Slaughter in the Bronx

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Posted by Mark Riley on February 11, 1999 at 09:17:38:

from EUR GET REAL by Mark Riley

Slaughter in the Bronx

By now, most have heard about the police murder of a 22
year old Guinean in the Bronx, New York. Amadou Diollo came
to America for the same reason millions of immigrants have since
the nation's founding. Unarmed, and having on his person a beeper
and wallet, Amadou Diollo died a horrible death at the hands of four
cops whose motives are known only to themselves. Pit bulls are
treated better by the NYPD. To date, there have been two large
demonstrations demanding justice in Amadou Diollo's death.
It is, however, no longer a local problem. If other men and
women of color are to be spared his fate, the black community
must unite, think strategically, and make cities and towns across
the country pay for tolerating brutal police.
A clear example of the distinction between the races as far
as New York City police are concerned is as follows. Several years
ago, an armed white man shot and killed a complete stranger at the
Radio City studios of NBC. The man possessed a rifle, and had
killed. Yet the NYPD disarmed and arrested him without a single
shot being fired. Contrast this behavior with that of the officers in
this case, or, for that matter, the cops who apparently shot it out
with themselves and charged ODB with trying to kill them. Across
the river in New Jersey, a state trooper has filed a lawsuit against
his own police force, saying racial profiling was not only tolerated
but expected.

When challenged, cops usually close ranks and make it seem
as like those who question there brutal behavior (or in the Diollo
case their humanity) are paranoid, or race baiters. They know better,
and so should we. The way to stop police brutality nationwide is not
through violence, or even protest marches. Our community's best
legal minds must come together and file a class action lawsuit
charging systematic violation of Black people's right to equal
protection under the law. Suits must be filed in every state where
acts of brutality have taken place, which in essence means all fifty.
Brutal cops don't fear Black rage, but those who employ them
certainly fear bankruptcy. Those quislings in Congress who have
been talking about how sacred the Constitution is should be put
on the spot to join these lawsuits as friends of the court.
After all, Black life should certainly be as important
as a sexual harassment lawsuit.

Please send comments to:
Get Real! With Mark Riley…©1999

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