Wilmington 10 Receive Full Pardon from NC Governor
On the last day of her term, outgoing North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue (D) granted a full pardon for ten activists who were convicted of firebombing a grocery store in 1972 as part of a civil rights protest. The group, known as the "Wilmington 10," were comprised of nine black men and one white woman who served a combined 282 years in prison. Only six of the Wilmington 10 are alive today.
In her statement issuing the pardon, Governor Perdue said "I have spent a great deal of time over the past seven months reviewing the pardon of innocence requests of the persons collectively known as the Wilmington Ten. ... These convictions were tainted by naked racism and represent an ugly stain on North Carolina's criminal justice system that cannot be allowed to stand any longer. Justice demands that this stain finally be removed."
Benjamin Chavis, one of the Wilmington 10 and former executive director of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, told the Wall Street Journal, "You're supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, but for 40 years, we've struggled to prove our innocence. ... Finally, everything showed that we were framed up." He hopes that the pardon will draw attention to changes that still need to be made. "Some people think we're in a post-civil-rights era, but I disagree with that," he said. "We still have a lot to do."
Media Resources: Wall Street Journal 1/1/2013; MSNBC 12/31/2012; Office of Governor Perdue Press Release 12/31/2012
3/25/2015 Afghan Woman Beaten to Death for Burning Koran - A 27-year-old woman who reportedly burned a copy of the Koran inside of a riverside shrine in Kabul, Afghanistan was brutally beaten and burned alive on Thursday.
Shocking videos quickly spread on social media showing crowds of men surrounded by hundreds of onlookers assaulting the 27-year-old Farkhunda with bricks and sticks and repeatedly kicking her. . . .
3/25/2015 Masked Intruder Attacks Last Abortion Clinic Standing in Mississippi - In the early hours of the morning Monday, a person in a mask wielding what appeared to be a machete attacked the Jackson Women's Health Organization, the last remaining abortion clinic in the state of Mississippi.
The clinic revealed in a post on their website the details of the attack on what is affectionately referred to by staff and community members as The Pink House. . . .
3/17/2015 Vice President Biden Pledges 41 Million to Clear Rape Kit Backlog - Vice President Joe Biden and Senator Mikulski (D-MD) spoke yesterday at a Maryland State Police Laboratory to declare their support for a $41 million budget proposal to combat the national backlog of rape kits.
"Testing rape kits should be an absolute priority for the United States of America," Vice President Biden said, referring to the estimated 400,000 untested rape kits nationwide. . . .