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August, 2006

Writer Clarifies Drug Epidemic Article

Dear People's Tribune

The article I wrote, "Suburban Drug Epidemic Becomes Racial Persecution" for your July, 2006 issue was very well-received. I did notice something that needed to be corrected. Eugene Atkins was told by the prosecutor and his own Defense Attorney that to avoid getting a life sentence, he should plead guilty. He did this because he didn't want to spend his life in prison. But, later, he realized that his plea was messed up. He then wrote the judge to the effect that he really is not guilty and was coerced. So this is a pretty big difference, though the point was still made in the article that the justice system was not serving justice in the case. At Eugene Atkins' sentencing on July 17, he received a life sentence.

The Grand Rapids Times (a weekly distributed paper for the Black community in Grand Rapids) asked if they could use the article for an op-ed piece in their paper, and I agreed. I'm now using the article and the People's Tribune to get in contact with other local media outlets to see if they can begin covering more justice struggles in the state of Michigan. Also, I've been given the first show of the new season of "Oh Say Can You S.E.E.," on Grand Rapids Cable Access. I will be having Rev. Edward Pinkney of Benton Harbor on the show and a member of the Atkins family on September 6, 2006. It will be about the injustice in this justice system and how we can fight for something better. We will be able to highlight Rev. Pinkney's case in preparation for his trial in September.

For the revolution,
Cole Dorsey

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