Letters on the Amadou Diallo verdict
29 February 2000
I've just learned of the pathetic verdict concerning these undercover policemen shooting and killing an innocent (very young) black boy. I am completely amazed at the fact that the jury didn't take into account the great amount of time it would have needed to discharge 41 shots into this poor defenseless young man. I'm not black and I'm certainly against the death penalty, but in this case these gun-happy policemen (like many of your countrymen) should have been put away for a very long time!
27 February 2000
I am a US citizen and have been all of my life. I can honestly say that I am not proud to be an American as they have showed me that there isn't really anything to be proud of. There has always been a "treat the worker like dirt, and pay him as little as possible, and he is replaceable" mentality in this country. Besides worker abuse this country has serious problems with racism and police brutality that is rampant in big cities like Los Angeles and especially New York where once again racist policemen have gotten away with unjustifiably murdering an unarmed minority—Amadou Diallo. This verdict did not surprise me because, while living in New York, I have seen them get away with this numerous times. There is no justice for minorities.
27 February 2000
To the Editors, WSWS:
George Bush Jr. has overseen 121 executions in five years. That works out to 24 a year, or roughly one execution every two and one half weeks. Like his father, George Sr., the Butcher of the Basra Highway, the younger Bush is a mass murderer. The country can do no more than sink deeper into depravity with this barbarity in any public office, let alone the presidency. The execution of Betty Lou Beets is one more contribution from the Bush dynasty to the tower of bones that life in the United States under capitalism is bound to become.
The clearest indicator of the road ahead comes with the exoneration of the four policemen who killed Amadou Diallo. Interesting, isn't it, that the armed enforcers of the state receive every consideration when brought to trial for their crimes, while the Betty Lou Beetses of this world are not even afforded legal representation in cases that bear the clear marks of protracted mental illness. Like we in the Black community have always said, when cases regarding the working poor go to trial, there is no justice in the penal system. There's just us.
26 February 2000