Monday, November 16, 2015

Cops' lives suck: FBI kills Peltier art installation

Our Lady of the Arroyo took me to Bridge of Spies yesterday: a film that reminds viewers just how fucked up the American justice system can be.

Leonard Peltier is a Prisoner of War.
Born in Grand Forks, North Dakota, Peltier attended school in Flandreau, South Dakota and lived in Washington state for years. He has denied being involved in the execution-style killing of the FBI Special Agents Jack Coler and Ronald Williams. But his accounts have varied and in his 1999 memoir, admits he shot his rifle during the shoot-out with the FBI agents while saying he didn't hit them. His son, Chauncey Peltier, said there is no evidence his father killed anyone. He has been exhibiting his father's paintings around the country to raise awareness about his father's attempt to gain a presidential pardon. [Pierre Capital Journal]
There is little doubt that South Dakota's attorney general, Marty Jackley, is grasping at the straws propping up the Janklow legacy after the Wounded Knee standoff that made Leonard Peltier a prisoner of war.

The opening of cell doors for some people convicted under federal law came up in an interview with Huffington Post.
President Barack Obama plans to grant clemency to federal offenders "more aggressively" during the remainder of his presidency, he said in a sit-down interview with The Huffington Post on Friday. "If we can get some action done at the federal level, that will make a difference in terms of how, I think, more and more states recognize it doesn't make sense for us to treat nonviolent drug offenses the way we do," Obama said. Commutations grant federal prisoners early release. [excerpt, Obama: I'll Use Clemency Power 'More Aggressively']
Calls of executive clemency for Peltier have been getting louder and a plea for his release sits at the tip of President Obama's pen.
Through 6 former Presidents and President Obama's 1st term in Office, Millions of Individuals world-wide (including Judges, Attorneys, Statesmen & Dignitaries) have rallied in support of Clemency for Wrongly Incarcerated Native American Human Rights/Environmental Rights Activist Leonard Peltier. [petition]
Only one American Indian was pardoned under the Bush regime. ProPublica's Dafna Linzer and Jennifer LaFleur reveal mostly unsurprising results (to me) of a study co-published in the Washington Post. Here is an excerpt from the first of two articles:
Blacks have had the poorest chance of receiving the president's ultimate act of mercy, according to an analysis of previously unreleased records and related data. Current and former officials at the White House and Justice Department said they were surprised and dismayed by the racial disparities, which persist even when factors such as the type of crime and sentence are considered. Obama officials believed changes in the pardon system could be made by executive order.
Former GOP South Dakota legislator, Steve Hickey of Sioux Falls has given voice to executive clemency for Peltier.

Leonard Peltier should be pardoned this year, Mr. President.

Photo: Last Real Indians.

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