All White Jury Convicts Mentally Ill Black Man To Death

By Sinclere Lee

PITTSBURGH, Pennsylvania (BNW) --
Recently a Native American Black man was sentenced to death for killing three white men in a so-called racially motivated shooting rampage. Apparently, he snapped from the burden of racism in America. Unlike most Native Black Americans, who live and suffer under America’s racism everyday, he couldn’t take it any more and just went berserk by killing innocent white people. Is he really a muderer?

Ronald Taylor, 41, was convicted in the March 1, 2000, violence that started at his apartment in suburban Wilkinsburg and continued at two nearby restaurants.

The all white jury, which took two days to reach its decision, had the option of sentencing Taylor to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Judge Lawrence O'Toole will formally sentence Taylor, but is bound by the jury's decision on the three first-degree murder charges. No date was set for the formal sentencing, which will make Taylor the 246th person on Pennsylvania's death row.

"I feel Mr. Taylor brought it on himself," said Michaela Sanielevici, whose 20-year-old son, Emil, was among those killed. While that is part true and part not true, it can also be argued that racism drove him to do his evil deed, and while no one in their right mind can justify the taking of innocent life, no one in their right mind can justify how America has treated its Black citizens.

Defense lawyers had argued that Taylor was insane and suffered from delusions that whites were persecuting him. At the time of the killings, he was unemployed and receiving disability checks because of mental illness.

Public defender Lisa Middleman said she was disappointed by the decision. She had asked the jurors to show compassion because of Taylor's mental state.

"It's very hard to have faith in a system that puts severely mentally ill, mentally retarded, abused people to death," she said.

Prosecutors maintained that Taylor knew what he was doing when he targeted whites. Even a defense psychiatrist testified that Taylor "had an awareness" that killing was considered wrong.

During the trial, prosecutors showed jurors copies of hate writings found in Taylor's apartment that railed at whites, Jews and homosexuals. "Jesus Christ made a very big, costly mistake by putting white trash people on the face of the earth," one of the writings said.

The killings started when Taylor got angry at workers who were fixing a door at his apartment and fatally shot worker John Kroll, 55.

Taylor then walked to the fast-food restaurants, killing two more men and wounding two others. Next, he went to a nearby office building and threatened to kill white people there. He surrendered after a two-hour standoff with police.

I don’t think a Black American who snaps under the pressure of racism should be convicted for a racial crime in this country when he is the victim of racism, first. How can you say a man is a racist when he’s the victim of racism? That's like a Muslim saying “he's for peace” and trying to kill Americans. What’s the difference? both are hypocrites!

Back to home page