This Street Knowledge show first aired on October 8 1995. It focused on the O.J. Simpson verdict And what it means to all of us in the 95 and Beyond.
Gregory Lewis - (Columnist for San Francisco Examiner) He said O.J.s guilt or innocence on the contrary to public opinion breaks down upon racial lines. Lewis said that most African Americans think that Simpson is innocent and most White Americans believe that Simpson is guilty. He said that a lot of people seem to ask him why are Black people so overjoyed by the verdict, and he said that his response is that Black people feel that the system has finally worked for them. Lewis said that a lot of people, that think that O.J. is guilty, base their hypothesis on DNA evidence. He said that people are not realizing that DNA evidence can be tampered with. Lewis said that some people believe that the jury is biased for not convicting Simpson. He said that they must realize that the defense job was to present O.J.s innocence within a reasonable doubt and that is what was accomplished. Lewis said that he believes that there will be a backlash. He said that it happened when the slaves were freed, and it is going to happen after this controversial verdict. Lewis said that a lot of writers and broadcast journalist are presenting one sided stories concerning the O.J. Simpson case. He said that he tries to present both sides in his stories. Lewis said that Black journalist covering the case were often asked if they were a journalist or Black first. He said that there is a double standard in the media because white journalist covering white cases are not asked this question. Lewis said that the mediašs job concerning this case is to inform, not decipher O.J.s innocence or guilt. He stressed that the prosecution miscalculated the domestic violence issues with the predominantly Black female jury. Lewis said now that a black man has won, people want to change the system.
Harr y Allen (Member of the rap group Public Enemy) - He said that African Americans are so used to seeing Black people go to jail that is why Black people rejoiced at the verdict. Allen says that it stuns him that people want to change the system to compensate for future setbacks; It hasnšt happened during any other jury prudence.. Allen said that people were sure that Black jurors could not see the issue of justice pertained to the situation, because O.J. Simpson is Black, but there were White juries throughout the history of the United States that has acquitted Whites for some of the most grotesque crimes known to man. He said that many White people were ready to hold victory celebrations if Simpson was found guilty. Allen said that this reminded him of lynching parties. He said that people were into, and felt involved with this trial. People took it personally . He said that he hopes that business will not just go on a usual. I hope that someone is offended by police officers like Mark Fuhrman.
Anita Johnson aka Reign (Rapper and intern for Street Knowledge) - She said that the verdict divided people. Johnson also believes that this trial will create a further hardship for Black males, in America. She said that, in America, it is okay for men to put their companions in check. Johnson thinks that we need laws and regulations that protect and support peoples rights. She said that if Simpson is truly innocent, he has the right to be treated fairly.
Nora Freedman (intern for Street Knowledge) - She said that the case is not just divided upon racial lines, it is also divided upon generational lines. Freedman said that older people tend to think of O.J. Simpson as being guilty while younger segments of the population tend to believe that he is innocent. She also agreed with many of the points of the other guests.