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A Tale Of Prosecutorial Indiscretion: Ramsey Clark And The Selective Non-Prosecution Of Stokely Carmichael, Lonnie T. Brown
During the height of the Vietnam War and one of the most volatile periods of the civil rights movement, then-Attorney General Ramsey Clark controversially resisted intense political pressure to prosecute Black Power originator and antiwar activist Stokely Carmichael. Taken in isolation, this decision may seem courageous and praiseworthy, but when considered against the backdrop of Clark’s contemporaneous prosecution of an all-white group of similarly situated anti-draft leaders (the so-called Boston Five), his exercise of prosecutorial discretion becomes suspect. Specifically, the Boston Five were prosecuted in 1968 for conspiracy to aid and abet draft evasion, a charge for which the ...