[sixties-l] Fwd: Protests at Graham Execution

From: radman (resist@best.com)
Date: Fri Jun 23 2000 - 20:19:04 CUT

  • Next message: monkerud: "Re: [sixties-l] Vietnam Memorial and flags"

    >Protests at Graham Execution
    >by C. BRYSON HULL
    >Associated Press Writer
    >HUNTSVILLE, Texas (AP) -- Protesters burned American flags, chanted
    >and waved signs Thursday outside the prison in Huntsville to speak
    >out against the execution of Gary Graham, but a restless peace
    >After a day of vocal protests and cries of ''No justice! No peace!''
    >the tension briefly boiled over for some demonstrators, who rushed
    >a police barricade shortly before the execution was scheduled to
    >take place. The incident ended quickly, with six people arrested
    >by officers in riot gear.
    >Graham, convicted of killing 53-year-old Bobby Lambert during an
    >armed robbery outside a Houston supermarket on May 13, 1981, focused
    >national attention on capital punishment and the presidential
    >candidacy of Republican Gov. George W. Bush.
    >Of the hundreds of people who gathered outside the prison, by far
    >the most vocal and visible were Graham's supporters, who are numerous
    >because of his active media presence throughout his years on death
    >row. Graham maintained his innocence and claimed he was convicted
    >on shaky evidence from a lone eyewitness.
    >When word came that the state parole board denied Graham a reprieve,
    >supporter Ashanti Chimuranga called the crowd with a bullhorn:
    >''Brothers and sisters, we need to come together for this.'' She
    >announced the board's denial, producing shouts of ''Murderers!
    >Murderers! Bush is a murderer!'' against a back beat of throbbing
    >A woman who claimed to be Graham's daughter sobbed in the arms of
    >a friend.
    >While she cried, another protester with a microphone reminded the
    >crowds of the Los Angeles riots that followed the acquittal of the
    >police officers who beat motorist Rodney King.
    >''This raises the specter of Los Angeles in 1992,'' Houston activist
    >Travis Morales shouted. ''We must execute the slave master, not
    >the slaves.'' Prison authorities took no chances, corralling Graham
    >opponents and supporters on separate ends of the imposing brick
    >prison. At one point, around 100 Graham supporters attempted to
    >confront about 20 Ku Klux Klansmen demonstrating in favor of the
    >execution, but the police presence made it impossible.
    >The protesters also marched also out of the prison area and into
    >the streets of downtown Huntsville, chanting ''Free Shaka Sankofa!''
    >Graham adopted that name to reflect his African heritage.
    >Date: Fri, 23 Jun 2000 00:36:49 -0500 (CDT)
    >From: "Marpessa Kupendua" <nattyreb@ix.netcom.com>
    >Death Row Warrior
    >Murdered by the State of Texas 8:49 p.m. CT
    >Some final words as reported by witnesses
    >to the execution:
    >"Black Power! Keep Marching! Get the tapes
    >of them pepper spraying and beating me and
    >publicize them! They are murdering me!"
    >(To Lambert's side of witness chamber) "I did
    >not kill Bobby Lambert."
    >(To the People) "You can kill a revolutionary,
    >but not the revolution. Keep Marching! Black
    >Shaka Sankofa died with one eye open.
    >We must take up the challenge.
    >We must carry on his work.
    >Abolish the death penalty.

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Fri Jun 23 2000 - 23:47:37 CUT