| Bereans Hold Vigil for ''Jena 6''
Gathered around the candlelit motto, “God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,” dozens of Bereans held a vigil this week to call attention to “Jena 6,” a civil rights issue that some consider to be an egregious example of racial disparity in the criminal justice system.
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The “Jena 6” vigil was held in response to the ongoing proceedings following the arrests of six black defendants who allegedly beat a white student in Jena, Louisiana, last December.
This incident followed months of racial tensions that were initially sparked when three white teens apparently hung nooses from an oak tree the day after some black students apparently violated an unofficial rule that only whites could sit in that area.
“Tonight is not only about a remembrance of the young souls that have faced this terrible injustice,” said J. Anthony Holbert, a member of the Black Student Union, “ but also a wake-up call to return to the days of student activism.”
As BSU President Christian Motley spoke, he encouraged students to be proactive, to “…wake up, open your eyes, ask questions.” Those gathered were then led through repeating the mantra and proclamation, “I will not be the silent generation!”
For the following day, students were encouraged to dress completely in black, wear black ribbons, and some even chose to take a vow of silence to recognize what they believe is the silencing of the civil rights of the Jena 6.