Monday, November 24, 2008 — WASHINGTON, D.C.: The presidential tradition of manic pardoning continued today, with soon-to-be former President George W. Bush issuing pardons to 14 chosen convicted and jailed persons around the nation, and commuting the sentences of two others. Among the names on the list are Paul Julian McCurdy of Sulphur, Okla., sentenced for misapplication of bank funds; Daniel Figh Pue III of Conroe, Texas, convicted of illegal treatment, storage and disposal of a hazardous waste without a permit; Leslie Owen Collier of Charleston, Mo., who pleaded guilty in 1995 to unlawfully killing three bald eagles in southeast Missouri; and rapper John Forte.
Forte was arrested in 1994 after being caught with a suitcase containing 30 pounds of liquid cocaine at a US airport, of all places. He was sentenced to 14 years in prison, but is now faced with 5 years of probation after Bush’s decision to issue a pardon, a decision that, frankly, caught many people off guard. We spoke with an insider in the Bush camp to get some background information on just what brought this decision about.
“It’s pretty simple,” said an aid speaking on the condition of anonymity. “Well, in his mind it’s pretty simple. He said to us, ‘look–‘” here, he lifted his arms slightly, jutted his head forward, and curled his lips into a smart alec yet completely oblivious and dead beyond the surface sneer, seemingly in impression of President Bush– “‘look, uh, y’know.. uh, the people wanted change and now they got this uh, this.. this color–this brown guy up fixin to be presidunt. I, yknow, I’m in a heap’a shit, heheheh… we’re on the playground and erv’body wants to be on his team, so yknow what, rather than be on that court with no team, I’m gon’ git right off and be cheerleader instead. Heheheheheheh.'” When asked to expound on what the President may have meant, he said plainly, “Black is the new black! The new president’s black, he’s appointing a lot of black people to White House positions. Everybody hates the President and he’s trying to fix that. He’s trying to get in on this new trend. By pardoning John Forte. Cause Forte’s a rapper. And black people like rap. ‘I’m cool with ’em now, heheheheheh!'”
We then contacted a man who is currently imprisoned and has been fighting for his release, along with some notable names in the entertainment industry, Mumia Abu-Jamal, who was convicted of murdering a police officer and sentenced to life in 1981. Asked to comment, he said, “Ain’t this about a bitch??!”
–The Impoverished Times