From Teen Vogue:
Black Canary is an op-ed column sounding the alarm against enduring injustice in America.
BY KANDIST MALLETT
AUGUST 6, 2020
… With distance and time, we often come to look at protesters like Williams as freedom fighters and understand that while their actions may seem drastic, they were prompted by something that was worse. While Angela Davis may be everyone’s favorite leftist now, she was on the FBI’s most wanted list and charged for aggravated kidnapping and first-degree murder in connection to a shoot-out that took place in a San Rafael courthouse in California in 1970. Many people reviled her at the time. Davis was eventually acquitted and is now a celebrated professor, author, activist, and speaker.
On August 7, 17-year-old Jonathan P. Jackson attempted to coerce the release of the Soledad Brothers (including his older brother George) by kidnapping Superior Court judge Harold Haley from the Marin County Civic Center in San Rafael, California. The resulting shootout left four men dead, including both Jackson and Judge Haley. Two others were wounded. The event received intense media coverage, as did the subsequent manhunt and trial of Angela Davis, an ousted professor from UCLA with connections to George and Jonathan Jackson, and the Black Panthers. Davis owned the weapons used in the incident. …
Two days before the kidnapping, former UCLA instructor Angela Davis had bought a shotgun from a pawn shop in San Francisco. After Davis paid for the shotgun, its barrel was sawed off so as to be concealable. …
On June 4, 1972, after 13 hours of deliberations, the all-white jury returned a verdict of not guilty. The fact that she owned the guns used in the crime was judged insufficient to establish her role in the plot. She was represented by Leo Branton Jr., who hired psychologists to help the defense determine who in the jury pool might favor their arguments, a technique that has since become more common. He hired experts to discredit the reliability of eyewitness accounts.
In 2020 it was announced that Davis would be the Ena H. Thompson Distinguished Lecturer for Pomona College’s History Department, welcoming her back after 45 years.
Davis was a Professor of Ethnic Studies at the San Francisco State University from at least 1980 to 1984. She was a professor in the History of Consciousness and the Feminist Studies Departments at the University of California, Santa Cruz and Rutgers University from 1991 to 2008. Since then, she has been Distinguished Professor Emerita.
Davis was a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Syracuse University in Spring 1992 and October 2010, and was the Randolph Visiting Distinguished Professor of philosophy at Vassar College in 1995.
In 2014, Davis returned to UCLA as a Regents’ Lecturer. She delivered a public lecture on May 8 in Royce Hall, where she had given her first lecture 45 years earlier.
On May 22, 2016, Davis was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters in Healing and Social Justice from the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco during its 48th annual commencement ceremony.