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Wednesday, April 01, 2009
Texas-Style Justice and The War on Some Drugs
I just received an e-mail informing me about American Violet, a film that is a dramatization of events that occurred in Hearne, Texas. In 1999, 28 people, mostly African-Americans, were arrested in Hearne for allegedly distributing drugs. There was a similar situation in Tulia, Texas the next year. In both cases, the raids were motivated by corrupt local officials who were interested in obtaining federal fund; hey, if a few black people are wrongly convicted--hey, you can't make an omelet without breaking a few eggs. Along with American Violent, there is a feature film by John Singleton on the Tulia case, Tulia, that will released later this year (it stars Billy Bob Thornton and Halle Berry).
The War on Some Drugs in Texas is a national disgrace. More recently, there is the case of blacks being singled out and having their money and property seized in Tenaha, Texas. It sure as fuck didn't help having George Chucklehead Bush as governor for eight years. I wrote the following when Bush called Rush Limbaugh "a great American" after it was disclosed that El Rushbo used enough hillbilly heroin to get all of Appalachia high: "[W]hen Bush ran for governor, he shamelessly demagogued against Governor Richard’s programs to help nonviolent drug offenders with treatment instead of harsh sentences. Bush called it 'Penal Code Lite.' For drug offenders who don’t do Bush’s political dirty work like Limbaugh, Bush has one terse thought: 'Incarceration is rehabilitation.'"
UPDATE: Here's a scene from American Violet: