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Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found

A few weeks ago, the FBI announced it would exhume the body of Emmett Till as part of its reopening of the teen's murder case. Today it disclosed that it had located a copy of a copy of the original trial transcript--missing for decades.

Justice for Emmet Till may be getting closer.

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  • Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#1)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:10 PM EST
    Not trying to be a jerk or anything...but too f'in' little, too late.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#2)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    It feels like a sidewhow to me. Justice for Emmett forty years ago would have made sense, now I think it's a distraction. Smoke and mirrors to pursue "justice" in this old case while our White House pursues an agenda of criminal behavior - plame, abu ghraib, aggressive war. Maybe the FBI should review something only a decade old - how about its actions at Waco or Ruby Ridge? Too soon to open those wounds, we need to complete an investigation after all the principals who should go to jail are dead I guess.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#3)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    This poor boy. Such an awful horrendous story. Such a capacity for hating others - even children. What are we that we did this? And don't kid yourself - if you're American, it's your legacy too. What must he have thought? How did his family feel - unable to protect a child from a hatred born from a most vile and insidious institution that our country not only tolerated but extolled and justified in myriad ways. While I'm not sure if it does Emmet's case or the boy's family any good to do this, Emmett's story is one that illustrates a history that we all have to deal with - if this exhumation and the accompanying publicity allows more young people to know the story of young Emmett Till and the fate that befell him, then I ultimately support this renewed effort.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#4)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    Let those who point to other countries see a fine example of "American Justice..." No wonder the Iraqis think they're supposed to slaughter each other over ideology...who's teaching them?

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#5)
    by nolo on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    How did his family feel - unable to protect a child from a hatred born from a most vile and insidious institution that our country not only tolerated but extolled and justified in myriad ways.
    One indication of how the family felt was that Emmett's mother insisted on an open-casket funeral so that the world could see what had been done to her son. Timelines and other background facts can be found here.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#6)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    That's true, Nolo and an incredibly brave act by that mother, who I'm sure went to her grave with that picture of her son in her head.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#7)
    by kdog on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    At this slow rate of justice, maybe the feds will get around to bringing Amadou Diallo's murderers to justice in 2050 or so.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#8)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    "Justice for Emmet Till may be getting closer." Huh? How do you offer "justice" to a person who's dead? The guys who admitted to killing him are dead. Is someone aware of others being involved who are still living and could be convicted by evidence from an autopsy? mfox, while I understand your emotional response to this topic, I suggest that you may choose to wallow in guilt for being American if you like, but please don't lecture us that we should do the same. Racism is not an American invention, it is a human failing. All humans are inherently racist. Some of us are able to rise above it, others cannot. The Till murder is no more our legacy than any other hateful action committed by one human on another anywhere in the world at any time in history is.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#9)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    Your point is well taken, sarcastic. However I would argue that our history of Slavery and reconstruction is, in fact, a uniquely American failing in that we perpetuated this system, not as tribal warriors or feudal landlords, but as a civilized and enlightened model for democracy still coveted by the world. I don't think the point is to feel guilty. The point is to recognize and acknowledge our past in a way that allows us to move forward without these festering wounds becoming inflamed by ignorance. To see the documentary of this story is to look into a side of humanity that I abhor. To understand that the condition of slavery was legislated upon Africans over a period of time and justified by religion is, I think, to understand that the perpetrators saw themselves, not as aberrant freaks, but as upstanding citizens of our nation (think Abu Graib Defense). Am I ashamed of that? Yes. To deny is to perpetuate.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#10)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    mfox, we're in general agreement, however this is where I disagree: "The point is to recognize and acknowledge our past in a way that allows us to move forward without these festering wounds becoming inflamed by ignorance." To my way of thinking, wounds become inflamed when they're picked at, if you address them and leave them alone they heal as much as they will. imo, absent any real chance of getting a conviction due to the autopsy, I consider this whole undertaking, 40 years after the event, inflamatory.

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#13)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:11 PM EST
    Nothing wrong with healthy discussion and disagreement Sarcastic. That's why I put ideas out there. I think this is the first thread I've commented on Till and the first time I've thrown this theory into the ring. I actually agree with you on most of your points, but feel that the recovery requires an understanding of the hurt involved and communication of said understanding or the continuation of the relationship will be devoid of trust. Judging from the number of people on Dr. Phil (lol) where the cheater says "get over it already" and the cheatee says "Fine but I'll never trust you again" - which BTW is where this country is w/ race relations, to bring the analogy full circle- this is not the outcome that leads to healing and partnership but to an uneasy truce. (* screw the soapbox... not enough time!*)

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#11)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:12 PM EST
    I can see your point about political motivations, Sarcastic. And I don't doubt that politics are at work here. I would take exception to the point that the feelings generated by this incident have been adequately addressed. I'm stretching here, but want to see if this example holds. You may have seen or heard of Dr. Phil - basically a Psychologist who got his start as a fav. of Oprahs and now has his own show. In addressing infidelity and how one can save a relationship the offender often complains "we've been over and over the same thing! I've apologized - but she/he still can't forgive me. What else can I do?" Dr. Phil tells them "you have to listen. And listen and listen, until the offended party feels like you truly understand the impact of your actions - until I know that you know the pain you've caused and how much you've hurt me." In the absence of this process, nobody talks about what happened until the scab get's scraped - perhaps by an old flame calling, or an upcoming business trip, then the old wound splits right open and reveals that an injury can heal over without healing from the inside out - but never goes away in that case. I deeply feel that this same process must take place in America for our race relations to improve. White people have to listen. And listen. Until African Americans feel that we understand how we've hurt them (the we being this country as well as the personal legacy of racism perpetuated through our families). If that means digging up Emmett Till and harassing this child 'til kingdom come, I'm for it because he stands for something bigger, and, IMHO more important than just one more piece of "strange fruit" hanging from a tree. (*mfox gets down off soapbox, picks it up and walks away*)

    Re: Emmett Till Trial Transcript Found (none / 0) (#12)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sat Dec 17, 2005 at 12:59:12 PM EST
    Sorry, can't agree w/Dr. Phil here. I think it's the responsibility of the hurt party to be an adult and understand that the marriage, and/or our society as a whole, is more important than them individually and/or the "wrong" that was done to them - and that the wound is not theirs alone, but rather is part of the marraige or the society as a whole. And since the wound won't heal unless the hurt party forgives, that it's incumbant upon the hurt party to let go and allow the wound to heal by not punishing the other party by witholding forgiveness but, instead, to forgive as quickly as possible, allow the wound to heal, and let everyone involved to move on with their lives. Nope, it is not "fair" and it's not "just," and, yes, the hurt party must be the "bigger" person, but I believe that understanding this, and, moreover, doing this, is part of growing up and is our responsibility as human beings. We've had a similar conversation before, was it on the first Till thread? Anyway, if so, it appears that we won't agree. Such is life. (Ditto, re: the soapbox.)