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      Today, I heard something that made me mad and sick at the same time. Great Right is Right words of wisdom "all drug dealers should be happy they don't get the death penalty". They know my stance on Abolishing the Death Penalty. But there were 6 of them and I. When I tried to discuss the Clarence Aaron story - they screamed at me - that he [Aaron] should never get a Presidential signature for mercy. When I pointed out that white drug dealers are four (4) times more likely to get a Pardon - they all, unanimously - felt it was proper. And they think I'm the one in need of prayer.    

       We fight many injustices and look for hereos every day. That has become my life = in more ways than you can imagine. Many of my fellow Christian brothers & sisters give me crap for being a Progressive. The manure they try to shovel down my brain about how President Obama needs to be evicted really irks me to the boiling point. But, when they spout B.S. such as this - I wonder if Christianity is all it is cracked up to be. Being a Christian must mean you are on sumthin; but what that is - now becomes a blur.

      In what is going to become a hopeful national campaign for justice, Clarence Aaron (in his family's photo pic - right); is RE-petitioning the White House's Office of Pardons to resolve the injustices done to him now - more than once. The number 1 reason (outside of the fact that the Life sentence for a 1st time offender is absurd to begin with) - is the fact that George Bush's Administration Pardoned a habitual "white male" Drug Dealer - and inexplicably rejected that of the 1st time offender Clarence Aaron (who never really dealt any drugs). It is a story that will shock your conscience and vex you much as you shall see below the fold.



Sign the Petition to the White House to Release Clarence Aaron


We only need 150 signatures to get this to the White House's website!


Clarence Aaron 1st Time Offender - Gets a Life Sentence

         It is a simple case that became complicated rather quickly. Clarence Aaron was in school and played football. He knew people, as one often does from poor neighborhoods; who dealt in drugs. One day, he mentions to one person, that he thinks he knows of another person - who deals in drugs too. After making an introduction of the two people; they rewarded him with $1500.

         This "finders fee" of $1500, is the sole basis for a Life in prison sentence. No one ever alleged that Clarence Aaron dealt drugs. Nor did Mr. Aaron have any prior criminal history of any kind. However, big sentences get big acclaim. Thus, Clarence Aaron was charged with a plethora of crimes and punished in a harsh manner. The main reason to justify the Life sentence: appears to be the fact that Clarence Aaron refused to testify against his friends. Yet those "friends", drug dealers with much history - did testify against Clarence Aaron; receiving reduced sentences.

GW Bush Pardoned White Habitual Dealer and Said No to Black 1st Offender Aaron

         This is what is so wonderful about America. In a country that boast's about being the greatest democracy on the planet, with Liberty & Justice for All; that justice always appears to be the norm for white people and the exception for minorities.

          You really can't sugar coat these facts. As denoted by Pro Public Org in its story entitled "Pardon Attorney Torpedoes Plea for Presidential Mercy" - a serious fact of apparent racial bias is denoted. On the Very day that the 1st time offender and "black" Clarence Aaron's plea for mercy is denied; a different plea for mercy of a habitual "white" drug dealer with a name apropos (Reed "Prior") was granted.

          What makes the whole issue more deplorable, is the fact that; the Prosecutor in the Reed Prior case vehmently opposed the pardon; whilst both the U.S. District Court Judge in Alabama (His Honor Charles Butler, Jr.) and U.S. Attorney Deborah J. Rhodes openly stated they were in favor of commuting the sentence of Clarence Aaron.

Bush Administration Pardon Officer Lt. Col Rodgers Botched Aaron's case

        It is not easy to criticize a career military officer; especially a Colonel. However, this guy needs to admit his mistake and step up to the plate in this case. His handling of Clarence Aaron's case is nothing short of appalling.

        In 2008, Lt. Co. Ronald L. Rodgers became the United States pardons attorney. At that time Lt. Col. Rogers changed the procedures of staff lawyers gathering pre-sentence reports and recommendations based upon Bureau of Prisons reports to paralegels batching together reports. As denoted by Pro Publica (here) - it states;

For the first 2 1/2 years under Rodgers, however, most petitions were handled by paralegals, not staff attorneys, and recommended for denial in batches, said Samuel Morison, a lawyer who spent more than a decade in the pardons office before leaving in 2010 to work for the Defense Department. He said Rodgers instituted the change when there was a significant backlog.

I Challenge Lt. Col. Rodgers to Admit Clear Error!

      Even President Bush's former White House Counsel Kenneth Lee states that Lt. Col. Rodgers presented a tilted case report. As is denoted that the Lt. Col. Rodgers put the approval of mercy by Federal Justice Butler and U.S. Attorney Rhodes in a poor light. As Kenneth Lee is quoted as remarking upon potential "subsconscious" bias in stating;
Lee, the former associate White House counsel, said Rodgers had presented the views of Rhodes and Butler "in the least favorable light to the applicant."
       Here is a link to the verbatim actual email from Lt. Col. Rodgers to White House Counsel Lee (here).

Contention by Lt. Col. Rodgers on what U.S. Attorney Rhodes said is erroneous
        Given the evidence in hand and the fact that we have corroborative proof of a statement of facts not in evidence. Where Lt. Col. Rodgers states in his emailto White House Counsel Kenneth Lee that;

"As you know, in the final paragraph of the 2004 DAG recommendation, support for a commutation of Aaron's sentence at some point in the futures was not foreclosed. I have shared this e-mail with ODAG before sending it to you and they believe, as does the U.S. Attorney, that Mr. Aaron's commutation request is about 10 years premature".
emphasis added

        Unfortunately for the Lt. Col.; he has made a leap in logic - a presumption of facts not in evidence - that is down right alarming. Here is the actual Memo from U.S. Attorney Deborah J. Rhodes to Lt. Col. Ronald Rodgers (here). As anyone can clearly see, there's no such remark by the U.S. Attorney Rhodes. It appears that Life being commuted to 25 years - means that the Lt. Col. infers that 25 years and 1 day is what Clarence Aaron should serve. A stretch of facts in extreme bad form. Thus I repeat my challenge.
Lt. Col. Ronald L Rodgers

      - Please Admit Clear Error and Amend Mr. Aaron's Mercy case correctly

      Your memo's and recommendations to deny mercy to Clarence Aaron fails the good faith test. You had a bad day, made a mistake AND you must make amends.

 Here's your original recommendation to deny mercy

Lt. Col. Ronald L Rodgers Recommendation to Deny Clarence Aaron


National Effort To Get President Obama To Grant Mercy For Clarence Aaron

        Thanks to renewed efforts like the Pro Public story and others; we have a chance of tipping the scales of injustice - into the right balance. There are many articles likely to sprout up on this now, including renewed petitions. Previously, other petitions failed to garner proper attention. Thus, we are going to ask for your assistance.

        Clarenece Aaron's own family still sticks with him - as this video denotes;

Watch "It Tore the Whole Family Up" on PBS. See more from FRONTLINE.

        Meanwhile, here are some articles and special interviews you may want to read - if time permits. Along with the Judge and US Attorneys remarks (here) is a Memo to Lt. Col Rodgers by his own staff attorney Sam Morison. Co-Published with WaPo - 2 part story on Whites being favored for mercy (here). Pro Publica Analysis of Pardon Data (here).

Office of U.S. Pardon's Attorney Website (here).

President Bush's mercy for habitual "white" drug dealer Reed Prior (here).

Washington Post Story

Affidavit of Clarence Aaron


         It is clearly obvious that a travesty of justice is transpiring here. We have far to go - STILL -  to dissolve the racial divides of this country.

        As denoted by Meteor Blades recent Diary "Hate Mongers - - Trayvon" on the fact that a business is promoting race abuse by selling digusting targets of a dark hooded person with Skittles (leaving NO doubt that it is a direct attack on Trayvon Martin).

Racial bias clearly has played a role in punishing Clarence Aaron.

        If, but for no other reason - than how extremely unfair and harsh is the Life sentence for a 1st time offender who used bad judgment is - Clarence Aaron's sentence should be commuted immediately.

Here are Interviews of Clarence Aaron and others at PBS

"Snitch: A PBS Frontline Documentary"

It contains an interview of Clarence Aaron (here).

       But, add to that issue of the fact that the ONLY witnesses against Clarence Aaron were actual drug dealers, getting lessor sentences for helping put away a 1st time offender (Aaron) for Life.

         Further compounded by the fact that it is clearly obvious there is some inexplicable "subconscious" (puhhllleeaasseee) bias going in the U.S. Pardon's Office.

         And, finally, the fact that the facts were "falsely presented" by Lt. Col. Rodgers to the White House counsel in a "titled" manner against Mr. Aaron.

         Thus, UNequivocally, Clarence Aaron is deserving of a rectification of the multiple injustices and vast biased/ veiled agendas thrust upon him.

          We are supposed to be better than this. The white, habitual drug dealer,  Lee Prior has boasted his release was like winning the Lottery. But that is not what really happened. As pointed out by Pro Publica and other stories around the web - this is what really transpired.

[Reed Prior] had the support of influential family friends, senior judges and the wife of Iowa's then-governor. In addition to petitioning through the pardon office, Prior's lawyer met with Fred Fielding, the White House counsel.

          Even Reed Prior - who is now writing his Memoirs' - stated that he watched the PBS story Snitches in prison and that he believed Clarence Aaron's sentence should be commuted.



Sign the Petition to the White House to Release Clarence Aaron


We only need 150 signatures to get this to the White House's website!

UPDATE - Monday, May 14, 2012 11:39 Eastern;

Washington Post Story
"Clarence Aaron was denied commutation, but Bush team wasn't told all the facts"

     WaPo's story has many a good comment and has a dedicated monitor.

Originally posted to Abolish the Death Penalty on Sun May 13, 2012 at 11:41 PM PDT.

Also republished by Police Accountability Group.


Is Clarence Aaron deserving of mercy?

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