Franklin marchers support ‘Jena Six’

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 26, 2007

About 60 marchers trekked from Councill Drive to College Drive in Franklin on Monday afternoon to raise awareness of a racially charged case in Jena, La., in which six teens have been accused of assaulting another.

Dr. Peggy Scott of the Fellowship Around the Word Church addressed the walkers, who joined in a demonstration to protest the treatment of the Louisiana teens, known as The Jena Six.

These are excerpts from her speech.

Why do we in Franklin care about the Jena 6 in Jena, La.?

* We care because Franklin in comparison to Jena is also a small town with racial concerns;

* We care because as African-Americans we share some of the same concerns about the justice system;

* Because if it happened in Jena it can happen here;

* Because some people want to make it completely a black and white issue when it is an issue about injustice;

* Because until we as Americans understand that injustice for one is an injustice for all it may be your son next time;

* Because we know the message behind the three nooses;

* Because a young man’s life is about to be altered for the rest of his life;

* Because it reminds me of what was reported as an overzealous prosecutor in North Carolina and now there is an over zealous prosecutor in Louisiana who may well alter [the lives of the six];

* Because it’s just not right and even small rural Franklin has some people who care, and is praying for justice to reign from the mountain tops to Louisiana.

FEMA and the federal government let a lot of people down in the aftermath of Katrina.

If I could speak to the Justice Department, I would say to them, don’t let Jena 6 down;

* Because I remember how I felt walking through the Norfolk Airport and heard that the former governor of Virginia, Doug Wilder, had the courage to pardon/release a talented athlete [Allen Iverson] from further imprisonment over a bowling alley incident.

Finally, remember, prayer changes things.