LESSONS LEARNED ON DEATH ROW

A REPENTANT FOUNDER OF THE CRIPS WRITES BOOKS TO WARN KIDS OFF GANGS

The author's message was headlined APOLOGY and inserted in 250 fresh-off-the-press children's books given to guests at last week's Congressional Black Caucus Foundation luncheon in Washington. "I apologize to you all for the atrocities which I and others committed against our race through gang violence," wrote Stanley ("Tookie") Williams, who in 1971 co-founded the nation's largest and arguably most violent street gang, the Crips. "I pray that one day my apology will be accepted."

The founder's atonement, of course, is overdue. By current law-enforcement tallies, Crips colors fly in 42 states, and the gang is linked annually to thousands of murders,...

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