Friday, March 30, 2012

  • Trayvon Martin Family Attorney on Mounting Evidence Against Killer & the Attacks on Trayvon’s Memory

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    Over a month after 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was shot dead in Sanford, Florida, his gunman George Zimmerman remains a free man despite growing questions over Zimmerman’s claim that he acted in self-defense. A new witness has spoken out saying Zimmerman did not show any signs of injuries after he shot Martin, while another has reportedly alleged police pressured him to change his testimony to match Zimmerman’s story. Meanwhile, Zimmerman’s family has launched a public effort to defend him, while a white supremacist has apparently hacked into Trayvon Martin’s email and Facebook accounts in an effort to tarnish his image. We speak to Natalie Jackson, an attorney for Trayvon Martin’s family. "Clearly, they are trying to protect their family member," Jackson says of interviews Zimmerman’s relatives have given to the media. "I guess they have a right to do that. But the problem is, they don’t have a right to destroy Trayvon’s memory in the process." [includes rush transcript]

  • Walking While Black: Killing of Trayvon Martin Evokes Memories of Civil Rights Martyr Emmett Till

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    The killing of Trayvon Martin has drawn comparisons to that of civil rights martyr Emmett Till, who was slain at the age of 14 in Mississippi in 1955. We’re joined by Cynthia Dagnal-Myron, a writer who was taught by Till’s mother, Mamie Till Mobley. Dagnal-Myron is a former reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times and Arizona Daily Star who has also spent over 20 years as a teacher and administrator. Her most recent article for Salon.com is "For Trayvon and Emmett: My 'Walking While Black' Stories." Comparing the Jim Crow era to today, Dagnal-Myron says, "I don’t know how much progress has been made. ... [In] your day-to-day life, if you’re an African-American woman or man, you still feel the things that my parents felt. ... You’re still treated the way that my parents were afraid that I would be treated. It’s just an everyday thing for me. So, for those who think that it’s over, they’re not walking in our shoes." [includes rush transcript]

  • "Trayvon Martin Was Ours"–Author Alice Walker on How Killing is Symptom of Unaddressed Racism

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    Pulitzer Prize-winning author, poet and activist Alice Walker joins us talk about the death of Trayvon Martin. "It’s a symptom of our illness," Walker says. "We are a very sick country. And our racism is a manifestation of our illness and the ways that we don’t delve into our own wrecks. ... As a country, we are a wreck. And part of it is that we have never looked to see where we went off the trail. ... [Trayvon Martin] was ours. And I don’t mean just ours, black people, but all of ours. I mean, these children, they are our future, and they have to be protected." [includes rush transcript]

  • Adrienne Rich (1929-2012): Alice Walker & Frances Goldin on the Life of the Legendary Poet & Activist

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    The legendary poet, essayist and feminist Adrienne Rich, who died on Tuesday at the age of 82, was one of the most celebrated poets of the last half-century and a lifelong advocate for women, gay and lesbian rights, peace and racial justice. Rich drew widespread acclaim for her many volumes of poetry and prose, which brought the oppression of women and lesbians into the public spotlight. She was a key figure in the women’s movement and an uncompromising critic of the powerful. In 1997, Rich famously declined to accept the National Medal of Arts in a protest against the Clinton administration, writing that art "means nothing if it simply decorates the dinner table of power which holds it hostage." We remember Rich’s life with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker and Rich’s literary agent Frances Goldin. [includes rush transcript]