Edward Pratt: Killing of Southern University students in 1972 should be remembered, explained

Monday, 13 November 2017, 10:59:01 AM. Thursday will be Nov. 16, 2017. That’s 45 years to the day that East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed unarmed Southern University freshmen Denver Smith and Leonard
Thursday will be Nov. 16, 2017. That’s 45 years to the day that East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s deputies shot and killed unarmed Southern University freshmen Denver Smith and Leonard Brown. Neither student was near the deputies who were on the Baton Rouge campus, nor did they make any aggressive move toward the lawmen who were at least 40 yards away from them. Both were shot in the head and fell lifeless to the ground. No deputy was charged. Local and state officials, even popular Gov. Edwin Edwards, did little about it. The shootings were followed by a sham investigation, and the shooter or shooters went on with life. Move on. Nothing to see here, folks. The African-American community did what it had become accustomed to doing in the South. It complained, got nowhere with the government, then went on to mourn its dead. I have never put this killing to rest. I try to write about the deaths of those two students as often as possible. I was standing with a group of students a short distance away from Smith and Brown. “There but for the grace of God go I,” I thought. Students at Southern had been demonstrating, holding rallies and meeting with university officials to discuss changes they wanted that included the curriculum, Southern's facilities, and its finances. The protests culminated when some students staged a non-violent occupation of the administration building. Nearly half a century later, Southern University to award degrees to two slain students The board of...Read more
Share this

    You might also like

    Similar