An Oahu man convicted of attempted 2nd degree murder wore blackface to his sentencing hearing last week. There, he delivered a rant about his treatment by the court and…
Look, this is a weird one. Stay with me.
In 2016, Mark Char was arrested after stabbing three people on the freeway. He claims it was self-defense, however witnesses said otherwise.
In March of this year, he was convicted of attempted murder and two counts of assault.
Char tried to argue it was self-defense. He claimed that the other driver kept cutting him off.
When they both pulled over, he confronted the other driver, when he was attacked. He used his knife to protect himself, according to his story.
The victims testified that Char was the one slamming his breaks on in front of their car. They pulled over to avoid him, however he did the same, getting out of his car and pepper spraying them.
That was when the fight began. A good Samaritan was warned off by one of the victims that he should leave but tried to help and was attacked anyway.
Which brings us to the blackface.
That’s not how that works. 🤦🏾♀️— miz joi (@JoiSays) July 4, 2019
Facts!— 💄Jamillah💋 (@XOJamillah) July 3, 2019
How was this even available to him? Smh— Dammit Drews✨ (@Slim_kisses) July 2, 2019
During his sentencing, Char appeared to have used a permanent marker to darken his face.
In his statement he called his attorney incompetent, and says he was not given a fair trial.
“Now this kangaroo court is trying to give me a life sentence for me trying to protect and defend myself against the attack from three guys ― in essence, treating me like a black man.”
Char added, in his sentencing statement:
“So today, I’m going to be a black man.”
This is a doozy.
No that he should not be treated like a black man— Airmax95Gawd (@Texanstradamus) July 4, 2019
No statement needed. Everyone want to make a statement about my people but not help my ppl for our injustice. Welcome to America. LAND of the free and home of the slave.— RecallSusanGreenberg (@RecallSue) July 5, 2019
My question did they prove he wasn’t attacked by three men. Three to one? His black face was a protest. Crazy but made some sense. Minorities are shot more times than whites— Erlinda Martin (@Lindamartin007) July 2, 2019
OMG. People are actually wild.— jamie (@MudkipMama) July 5, 2019
On one hand, yeah, our country doesn’t treat black people very well. They are overrepresented as the perpetrators of crime.
This is especially true on news media where they are more likely to have their mugshot shown or otherwise depicted as more threatening than their white counterparts.
On the other hand, Char is acting like he wasn’t given any kind of fair attempt at a trial and that his attorney was an idiot. This makes it seem less like he’s trying to make a statement on the deplorable treatment of black people in this country and more like he’s trying to cancel the justifications for his conviction.
It’s difficult to defend someone who is so combative that he attacks his representation and the court itself.
Not to mention all the witnesses who testified against him.
With parole. Hope they let us know when he’s on his he loose again.— AnikaGlass (@NeeterLou) July 2, 2019
Dude, if they'd treated you like a black man, you'd have been shot instead of arrested.— Sharon Smith 🔥⚒️ 👩🏭 (@SmithingChick) July 4, 2019
Man Wears Blackface And Gives Racist Rant In Court Before Road Rage Sentencinghttps://t.co/CUBJhKTFrt
Maybe he just wants the judge to think he crazy...?— Arden Tweets (@ardenrain) July 2, 2019
The joke's on him if he thinks in the American justice system that's going to make his life easier smh— SSD ESQ (@YoungEsquireSSD) July 2, 2019
Judge Todd Eddins was having none of it.
“This continues a pattern of disruptive behavior designed to undermine the administration of justice.”
The judge added:
“What you need to do is look in the mirror. And if you look in the mirror, Mr. Char, you’re not gonna see a black person. You’re gonna see a menace. You’re gonna see a menace to society.”
Despite his blackface rant, Char was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. He also must pay $1900 to one of his victims.
Sentencing disparities were not a factor in this case, they are real and well documented. To learn more, the book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness is available here.