Thursday, May 04, 2006

Mississippi governor refuses to pardon black man framed by state

From The New York Times:
Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi acknowledges that Clyde Kennard suffered a grievous wrong at the hands of state officials more than 45 years ago. But he says he will not grant a posthumous pardon to Mr. Kennard, a black man who was falsely imprisoned after trying to desegregate a Mississippi college.

You have to register, but its well worth it to read the article.

Note also that state officials at the time --yes, that’s state officials – even considered killing Kennard to keep him from going to the all-white Mississippi Southern. Instead, they framed him, got him seven years in prison for a theft he didn't commit. Kennard died of cancer three years later.

Aubrey K. Lucas, the director of admissions at the college when Kennard applied, told The Times that "pardoning Mr. Kennard might cost Mr. Barbour a few votes." Barbour, by the way, is a former Republican National Committee chairman.

"There are some people around here still," Mr. Lucas said, "who think we should be separate as races and who refuse to see the errors of our past. But I can't imagine it would be a factor in his re-election."

No comments: