Discrimination in the Judicial System

"All are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination." Article 7, Universal Declartation of Human Righs

 

Excerpts from the March/April 1984 issue of The Texas Voice Excerpts from the March/April 1984 issue of The Texas Voice

Memorial dedicated to Charlie Brooks Jr in the Texas Voice Magazine from the March/April 1984 issue

This memorial dedicated to Charlie Brooks Jr that was published in the Texas Voice Magazine illustrates the frustration that Charlie Brooks Jr’s community had with the judicial system in America and the unjust practices of Brook’s trial. The memorial talks about the hypocrisy in the American judicial system stating that the the system caters to the wealthy and discriminates to the poor. The memorial also expresses that they believe that Brook’s decision to convert to Islam is the reason that he was sentenced to death, not because he committed a murder. As demonstrated by the memorial in the Texas Voice and various primary sources, it is evident that many people believe that Brook’s faced discrimination throughout his trial. 

An interview with Brook’s former wife, Joyce Hazard Easley illustrates her lack of trust in the judicial system, “I have faith in the justice system, but trust? I can’t say too much on that one, because I’ve seen people being in exonerated, say for instance in Dallas. They exonerating people that’s been there for: thirty, forty years, Twenty-five, fifteen years of their life.  Well they’re getting paid for it but how do you buy back that time, when I had told you, “I didn’t do this.” Is is likely that the lack of trust that Easley has in the judicial system stems from the discrimination that Charles Brooks Jr faced during his trial. Individuals who have first hand experience with discrimination to equal protection of the law are likely lose trust in the government which which is demonstrated by Easley’s inability to trust the system. 

The memorial in the Texas Voice illustrates that people in Brooks community believe that there is discrimination within the American judicial system which violates Article Seven of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that states that all are equal before the law and are entitled to equal protection of the law without discrimination. It is important that Article 7 of the UDHR is protected because if discrimination is practiced when determining who will be prosecuted, innocent individuals can serve time in jail and even punished though the death penalty.

 

A Letter to Mr. Charlie Brooks Jr. from his Father, Dated February 28, 1982

Letter to Keith Brooks from Charlie Brooks Jr. dated February 28, 1982

In this letter from Charles Brooks Jr to his son Keith Brooks, he talks about how his attorney recommends that a statistician should be hired to determine if Tarrant County practices discrimination when determining who will be prosecuted for capital offenses. If the statistician does find that the Tarrant County practices to be unlawful, his hearing will start on the fact that there was a petition for habeas corpus. It is evident that there were suspicions that the Tarrant County discriminated when determining who would be put on death row violating Article Seven of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which states that all are equal and entitled before the law with out discrimination.  

As illustrated in an interview with Charles Brooks Jr’s son, Derrek Brooks, it is evident that the Brooks family believes that Charles Brooks Jr faced discrimination in his trial, “we know they're executing innocent people because the warden has said it and the chaplain has said it. I think in the chaplain's book he's even said, out of twenty or thirty people he's seen executed, he knows for a fact there were three that were innocent. And one of 'em was my dad.” This statement, along with other statements from the Brook’s family, demonstrates the Brooks's family believes that Charles Brooks was wrongfully accused and that discrimination does exist within our judicial system.

By:Samira Sujak

Derrek's Oral History: https://tinyurl.com/mkh4dob