Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Death of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter Brings Back Memories

          The death of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter was front page news in many newspapers on Easter Sunday and it was headline news all over the Internet.  As you will recall, Carter was the African-American boxer who was in prison for 19 years for a murder that he said he did not commit. 
          His story generated sympathy around the world in the 1970’s. It inspired singer Bob Dylan to compose his popular protest song, Hurricane, and it led to the 1999 hit movie, The Hurricane, starring Denzel Washington. 
          The reports about Carter’s death this past Sunday gave me an opportunity to connect with my own past as a reporter in New York City, because they reminded me of the review that I wrote of Carter’s autobiography, The Sixteenth Round. My book review appeared in The New York Times Sunday Book Review Section. You can read it below.
        As a youth, Carter joined a gang and had some major encounters with the criminal justice system. After waging the fight of his life outside of the ring, he finally got through his convictions and imprisonments and gained his freedom.    
     Later in his life, Carter professed his faith in the system that had put him behind bars. He believed that he was proof that justice could be obtained under our legal system. He said that if you tell the truth, the truth will eventually win out.
      Our penal institutions are full of prisoners who hope Carter was right.
Review of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter's book, The Sixteenth Round

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