A lynching is a summary execution committed by a crowd.
During the period of intense protests against the colonial regime, which preceded the War of Independence of the United States, a certain Charles Lynch (1736-1796), “patriot” of the State of Virginia, decided to “reform” the way which justice was applied in the region.
A justice of the peace, he established speedy trials sometimes leading to the summary executions against defenders of the British crown. He united the court, recruited jurors, and presided at runtime. When the court was adjourned, the prisoner was executed. The “lynch law” spread in the territories of the American West and developed there to the establishment and consolidation of the rule of law. Its expeditious methods and miscarriages were covered by the Supreme Court. Lynch later became senator. Until 1911, these practices were considered beneficial in North Carolina.
By 1837, the “lynch law” had given birth to the word “lynching” especially in New England where, despite the laws protecting them, blacks were prosecuted by vigilance committees, which give rise to the Ku Klux Klan. In the southern United States, disregard of procedural rules considered favorable to criminals was reinforced by hostility to the federal government.
Despite the two possible origins, namely Charles or William or John Lynch or the name of Lynch Creek County, there were similar processes of expeditious justice in the nineteenth-century in Ireland and Russia where suspects were subjected to minor punishment without consideration of the facts before any constituted tribunal under the rules of procedure in accordance with the law.
From 1882 to 1951, 4,700 men, women, and children – almost one person per week for eighty years – were victims of these practices in the United States, perpetrated in the name of an unwritten law. 1880s to the 1930s, it identifies a majority of black victims among lynched: 2,400 people (according to sources) against 300 white people, during the same period. Most of these lynchings took place in the southern states of the United States. Often, the fact that a person of color “offended white supremacy” became an argument leading him to the gallows. Of these, two African-American couples (Dorothy and Roger Malcolm and Mae Murray and George Dorsey) were killed July 25, 1946 in Monroe, a town 70 kilometers south-east of Atlanta, in the Walton County, Georgia. Thirty people took them from their cars, they were then killed after being tied to trees, after which the bodies were thrown into the bushes.
Following this, President Truman was the first American politician to have openly a stand against lynching, especially as one of the men was a veteran of World War II and Dorothy Malcolm was pregnant seven months. Truman sent the FBI on the scene, but federal investigators ran into a wall of silence. While their murderers escaped justice.
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