Despite Police Violence, Catalans Vote Today

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By Popular Resistance. Spain – Catalonians across the region in Spain today voted on a referendum for independence in the face of often severe police violence by the Spanish civil guard. The vote was held even though Spain’s Constitutional Court declared it illegal. Despite being evenly split on the issue of independence, 70 percent of Catalonians favored holding a vote on the referendum as an expression of their democratic rights. Catalonia is a region around Barcelona. It has a distinct language and culture. The region is wealthy overall and makes up one fifth of Spain’s gross domestic product. The campaign for independence has been underway for a number of years.

March For Racial Justice: Thousands Rally In DC

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By John Zangas and Anne Meador for DC Media Group. Washington, DC – Tens of thousands marched for racial justice on Saturday, calling for racial equality, an end to police violence and white supremacy. Black women carried the lead banners for the March for Racial Justice, accompanied by Native Americans drumming. Many marchers displayed messages of disapproval of President Trump regarding his divisive comments about the NFL protests against police violence and his inadequate Puerto Rico relief efforts. The marchers were joined by a group of a thousand Black women who had just marched from the Capitol to join them at Lincoln Square Park.

Calls For Resignation Of St. Louis Police Chief

Protesters Outside of Stadium, Photo by Danny Wicentowski

By Riverfront Times Staff. Protesters marching through downtown St. Louis on September 25, 2017 focused on a matter ripped from the headlines — the treatment of black officers on the city’s police force. Then they called for the resignation of Acting Police Chief Lawrence O’Toole. The group originally assembled at Market and 16th streets at 6 p.m., with participants given blue tape to cover their mouths. Then state Representative Bruce Franks Jr. (D-St. Louis) announced that they would be marching to police headquarters to discuss two high-profile cases involving black officers. The march was a silent one, with several hundred people following organizers in a long line through downtown streets. At the police headquarters, the protesters planned ten more minutes of silence — but after that, Franks warned, they would “turn it up.”

Colin Kaepernick Won

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By Les Carpenter for The Guardian. All Colin Kaepernick ever asked was for his country to have a conversation about race. This, he warned, would not be easy. Such talks are awkward and often end in a flurry of spittle, pointed fingers and bruised feelings. But from the moment the former San Francisco 49ers quarterback first spoke about his decision to kneel or sit during the national anthem, he said was willing to give up his career to make the nation talk. In one speech on Friday night, Donald Trump gave Kaepernick exactly what he wanted.

Any White Cop Can Kill A Black Man..

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By Don Fitz for Green Social Thought. Missouri – This is what has sparked protests by thousands in St. Louis from September 15 through today. In 2011, St. Louis cop Jason Stockley fired 5-7 shots at Anthony Lamar Smith, killing him. Stockley claimed that Smith was selling drugs and chased him at high speed and shot him to defend himself. The story was briefly reported as another drug deal gone bad, and it was just incidental that the cop was white and the victim was black. [See 2011 story HERE]. But the case turned out to be a lot more than that. His mother, Annie Smith, said that “They wouldn’t let me kiss him or hug him goodbye.”

Nazi's Threaten: St. Louis Jews Shielding Protestors From Police

St. Louis Police arrest protesters after acauittal. Source Associated Press.

By Rafael Shimunov for Medium. When protesters were caged in by an abusive police force, the Central Reform Congregation of St. Louis served as a model to all congregations and opened their doors to protect them. The people of St. Louis took to the streets in response to the acquittal of ex-cop Jason Stockley for the murder of Anthony Lamar Smith. Stockley, when engaged on a police chase of Smith was recorded premeditating his killing of Smith. Police responded to protests withunhinged violence. Here is a video of at least 40 militarized forces attacking an elderly woman with a shield, then overrunning her and others under them. Rather than administering first aid, they continue to overrun her and eventually force her up for detainment.

Activists Ask Charlottesville To Drop Charges; ACLU Asks City To Revise Police Tactics

Shaban Anthuman/ Times-dispatch

By Lauren Berg for The Daily Progress – CHARLOTTESVILLE — Activists want all charges dropped against protesters arrested at the July 8 KKK rally in Charlottesville after they say police used unnecessary force against demonstrators, and the Virginia chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union is asking residents to urge the City Council to increase “civilian oversight and accountability in policing.” Lodging allegations of police brutality, activists associated with Solidarity Cville held a news conference Friday in front of the Charlottesville Police Department, asking for police to apologize for their tactics at the rally and revoke the permit for the Aug. 12 “Unite the Right” rally, organized by pro-white blogger Jason Kessler. Emily Gorcenski, who attended the rally, said it was unnecessary for police to declare unlawful assembly as protesters gathered around a garage where members of the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan had parked. She said police did not give protesters and others enough time to leave the area before Virginia State Police deployed three canisters of tear gas. “To be frank, it is ridiculous to expect a grieving community, with a deep legacy of racial violence, to simply pack up and go home after the KKK rallied in our city,” Gorcenski said. After the Klansmen left, some protesters turned their attention to police and followed officers back up to High Street, where they continued to defy police commands to leave the area.

Police Should Answer To The Communities They Serve

After the death of Michael Brown in 2014, and ensuing demonstrations and police response in Ferguson, Missouri, the Obama Administration created the Task Force on 21st Century Policing, which issued a report including 150 recommendations for law enforcement agencies in the U.S. Photo by Scott Lum / Flickr.

By Christopher Zumski Finke for Yes! Magazine – Here’s what I learned: In 1829, a member of the British Parliament named Sir Robert Peel wrote nine principles for policing communities. They include, “the police must secure the willing cooperation of the public” and “the police should use only the minimum degree of physical force necessary on any particular occasion.” Every cop in the United States should have learned them. Carter did when he joined the St. Paul Police Department in 1975, after the city was sued for failing to hire Black officers. He served 27 years on the force, first as a patrol officer, then as a detective, then as an Internal Affairs investigator. Carter comes from a celebrated African American family in St. Paul. His father, Melvin Carter Sr., was a jazz musician (who died earlier this month), and his son is running for mayor of St. Paul. Carter created the organization Save Our Sons, a mentorship program for young men of color, and was instrumental in creating the Juvenile Detention Alternative Center. He’s now an elder-figure on matters of race and policing in the Twin Cities. Voices in and around law enforcement seem to agree that Peel’s rules are good ones. Carter wanted me to know them, because he wanted me to understand that Peel’s Principles don’t apply to Black people.

Minnesota Police Officer Yanez Acquitted In Shooting Death of Philando Castile

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Update: Several hours after the verdict, a protest which began at the St Paul State Capital building, made its way to I-94 freeway where there were 18 arrests, including several journalists.

By John Zangas for DC Media Group. A mostly white jury acquitted Police Officer Jeronimo Yanez of the shooting death of Philando Castile, a Black man from Twin Cities, Minnesota, during a traffic stop. The verdict was delivered Friday afternoon after the jury deliberated for five days. The shooting death of Castile happened on July 6, 2016, when Yanez pulled Diamond Reynolds over in Falcon Heights for a broken taillight. Castillo was riding in the front passenger seat and Reynolds’ 4 year old daughter was seated in a baby car seat behind them. Officer Yanez had pulled over Reynolds at about 9 pm because of a broken taillight. In a patrol car voice recording of the incident, and before Reynolds began her cell video camera, Castillo can be heard telling Officer Yanez that he has a firearm and is licensed to carry it. “Sir, I have to tell you that I do have a firearm on me.” Castillo said to Yanez. Yanez then said “Okay,” Yanez said to Castile not to pull out his gun. Castile said, “I’m not pulling it out,” Yanez then screamed, “Don’t pull it out,” while he pulled his own gun out and shot Castile. He fired seven shots in succession. The last thing Castillo said before he lost consciousness was, “I wasn’t going to pull it out.” Their four year old daughter sat in the backseat of the car. She was not hit though one shot penetrated Castile’s seat…

LGBTQ Activists Blockade DC Capital Pride Parade

LGBTQ protest DC 6-10-17 by John Zangas

By John Zangas for DC Media Group. Drawing spirit from the LGBTQ resistance roots of the Stonewall protests of the late 1960s, an ad-hoc group of activists under the banner of No Justice No Pride, staged a series of spectacular blockades of the 42nd D.C. Capital Pride parade Saturday afternoon. There were three separate blockades representing major concerns of the three groups that they say have resulted in marginalization by Capital Pride organizers and sponsors. Black Lives Matter LGBTQ persons protested the police sponsorship of Pride and LGBTQ war resistors protested the corporate military sponsors of Pride, while indigenous and immigrant LGBTQ persons protested bank sponsors for their oppressive prison, pipeline and anti-immigration funding.

A Q&A About Police Violence And Reproductive Health

To understand the connections between law enforcement violence and reproductive justice, doctors and researchers have to think broadly about how history and policy affect care and barriers. 
 Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

By Cynthia Greenlee for Rewire – Police violence and interaction could be seen as particularly extreme forms of maternal stress. If one lives in a community that is frequently policed, the accumulative effects of these interactions can have health consequences more insidious than those caused by actual physical violence. When there is a police shooting, somewhere a doctor or medical staff are involved. They treat the living wounded, and as coroners, they read the bodies of the dead and produce autopsies that will be scrutinized by the public, the media, and the criminal justice system. Those documents underline that the provision of medical care is political. Physicians do not shed their biases and beliefs when they don white coats. Individual doctors and medical associations have been agents of social change and, in other cases…

Our Streets: The Story from the Front Lines & How We Fight

Militarized police and card players sit-in from Trump Inauguration protests by Eleanor Goldfield, Art Killing Apathy

By Eleanor Goldfield for ACT Out. Yawn points out that condemning black bloc tactics divides us and that we should not limit ourselves to only permitted protests. He asks: what violence would have to be done to you before you fight back? Is that being done to others in our country? Is it being done by the United States to others around the world? With these questions in mind he points out that opposing black bloc tactics comes from a place of privilege, the privilege of not suffering violence at the hand of the state. Yawn describes how tactics must be analyzed in the context of the situation and the goals of the protest.

Anonymous Joins #NoDAPL Fight

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By Brianna Acuesta for True Activist. What occurred on Sunday night at the Standing Rock Indian Reservation was a brutal use of force that showed the true colors of the oil companies backing the Dakota Access Pipeline and local police. It’s been clear which side the police have been on from the start, but up until now the assault on protesters has been relatively mild and spread out. However, on Sunday night, chaos ensued when law enforcement pulled out all the stops in an effort to persuade the protesters to end their fight. Police used rubber bullets, water cannons, and concussion grenades to cause “nonlethal harm” to the water protectors, but the damage inflicted was massive. Police reportedly shot a 13-year-old girl in the face with rubber bullets, vindictively shot a man at point blank range in the belly button and knee caps with a smile on their face…

‘Nothing To See Here’ Headlines Conceal Police Violence At Dakota Access

"Environmental assessments failed to disclose the presence and proximity of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation," stated UN expert Victoria Tauli-Corpuz. (Photo: John Duffy/flickr/cc)

By Jim Naureckas for FAIR – Sorry, New York Times–when more than 470 people have been arrested opposing the pipeline since August, that’s not the news. Nor did the print edition headline—“16 Arrested at North Dakota Pipeline Protest as Tensions Continue”—add anything. No, the news in the story came in the second paragraph, where reporter Jonah Engel Bromwich wrote that “officials also defended their use of fire hoses against protesters the night before, despite the below-freezing weather.”

How We Boycott Injustice And Police Brutality In America

King and Abernathy talking to police during Montgomery Bus Boycott by Gener Herrick for AP

By Shaun King for the NY Daily News. The protests build awareness, be they on the football field, the basketball court, the soccer pitch, or in the streets — but they don’t build the political and economic pressure required to force the hand of politicians to bring about the change. We need to force their hand. That’s why I just introduced InjusticeBoycott.com. On this Dec. 5, the anniversary of when Dr. King and others began the 381-day Montgomery Bus Boycott in 1955, we are launching our own Montgomery Bus Boycott to show every city, state, institution and corporation in this country that meaningful, reasonable, achievable reforms on police brutality and injustice are not our long-term dreams. They are our immediate emergency priority. It is going to take the same type of determination and organization that we saw with the Montgomery Bus Boycott over 60 years ago for us to succeed. We’ve done it before. We can do it again. We will do it again. In just a few days, 79,089 people from all 50 states and countries all around the world have joined us. By now, you’ve probably signed many petitions the past few years. This is not a petition. This is you making a pledge that you will boycott cities, states, businesses, and institutions which are either willfully indifferent to police brutality and racial injustice or are deliberately destructive partners with it.