Color of Change urges supporters to sign a petition against a "racist" image published by the New York Post in which a monkey is killed, explicitly so that he cannot "write the next stimulus bill."
Many parties have urged that the New York Post issue an apology for a publication obviously aimed at President Barack Obama, but the the Francis L. Holland Blog goes further, urging that a federal investigation be conducted to determine whether persons at the New York Post have violated 18 USC Title 18, Sec. 1751, 18 USC Title 18, Section 373 and/or other federal statutes whose penalties include potential life imprisonment or the death penalty.
Sign the Color of Change petition now, to provoke an federal investigation into the acts and intent of the persons at the New York Post who are responsible for the publication of this piece of graphic "persuasion".
Under "18 USC Title 18, Sec. 1751. Presidential and Presidential staff assassination, kidnapping, and assault; penalties," "any act" in furtherance of a conspiracy to assassinate a person who is president of the United States is a crime punishable by up to life imprisonment or the death penalty.
If two or more persons conspire to kill or kidnap any individual designated in subsection (a) of this section and one or more of such persons do any act to effect the object of the conspiracy, each shall be punished (1) by imprisonment for any term of years or for life, or (2) by death or imprisonment for any term of years or for life, if death results to such individual. 18 USC Title 18, Sec. 1751.
Black political figures have been assassinated in American history, and most every Black person has been called a monkey at some time. However, President Barack Obama, by virtue of his office, is specifically protected under federal statutes against acts, incitements and conspiracies aginst his life, with convicted violators potentially suffering penalties up to and including life imprisonment or the death penalty. The above statute means, at the very least, that even possible conspiracies against the life of the president should be investigated.
The New York Post's own ostensible "apology" acknowledges that the "cartoon" "has been taken as something else - as a depiction of President Obama" assassinated on the street, with two bullets in his chest. If, as most people believe, the "cartoon" depicts both the assassination of a president and the expression and publication of a desire to see that assassination carried out, and perhaps an endeavor to create the atmosphere in which such a heinous crime is possible, then this is also cause for a federal investigation under 18 USC Title 18, Section 373: "Solicitation to commit a crime of violence."
(a) Whoever, with intent that another person engage in conduct constituting a felony that has as an element the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force against property or against the person of another in violation of the laws of the United States, and under circumstances strongly corroborative of that intent, solicits, commands, induces, or otherwise endeavors to persuade such other person to engage in such conduct, shall be imprisoned not more than one-half the maximum term of imprisonment or (notwithstanding section 3571) fined not more than one-half of the maximum fine prescribed for the punishment of the crime solicited, or both; or if the crime solicited is punishable by life imprisonment or death, shall be imprisoned for not more than twenty years. 18 USC Title 18, Section 373: "Solicitation to commit a crime of violence."
With its publication of this graphic, there exists the possibility that the New York Post "solicits, commands, induces, or otherwise endeavors to persuade" members of the public to "engage in conduct constituting a felony that has as an element the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force against property or against the person of another in violation of the laws of the United States". The above statute surely requires that apparent "endeavors to persuade" the commitment of felonious acts of violence must be investigated.
Certainly any act that might be in furtherance such a conspiracy should be investigated by the Secret Service, the Attorney General and the Federal Bureau of Investigation before the object of the potential conspiracy can be effectuated rather than after the fact.
The Francis L. Holland Blog therefore urges readers to sign the Color of Change petition as part of an effort to support an investigation of the New York Post's cartoonist, editorial staff, owner and other participants for possible violations of 18 USC Title 18, Sec. 1751, 18 USC Title 18, Section 373.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 20, 2009
More than 75,000 emails sent through ColorOfChange.org demand real apology, firing of editor who OK'd cartoon
ColorOfChange.org rejected the New York Post's statement surrounding the uproar over its 'chimp' cartoon, calling it a "non-apology," because it did not acknowledge a mistake. The group demanded a real apology, as well as the firing of the editor who approved the cartoon. More than 50,000 members of ColorOfChange.org sent emails to New York Post Publisher Paul Carlucci on Thursday with that message. By Friday morning, that number had reached 75,000.
James Rucker, the online civil rights group's executive director, said, "The Post's recent statement about the uproar it has caused with this cartoon insults our intelligence. It acknowledges no mistake while continuing to attack those who are raising serious, legitimate concerns. If The Post thinks they can close the book on this without taking any responsibility, they're wrong."
Momentum around the petition continued to build as the civil rights organization launched online ads and began outreach on social networking sites. The group expected tens of thousands more emails would be sent through its website by the weekend.
The cartoon depicts the recent stimulus bill's "author" as a dead monkey, covered in blood after being shot by police. ColorOfChange.org is circulating an online petition that takes The Post to task for its apparent ignorance of a history of racist symbolism that depicts Black people as apes or monkeys. The organization argues that the image is particularly dangerous at a time when hate crimes are on the rise and threats against President Barack Obama abound.
"The paper's leaders need to be held accountable, and so far we've seen no sign that The Post cares about the thousands of people across the country who are rightly outraged by this cartoon," said James Rucker, the organization's executive director. "The next question we have to ask is whether advertisers feel comfortable being associated with a publication that responds so callously to readers' concerns."
An excerpt of the petition, addressed to Carlucci, reads as follows:
I am writing to ask that you publish an apology. I also ask that whichever editor approved Delonas' cartoon for publication be fired, whether it was Editorial Page Editor Bob McManus, Editor Col Allan, or another senior manager in the newsroom. I ask that you determine who was responsible and hold that person accountable.
I was particularly concerned by the Post's sole response to readers who found the image to have racist undertones. The callous statement Col Allan issued Wednesday denies a historical reality, and for him to claim ignorance of this history raises questions about his ability to effectively lead a daily newspaper geared toward a mainstream and multiracial audience.
Please publish an apology that acknowledges that it was a mistake for the Post to publish this cartoon and fire the person responsible.
With more than a half million members, ColorOfChange.org is the largest African-American online political organization in the country.