CNN NEWS RELEASE - Racist Labor Day parade float draws fire in New York, September 10, 1998 . Web posted at: 8:22 p.m. NEW YORK (AP) -- A New York City neighborhood whose Labor Day parades over the years have included floats poking fun at Jews, gays and Asians has come under fire this time for a display lampooning the dragging death of a black man in Texas. The float featured men in blackface and has sparked outrage, from Mayor Rudolph Giuliani to residents of the Broad Channel neighborhood in the borough of Queens. "When I saw it on the news, I cried," Dan Turbridy, a longtime Broad Channel resident, said Thursday. "Nothing like this has ever happened." Many of the 2,200 or so residents of the predominantly white community say they did not see the float. Some fear those responsible could turn their neighborhood into the city's latest symbol of racial intolerance. "I've been living here for nine years, and I've never seen anything as drastically disgraceful as that," said Michael Shea, president of the Broad Channel Athletic Club. Amateur videotape of Monday's parade aired by WCBS-TV shows about a dozen white men in blackface wearing Afro-style and dreadlock wigs, and riding on or marching alongside a green pickup truck. The float featured a banner reading, "Black to the Future 2098." One of the men clings to the rear bumper and is dragged slowly along the parade route, as if to mock the slaying earlier this year. BACK
This is how Microsoft Publisher 98 (Bill Gates) has us listed in "animals Categories". All you do is type the word "Monkeys" Look at the two black couples sitting on a Monkey Bars while the other monkeys are in trees..... Remember, he had the audacity to say we didn't have sense enough to use his product or we can't afford to buy Microsoft anything. Now shall we let him get away with this? No... He's offering to give anyone who has 98 Publisher a funky Publisher 2000. Will this solve this issue? I don't think so. If anyone feels like I do then WE need to take a stand, by letting him and his company know, we're not going away that easy. I will join in with MR. JOHN ELIJAH from San Diego California. If you already have it installed and your using AOL (They) can erase it from your hard drive. How? They did me earlier. I had to reinstall Publisher 98 so the picture would come out again. If you already have 98 install and have the CD (remove it) then (reinstall it). Not so fast Bill Gates. You thought you could out smart us. Sorry you can't. We have rights you know...
THIS PHOTO NUMBER IS: ( PHO1456J ) FORWARD THIS TO EVERYONE!
|NOW ISN'T THIS A SHAME.............When is enough, enough? It seems that there are a lot of bigamist in the multimillionaire club. First there was Gloria Vanderbilt, then Tommy Hilfigger and now Bill Gates. When will it end? How much will we take before we make our presence felt. We built this country and we support their lifestyles. Without us there would be no them. Where are our black brothers and sisters? I want to where their clothes and use their inventions. I'm tired of all this backhanded racism and halfassed apologies.|
(note) The couple in that picture should sue the shit out of Microsoft. We all should email them and demand an explanation!
Whites-only covenant shows Bush's true colors Texas governor and Republican presidential candidate, George W. Bush recently sent waves through the black community following a discovery that a Dallas house he sold in 1995 carries a racial covenant, which restricts the sale of the house to white people only. Bush and his wife, Laura, bought the house in 1988. How is this legal? It isn't. The Fair Housing Act prevents the enforcement of racial covenants, However, many houses still carry them as a remnant of the Jim Crow era when it was common practice to exclude blacks from buying houses and living in white neighborhoods.
The Bush campaign responded with a one-line statement saying that the racial covenant was void and that Bush was unaware of it when he sold the house. Yeah right! It's extremely irresponsible for a public figure to accidentally overlook such a stipulation. Did Bush really know but just didn't care to do anything about it? The real estate agent who prepared the papers for the sale said that she notified Bush of the racial covenant but that he signed the papers anyway Perhaps equally shocking as the racial covenant is the fact that the media has swept this story under the rug. Have you heard about it in any of the newspapers you read or on any of the news programs you watch? Do you give Bush the benefit of the doubt?
* Was he unaware of the racial covenant during the time he and his family lived in the house or did he know and decide that it wasn't worth having nullified?
* Should HUD initiate a law that requires all homeowners to wipe racial covenants from their deeds?
* Did the media deliberately fail to cover this story? Do you think it would have been handled differently if a similar story was revealed about a black candidate? If you know anyone who believes they may have been a victim of housing discrimination, encourage them to file a complaint with the Department of Housing and Urban development at 800- 669-9777. BACK
BLACK OWNED OR BLACK STOCKED?? (Long story, but worth reading.)
is evolving so fast, everybody has a site. Every movie
has a URL and nobody does any advertising without carving
out a space in cyberspace. The Internet is so commonly
used, that I predict that by 2005, 85% of the families
living above the poverty level will have a presence in
cyberspace. Family web pages will be commonplace. I can
envision some sites headers now. "Coming in 2005,
www.atterberry.com to a domain near you. Check the family
tree and download relative's baby pictures.
So just who is using the web? EVERYBODY IS. Every ethnic group in America is utilizing the Internet. All the people who don't want to be left out of the loop are making the adjustment. Don't believe any of the hype saying African - Americans are not flocking to the Internet. Don't believe one iota of it. I have observed the African American web presence more than double in a year. If you don't believe me just try to do a search under some of the Black or African American thematic topics that you used to. See how much more data comes up.There is just one catch. Many of the sites that you think are controlled by African Americans are not Black owned, controlled and conceived. I have an acronym for this. I ask is it a BOCC= B(lack) O(wned) C(ontrolled) C(onceived) ?
Is this a problem? Heck yes. Herein lies another disappointing thing "happening" wherein we are not controlling our images and ideas. Yes, I know that there are those who think that "it is only important that the target audience be African American." Some say it is not relevant that popular African American sites be BOCC's. I just want to name some sites, which most people assume, are BOCC but have White ownership. Black Voices (www.blackvoices.com) is owned by the Tribune Media Corporation. Not Barry Cooper! Blackfamilies.com (www.blackfamilies.com) is owned by Cox Interactive Media. Not John Pembroke! Cybersoul (www.cybersoul.com) is owned by HBO. I have just one statement, to those who think that it is not important who owns the Black Image in cyberspace. "If it was not important to control the Black images in cyberspace White firms would not want to!"
I am not saying that Blackvoices, Blackfamilies and Cybersoul are bad sites, they provide great information, but I am saying that this trend is detrimental to the potential African Americans on the Internet, especially from an economic vantagepoint. I remember when Afronet gave space to a White columnist. There were so many people who told me what an ill-conceived move they felt this was. I agreed then, but I ask, Where are your voices now!!
These sites are well financed and whether they make money or not having that cushion allows the worker bees to not worry about if they are making money or not.But how do the sites make money? ADVERTISING!! Proctor and Gamble advertises on Black Voices, but do you think CEO Barry Cooper gets any of that money ? Is he or his staff rewarded with a bonus? NO!! Does he have any control over the way the money is spent on the site. NO! The money goes straight into the coffers of the Tribune Media Corporation. Advertising is the lifeblood of television, newspaper, radio and the Internet. Yes, those sites may look great and have all the fancy bells and whistles, but do you really think Cox Interactive, Tribune and Time Warner love the African American way of life that much? What say do you have in supporting BOCC ? Or the question should be. Are you BUYING BLACK!! The Internet may be the last place the African Americans can control the destiny of their portrayal in the media. If we dont support these sites now, by buying books, music or other gift items THROUGH these site, they eventually will go out of business. Next time you decide to buy something on the Internet, take the time to pull up a BOCC site and then buy the item or recommend to the site owner that he or she should carry that item, its not as hard as you might think. Anything you can buy at Yahoo!, you can buy on any BOCC site.
My hypothesis is that in five years Whites will either own or become the significant contributors to the majority of the most popular "Black" websites. These people realize that to be able to control access to data and what data people receive is critical to controlling them. Since the Internet is nothing more than a whole bunch of computers networked together, it has allowed Black folk to meet and express ideas without interference from Whites as you have with television, radio, and other media. During the days of chattel slavery it was a no-no for Blacks to meet up and discuss ideas. Even in Africa, colonial European efforts combined to prevent African People from communicating without their presence. Although many African countries have their independence now, the colonizing groups still exert a lot of influence over their radio and television programming. Nowadays Black people can legally congregate in most places on the globe. It is still discouraged like it is in my hometown of New York City, but its just more subtle.
I remember some years ago I was home from college for winter break and I was accosted by police for simply walking with too many other African American males at night. We were on the sidewalk and they were riding in the street. They blared their sirens and rode their vehicles on the sidewalk blocking our path. They got out of the car with hands on their guns and told us to get up against the wall. We were orderly, quiet and had committed no crime, but we were Black, all male and there was 20 of us. There was only two of them initially, but by the time it was all over, there was a 1 to 1 ratio of Black males to police officers. Nobody got arrested, although due to my outrage over being stopped, I came close. Their mission was to give us the "subtle" message, "this is what happens when we see too many of you people together." The sergeant who arrived on the scene said we were stopped because we were reported being disorderly by a 911 caller. Likely story. Twenty Black people were together doing nothing but "shooting the breeze," but for this white woman, it was a frightening scene. Just think about the fear that the Internet represents when you have millions of people who come together in website chatrooms, post to message boards, read the ideas of other people who look like them. It gets even scarier if some of these people aim to do more than "shoot the breeze" but instead talk about legitimate social issues like the murder of unarmed African emigrant Ahmed Diallo at the hands of the New York City Cops. Eventually this sort of linkage could spill over into "activism." There has to be a medium to dilute or control the way people interpret national, global or local events. These types of questions posed by the site administrators on the message boards and the site survey questionnaire, which downplay race as a factor are examples of the little things which a White controlled site is more likely to do. To those who feel the need to monitor us, the Internet is no exception. The best way to do this is to use a "Black Face/person" as the visible site person. Another example might be in the case of a movie, or T.V. series that Blacks feel is worthy of boycott. The white site is not likely to endorse a boycott and takes the route of "let's all watch the show before we judge it prematurely, lets see how it represents "us," as one White owned Black series did with the short-lived television sitcom "The Secret Diary of Desmond Pfieffer," which burlesqued slavery and virtually made a joke of the horrible life that African people enslaved in the Western Hemisphere experienced.
You would never see that sort of nonsense done with other human tragedies like the Jewish Holocaust. Thank God we were smart enough to recognize that this show could not continue to air with our economic support. I could draw thousands of analogies of ways, in which these websites are likely to subtly use subversive methods to control black frustration and rage, but I feel that portion of my conveyance should be left to your own imagination. I am sure that you have experiences which would allow you to recall or draw your own examples. Although there is a small upside. I think the phenomenon of Black websites controlled by whites can actually wind up being very educational. There is a lot of information being circulated which passes itself off as legitimate data simply because it was done by a Black person without careful attention being paid to the actual content of that data. More so I believe that regardless of the race of the author, the work the individual does should be viewed on its scholastic merit. Scholarship can not be quantified simply by race; cyber-browsers should go further with information they receive on the web even when Blacks control the website. If Black people realize that the data they are receiving may be an interpretation from a White controlled perspective (as are 95% of the other media and communication outlets) they may dig deeper and go further with the data and discover that the data they received is erroneous. If the ambiguity of website ownership causes cyber-browsers to do a double take at the information they receive, then in my opinion it is a good thing. Many Black people too easily accept information on the basis that the author is Black or has a cultural or ethnic sounding name. I have seen information appear on BOCC sites which was more detrimental in its propaganda than stuff that normally receives a red flag on White media outlets.
Take for example the recently released "Encarta Africana" Encyclopedia released by Microsoft. This double CD package has been billed as the first comprehensive work on African culture and history throughout the Diaspora and Africa. The brain children behind this project are Henry Louis "Skip" Gates Jr., Chairman of Afro-American Studies and Kwame Anthony Appiah, professor of Afro-American Studies and Philosophy. Both of these men are Black and have a following among various groups in the Black community. I have read interviews with them and about them which makes me worry what they have done with the original efforts of W.E.B. Dubois to produce this Encyclopedia. Dubois moved to Ghana in 1961 to establish the Secretariat of the Encyclopedia Africana, but he died before it was completed. There is a lot of criticism from sources regarding the efforts by Gates and Appiah. I do know that the Secretariat in Ghana totally disassociated Dubois original project from their effort. The teacher in me forced me to go through the lesson plans for educators at www.encarta.msn.com/schoolhouse. In our efforts to learn more about other white sites we spoke to John Pembroke of Black Families.com which is owned by Cox Interactive. He was quite evasive about providing information about the staff, page views and amount of money Cox invested. Johns official position is Brand Manager (now whats that) ? He is not the CEO, CFO, COO or even the founder. So you know he answers to someone else. Are all of these H.N.I.C. executives selling us out? Even the recent BET venture is still partially white owned. Why?
The bottom line is that you should know which sites are created by Black efforts or White efforts. You should check it out for yourself. You might be surprised by what you will find. Just remember when you spend your money, are you handing it over to the white man or are you buying black? With the Internet, believe me folks, WE HAVE A CHOICE!!
CompuUSA Computer store (First Microsoft now this?? )
Usually Tavis comes on and alerts everyone about something that gravely affects or will affect the African American Community if action is not taken. Lately, Tavis has been talking about CompUSA. The issue with them is they spent $25 million in advertising last year, of which not not one dime was spent on Black radio. According to the Tom Joyner morning show, research shows that Blacks total purchases for computers and other related items totaled $1 billion. It is obvious that Blacks ARE contributing and a portion of that (CompUSA will not release this information) is probably going to CompUSA. However, CompUSA won't even spend one penny of their revenue on Black advertising. As a result of this, Tavis Smiley and Tom Joyner are asking the listening audience to send COPIES of all receipts of items that were purchased at CompUSA to Tom Joyner in hopes of finding out how much we spend at this particular store.
Additionally, I was really upset when Tavis came on this morning to share a letter that was sent to him from the Director of CompUSA. The letter was not only poorly written, containing several grammatical errors, but it stated a blatant racial slur. A part of the letter stated, "If Minorities would focus on bringing their stores up to comparable standards to non-Minority stores, then we could go to our own stores and not have to go to stores like CompUSA". Okay, if this enraged you more than me then spread the word to your friends, family, co-workers, EVERYBODY you know who may have made purchases from CompUSA. We need to pull together and do something about this foolishness CompUSA is dishing out, obviously not threatened at all by the Black community. Even if you haven't made any purchases from them at least pass the word along and please don't put any more money into this store because obviously they don't think we are worth investing their money in. Send your receipts to: Tom Joyner ,13725 Montfort Drive ,Dallas, TX 75240
Peace and Love, (Originator unknown)
Now Chaz's 2 cents - If you dont notice more large industries are making it harder for Minorities to access the internet and computing or insult them when they are online. Making it hard to access this wealth of information will make it easy for them to control and keep us "in place." First Microsoft with the "Monkeys" and now CompUSA. I WILL NOT tolerate or patronize a business that wants to take my dollar and insult me at the same time. Simply stated with the utmost of sincerity.. DONT PATRONIZE THEM AT ALL, and EMAIL them at COMPUSA to tell them that they can write off your business forever. Lets see if we can make a MAJOR dent in this companies profits. I also would LOVE it if you put a link in that email back to CHAZNET or just let em know where ya got it from. Its gonna get worse if we keep letting this slide. At least click the link and send them a comment.. let them know YOU wont take it and will hurt them with your money. Y2K, dont let it take off without us.
HATE LETTER TO UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND
Once again we have to deal with more unnecessary bullshit! This is sent everyone, regardless of race because everyone needs to know that this shit still exists! Instead of sheets, they are wearing suits!!! FACE REALITY! Too bad they couldn't write a more decent threat without grammatical errors! This is the actual letter that was sent to the U of MD student union. This is so crazy!!!! Editor's Note: This is the full, unedited copy of the letter sent to the Black Student Union at the University of Maryland College Park. Some names are witheld by request, but the letter's grammar and spelling is unedited. This letter contains content that may be offensive. Please read at your own discretion. Nigga Student Union,We guess that you dirty nigga's think you can just say and do anything you want. You think you can take what is ours. You dirty nigga's got your nigga accountant, nigga engineer, nigga business, nigga politics groups and you think you can take what we have too. Since that nigga whore bitch sga imitation president got into office yall think you got some power. But the judge and jury have decided. The sweep will begin in College Park on judgement day. We are taking back what you dirty rotten nigga's think is yours.All we be convicted for their part. Dirty rotten [name withheld] and [name withheld] will have to pay. But it will begin with that whore bitch Camille Adams. She thinks she can rally against our brothers who are trying to get you nigga's under control. She will be destroyed and any chances of having any little niglets will end. You niggas can't even control your whore bitches. But her dirty rotten tongue will teach all you niggas a lesson. No marchs, no rally's, and no sit-in will prevent the coming of judgement day. You niggas are out of control. And we are taking back what's yours. You will not be able to run because the sweep will catch all you dirty niggas. Judgement Day will bring rest to all this turmoil. Die niggas die THE DAY FOR ALL YOU NIGGA'S TO ANSWER IS COMING. THERE WILL BE NO WHERE TO RUN AND NO WHERE TO HIDE. BECAUSE ALL YOU NIGGA'S ARE DESTINED TO DIE. THE JURY IS END AND NONE OF YOU NIGGAS WILL WIN. UMCP WILL START THE SWEEP AND ALL OTHER FOLLOWERS WILL REPEAT. DIE NIGGA'S DIE. DIE NIGGA'S DIE. DIE NIGGA'S DIE. YOU CAN NOT PREPARE FOR THE DAY WILL NOT BE ANNOUNCED BUT YOU WILL ALL DIE BYTHE HANDS OF THE JUDGE AND JURY. DAY TIME NIGHT TIMEEVERYTIME IS THE RIGHT TIME. DIE NIGGA'S DIE.
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the full, unedited copy of the letter sent to SGA President Juliana Njoku, BSU Executive Administrative Officer Camille Adams and the Afro-American studies department.
NYPD COPS NOT GUILTY ?? Click image
ALBANY, N.Y. (Reuters) - Four white New York City police officers were acquitted of murder and all other charges on Friday in the shooting of an unarmed African immigrant who died in a barrage of 41 bullets a year ago, sparking weeks of protests and charges of police brutality against minorities. After three days of deliberations in Albany, a New York State Supreme Court jury of four blacks and eight whites cleared the four officers, one after the other, of second-degree murder and five lesser charges in the shooting of Guinean immigrant Amadou Diallo.
Angry but nonviolent demonstrations in Albany and in the Soundview section of the Bronx where Diallo lived and was killed began even as the verdicts were being read in court and broadcast live on television and radio. On Wheeler Avenue in the Bronx, where Diallo was struck by 19 of the 41 bullets fired at him as he stood in the vestibule of his apartment building, several hundred protesters briefly stopped traffic on a nearby highway, taunted police and banged metal gates on closed shops but were otherwise overwhelmed by a huge police presence. In Albany, about 200 protesters who had gathered near the courthouse marched through a residential area, closely watched by six mounted police officers and the same number of patrol cars.
The racially mixed crowd of mostly young people chanted, ''No Justice, No Peace.'' The acquittals capped a year of tension and debate about the mostly white New York Police Department's often-troubled relationship with blacks and Hispanics. It was also the latest talking point in the national debate over how U.S. police departments treat minorities -- a debate that became more heated following highly publicized cases including the 1992 acquittal by a white jury of four Los Angeles police officers for brutally beating black motorist Rodney King and the 1997 sexual torture of Haitian immigrant Abner Louima in a New York police station house bathroom. Verdict Reached On Third Day The verdict in Albany, where an appeals court moved the Diallo trial from the Bronx 150 miles away on grounds that pretrial publicity and protests would make a fair trial difficult for the officers in New York City, came on the third day of deliberations after a four-week-long trial that began on Jan. 31.
The four plainclothes officers of the NYPD's elite Street Crime Unit all testified that they thought Diallo, 22, was pulling a gun when they saw him standing in his apartment building vestibule in the early hours of Feb. 4, 1999. They told the jury that they feared for their lives and fired in self-defense. Officers Sean Carroll, 37, Kenneth Boss, 28, Edward McMellon and Richard Murphy, both 27, said they realized too late Diallo had been reaching for his wallet, not a weapon.
In a tense courtroom, the jury forewoman stood up to announce the verdict for each officer. One by one, the four men were found ``not guilty'' of second-degree murder by intent; second-degree murder by depraved indifference; first-degree manslaughter; second-degree manslaughter; criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment. If the officers had been convicted, they would have received possible sentences ranging from a minimum of probation and no prison time to a maximum of 25 years to life in prison on the murder charge. Diallo's mother, Kadiadou Diallo, sat rigid in the courtroom while tears rolled down her cheeks as the verdicts were read. New York State Supreme Court Justice Joseph Teresi said after the jury announced the verdict, ``the book is closed'' on the case. But within an hour of the verdict being announced, U.S. Attorney for New York Mary Jo White said that she, along with the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department, will review all of the evidence to ``determine whether there were any violations of the federal civil rights laws.''
Sharpton Appeals For Calm - On Friday evening, the Rev. Al Sharpton, who has led weeks of protests and a civil disobedience campaign against police brutality toward minorities, appealed for calm. ``I have been asked by the family to go to the street where Amadou lived to let the people know we have not given up,'' Sharpton said at an impromptu rally outside the Albany courthouse. ``But we do not want to tarnish his name with any violence. Let not one brick be thrown, not one bottle be thrown, not one epithet of violence come from us, we are fighting violence, violent men who would shoot an unarmed man 41 times.'' Diallo's mother echoed Sharpton's appeal for calm. ``The killing of Amadou was wrong,'' she said, but added, ``I ask for your calm and prayer.'' New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, a former federal prosecutor who has overseen the steepest drop in crime in a generation with sometimes aggressive police tactics, offered his sympathy to the Diallo family. ``The death of Amadou Diallo was a great tragedy,'' Giuliani told reporters at City Hall. ``We express once again our regret, sympathy and support to Mrs. Diallo and Mr. Diallo.'' He also expressed sympathy to the officers and their families. First lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, Republican Giuliani's Democratic rival for a Senate seat from New York, said while raising campaign funds in Illinois, ``The death of Amadou Diallo was a terrible tragedy. My heart goes out again to his parents and family.'' ``We must not allow this verdict to divide New Yorkers. We must reach across the lines that too often divide us and the mistrust that stands between us and join in common resolve to ensure that no tragedy like this ever happens again,'' she added.
Diallo's Right to remain Silent as given by the NYPD
Klansmen found guilty in 1963 church bombing
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) -- A former Ku Klux Klansman was convicted of murder Tuesday for the 1963 church bombing that killed four black girls, the deadliest single attack during the civil rights movement.
Thomas Blanton Jr., 62, was sentenced to life in prison by the same jury that found him guilty after 2 1/2 hours of deliberations. Before he was led out of the courtroom in handcuffs, the judge asked him if he had any comment.
``I guess the good Lord will settle it on judgment day,'' Blanton said.
Blanton is the second former Klansman to be convicted of planting the bomb that went off at the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church on Sept. 15, 1963, a Sunday morning.
The bomb ripped through an exterior wall of the brick church. The bodies of Denise McNair, 11, and Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley and Carole Robertson, all 14, were found in the downstairs lounge.
Denise's parents, Chris and Maxine McNair, did not comment as they left the courthouse. Chris McNair was hugged by U.S. Attorney Doug Jones, who fought back tears as he told reporters: ``We're happy for the families. We're happy for the girls.''
The Rev. Abraham Woods, a black minister instrumental in getting the FBI to reopen the case in 1993, said he was delighted with the verdict.
``It makes a statement on how far we've come,'' said Woods, the local president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
``We're mindful that this verdict will not bring back the lives of the four little girls,'' added Kweisi Mfume, head of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, in a statement. ''(But) justice has finally been served.''
Defense attorney John Robbins said the swift verdict showed the jury was caught up in the emotion surrounding the notorious case. He said he would seek a new trial, arguing the case should have been moved out of Birmingham and Blanton's right to a speedy trial had been violated.
He also said the lack of white men on the jury -- eight white women, three black women and one black man returned the verdict -- ``absolutely hurt Blanton.'' The jurors, who were publicly identified only by number, left without comment.
The case is the latest from the turbulent civil rights era to be revived by prosecutors. Byron De La Beckwith was convicted in 1994 of assassinating civil rights leader Medgar Evers in 1963 and former Klan imperial wizard Sam Bowers was convicted three years ago of the 1966 firebomb-killing of an NAACP leader.
But the church bombing was a galvanizing moment of the civil rights movement. Moderates could no longer remain silent and the fight to topple segregation laws gained new momentum.
During closing arguments, Jones told the jury that it was ``never too late for justice.''
He said Blanton acted in response to months of civil rights demonstrations. The church had become a rallying point for protesters.
``Tom Blanton saw change and didn't like it,'' Jones said as black-and-white images of the church and the girls dressed in Sunday clothing flashed on video screens in the courtroom.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Posey added: ``The defendant didn't care who he killed as long as he killed someone and as long as that person was black.''
``These children must not have died in vain,'' he said. ``Don't let the deafening blast of his bomb be what's left ringing in our ears.''
Robbins argued that the government had proved only that Blanton was once a foul-mouthed segregationist, not a bomber. He said murky tapes of his client secretly recorded by the FBI were illegally obtained and should not have been admitted as evidence.
The surveillance began after Blanton and other Klansman were identified as suspects within weeks of the bombing.
The FBI planted a hidden microphone in Blanton's apartment in 1964 and taped his conversations with Mitchell Burns, a fellow Klansman-turned-informant.
Posey went over the tapes for jurors, putting transcript excerpts on the video screens. He read from one transcript in which Blanton described himself to Burns as a clean-cut guy: ``I like to go shooting, I like to go fishing, I like to go bombing.''
Posey also quoted Blanton as saying he was through with women. ``I am going to stick to bombing churches,'' Blanton said, according to Posey.
On one tape, Blanton was heard telling Burns that he would not be caught ``when I bomb my next church.'' On another made in his kitchen, he is heard talking with his wife about a meeting where ``we planned the bomb.''
``That is a confession out of this man's mouth,'' said Jones, pointing to Blanton.
The defense argued that the tape made in Blanton's kitchen meant nothing because prosecutors failed to play 26 minutes of previous conversation. ``You can't judge a conversation in a vacuum,'' Robbins said.
Robbins also said Blanton's conversations with Burns were nothing but boasting between ``two drunk rednecks.'' He dismissed Burns and other prosecution witnesses as liars.
Another former Klan member, Robert ``Dynamite Bob'' Chambliss, was convicted of murder in 1977 and died in prison in 1985.
Another former Klansman, Bobby Frank Cherry, was indicted last year but his trial was delayed after evaluations raised questions about his mental competency. A fourth suspect, Herman Cash, died without being charged.
The Justice Department concluded 20 years ago that former FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover had blocked prosecution of Klansmen in the bombing. The case was reopened following a 1993 meeting in Birmingham between FBI officials and black ministers, including Woods.
The investigation was not revealed publicly until 1997, when agents went to Texas to talk to Cherry.
^MOG GEN BAL
onpassing from u.s. newswire. wdc-rg.
NAACP President Says Justice Is Finally Served In Birmingham
To: National Desk
Contact: NAACP Office of Communications, 410-486-9227
BALTIMORE, May 1 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Kweisi Mfume, President & CEO, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), said that with the guilty verdict of former Ku Klux Klansman Thomas Blanton, Jr., ``justice has finally been served in one of the most vile and vicious murders this country has ever seen.''
However, Mfume said: ``We're mindful that this verdict will not bring back the lives of the four little girls who were senselessly killed in the 1963 bombing of a Birmingham, Alabama church. Nor will it erase the collective pain that this nation has lived with for the last 38 years. I hope their deaths will remind us of how hate can destroy when left unchallenged.''
An Alabama jury on Tuesday found Blanton guilty of first-degree murder in the deaths of four black girls, killed in one of the most shocking crimes of the civil rights era. Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Addie Mae Collins, all aged 14, and Denise McNair, 11, died in the blast of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church.
Founded in 1909, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is the nation's oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its half-million adult and youth members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.