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How Come THEY Are Never Held Accountable

by Oread Daily Tuesday, Jan. 29, 2002 at 9:09 PM

Only US


In the last couple of months Ive read over and over again in editorials and columns in newspapers ranging from the Wall Street Journal to the San Francisco Examiner, from Southern California to the Midwest (and hard from pundits like George Will) when discussing Sara Olson that she must be held accountable, that she must accept responsibility, that she must apologize for her past (which is generally predicated, I might add, upon the assumption that she is now lying about that past). Since Sept. 11th there has been a campaign also waged against Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers in much the same manner, in many of the same places. There has been this clamor about how these and other activists from the 60s and 70s were nothing but a bunch of spoiled terrorists who never accepted the consequences of their actions. This drone has gotten to me. Im sick of it. First off, there is the question of what actions, of who did what, of who is "guilty" of what crimes. Second, there is the fact that many of US did in fact "do time," are doing time still, were punished severely in a myriad of ways including death - often times merely for our political beliefs, sometimes for actions related to those beliefs. But you know what really galls me is that THEY were never held accountable, THEY never accepted responsibility, THEY never apologized. Were those who gave the orders or pulled the triggers at Kent State and who killed four students and wounded nine ever punished for anything? Were the police who on May 14, 1970, killed two young black men and wounded 12 others during a campus protest at Jackson State arrested and jailed? Are they serving time? Does anyone remember hearing an apology? Were the Chicago police who murdered Mark Clark and Fred Hampton IN THEIR SLEEP ever locked up or even brought to trial? Were the prison guards who gunned down George Jackson ever held responsible? Were the killers of 43 prisoners at Attica brought to justice? How about the state troopers who killed three students and wounded 27 on the South Carolina State University campus who were demonstrating to demand the desegregation of Orangeburg's, South Carolinas only bowling alley? Heard from those troopers recently - ever? Were the Lawrence, Kansas cops who shot Black Student Union member Tiger Dowdell in the back of the head and a few days later fired into an unarmed crowd in "hippie haven" killing Nick Rice ever tried for anything? How about the cops who blinded one man while mortally wounding another in Berkley during the Peoples Park demonstrations? Has justice been done there yet? How many of the goons on the Pine Ridge Reservation are locked away in prison like Leonard Peltier? What about the gallant LA police officers who killed journalist Ruben Salazar and two other Chicanos during the Chicano Moratorium on August 29, 1970? Are the LA prosecutors who went after Sara bringing them to court? Any news on the cops who turned the dogs loose on civil rights protesters in Mississippi or the cops who clubbed demonstrators in Chicago in the 1968 police riot, or those who murdered Black Panthers by the score in city after city across this great land of ours? Have any of them ever expressed concern for their deeds. Are they being held accountable for their actions? I could go on and on with this list and Im not even bothering to get into the big fish. I could write of more of the same which occurred in every decade since, but I wont. Why are only WE who fought for social justice, who fought against an illegal war, who fought against racism, white privilege and white supremacy, who fought for human rights, who struggled for Black liberation, etc. why are WE the ones from whom an apology is demanded? Why are WE the ones whom have to give up a pound of flesh? How come that is anyway?

The Oread Daily provides daily (Monday-Friday) progressive, left, anti-racist, anarchist, commie, activist, environmental, Marxist, revolutionary, etc. news and information from around the US and around the world. The Oread Daily was a mimeographed sheet that came out first in the summer of 1970 in Lawrence, Kansas. It was irreverent, radical, spicy, revolutionary et. al. Now, three decades later it returns. To view the entire Oread Daily, please visit: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/OreadDaily
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