unauthorized vehicle in the streets of New York. The charge of leaving the state without permission charge, Meek Mill’s people notified the judge of his travel request and she signed off on the request. The judge later denied giving permission. The fight in the airport, after farther investigation it was determined that Meek was trying to prevent the fight and the charges were dismissed. Riding the unauthorized vehicle incident happened while he was shooting a video, the police were present the entire time, and he was not arrested for this infraction until the next day.

I understand people need to be punished for their mistakes, but the punishment must fit the crime. I ask our people to do one thing instead of looking at all the negative things people like Meek does look at the positive things they do. The media will always highlight the negative, but they will never report on all the charity work he may do, the people he may employ and the lives he may save. Look at the situation regarding Senatorial candidate Roy Moore people are coming to his defense and he is accused of, in my opinion, one of the most heinous crimes a person can commit. As Black people, we have many problems, us fighting amongst ourselves should not be one of them. Any issue regarding a Black person should be dealt with among Black people, the media or no outside forces should influence our decision about another Black person. Remember the injustice you allow to happen to one person, you may one day become a victim of the same injustice.

The Justice System of Injustice

Is the Justice System a system of injustice for black people in America? The introduce of camera phones, video surveillance, and the internet made it possible for the world to see what is happening in an ordinary person’s daily life. There are people who have become famous and garnered wealth solely from the use of these technologies. These technologies have also allowed the world to witness some of the horrors black people experience on a daily. Many people believed with these atrocities being caught on video black people would receive some form of justice. Are the scales of justice being tipped and is being tipped against the interest of black people?

The most recent event of injustice is the case involving the death of Anthony Lamar Smith. Mr. Smith was murdered by a police officer, the officer was heard on tape stating he was going to kill Mr. Smith during the car chase to apprehend Mr. Smith, after shooting Mr. Smith five times the officer is seen on videotape retrieving an object from his police car and returning to the victim’s car. Afterward the officer states he found a weapon in the car but the weapon did not have any DNA of the victim, the weapon only had the officer’s DNA. The officer did not follow police protocol throughout the whole ordeal, but the officer was still acquitted with all the video and voice recorded evidence proving this was a premeditated murder.

There are been several examples like this incident, too many to name, we constantly listen to politicians, religious leaders, and community leaders who tell the public be patient, believe in the justice system, and pray. So far no of these things have been fruitful and the justice system has been the biggest letdown. We have seen so many of our innocent people go to jail on less or fabricated evidence, so how can visual proof go ignored.

I do not have the answer to any questions that arise from this subject but I know nothing is fair in love and war. If you ask me we are at war. We must understand justice will not come from a system of injustice.

 

Please excuse any grammatical errors emotions are running high.