RACISM ALIVE AND WELL IN OKLAHOMA
The disturbing incident took place following a public meeting that included Mccurtain County Sheriff Kevin Clardy, District 2 Commissioner Mark Jennings, sheriff's investigator Alicia Manning and Jail Administrator Larry Hendrix. The o3cials, who were unaware they were still being recorded, can be heard discussing killing black reporters and joking about a burn victim. Jennings appeared to express a wish the county could return to the days when blacks could be beaten and hung by a local creek, saying that today black people “got more rights than we got.”
“I’m gonna tell you something,” Jennings can be heard saying, “If it was back in the day, when … Alan Marshton would take a damn Black guy and whoop their ass and throw him in the cell? I’d run for f— sheriff.”
Marshton was the sheriff of Mccurtain County in the 1980s.
Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt on Monday called for Clardy, Jennings, Manning, and Hendrix to resign immediately.
“There is simply no place for such hateful rhetoric in the state of Oklahoma, especially by those that serve to represent the community through their respective o3ce,” said Stitt. “I will not stand idly by while this takes place.
The o3cials had been discussing a Cre in which Dannette Stoewe, 43, lost her life while trying to save her dogs from a burning building. Clardy noted that Crst responders had wrapped Stowe “up in tinfoil to preserve the body…”
Clardy tells the others how he had joked with colleagues following the death:
“So we get her in the body bag and Kyler goes, ‘You do know what we gotta do now, right?’ Faith goes, ‘No, what?’ He goes, ‘You gotta pre-heat the oven 350 degrees, leave her in there for 15 minutes,’ And she went [vomit sounds, laughter]. Bless her heart. It was … and then the medical examiner asked her, said, ‘Hey we’re Cxing to go eat.’ And he looked her in the face and said, ‘You wanna go with me and go eat barbecue?’”
The recording was made by one of the two reporters whom the o3cials had discussed killing. Jennings poses a potential solution for disposing of the men.
“I know where two big deep holes are here if you ever need them,” he told Clardy.
None of the o3cials involved were present at a Monday meeting of the Mccurtain County Commission where protestors had gathered seeking resignations and justice, but Clardy’s o3ce issued a statement apparently trying to shift blame for the incident to the reporter who made the recording.
“Many of these recordings, like the one published by media outlets on Friday, have yet to be duly authenticated or validated,” Clardy’s o3ce said. “Our preliminary information indicates that the media released audio recording has, in fact, been altered. The motivation for doing so remains unclear at this point. That matter is actively being investigated.”
Whether or not the o3cials decide to resign, one thing is clear: 100 years has not been enough time to purge Oklahoma of racist violence. (La Semana)