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From the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights... - Piano wire. [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
The richest girl in town.

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From the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights... [Saturday, Jan. 10th, 2009|05:09 pm]
The richest girl in town.
Justice for Oscar Grant

This week, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights joined the call for justice in the shooting of Oscar Grant III, a 22-year old unarmed man shot dead by a BART police officer on January 1st, 2009, at the Fruitvale BART station. As an organization that has tackled the issue of police brutality and accountability for the past 12 years, we share in the anger, sadness, and frustration this tragedy has stirred within our community and beyond.

Several Ella Baker Center staff members -- and many of you -- attended the January 7th rally at the Fruitvale BART Station. We were joined by hundreds of other activists from all over the Bay Area, a crowd that mirrored the incredible diversity of our region. Youth read poetry inspired not only by their pain, but also by their hope for justice; elected officials stood with the community; activists led chants and local performers shared their souls through song. It was a sight to behold.

As you may have heard, some people then led a march from Fruitvale to the Lake Merritt BART station. While most of the march was peaceful -- and at times even beautiful -- a small number of participants succumbed to their overwhelming anger, rooted in a long history of police misconduct and lack of accountability, and lashed out with inexcusable behavior. The Ella Baker Center believes the fight for justice must sometimes be taken to the streets, and does not condone vandalism or the destruction of property while speaking truth to power.

That's why we must keep our focus on the issue of justice for Oscar Grant and his family. We'll need your help as we continue to speak out in protest to ensure that this case is handled with respect and urgency.

Specifically, we demand:

* A thorough, independent investigation into the training, supervision, and arrest procedures of BART police.
* A full criminal investigation to be conducted by the State Department of Justice of all officers involved in the shooting that evening.

In addition, we're joining forces with the Courage Campaign and ColorOfChange.org to support a bill by Assemblymember Tom Ammiano and Senator Leland Yee that would create a civilian oversight board for BART police. Senator Yee and Assemblymember Ammiano are ahead of the curve in calling for this kind of legislation, and they'll need our support to get it passed and signed into law. Click here to sign the petition:

http://www.couragecampaign.org/NeverAgain

Please also join us in helping turn this tragedy into hope for change by making a donation to Oscar's family. Checks should be made payable to "Wanda Johnson" (Oscar's mother), and sent to Ella Baker Center at 344 40th Street, Oakland, CA 94609. We'll then pass along all donations to Oscar's family.

We are all deeply saddened by this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Oscar Grant III. In the coming months we hope you'll join us in demanding justice and continuing to work for peace and opportunity in our communities.

In solidarity,

Jakada Imani
Ella Baker Center for Human Rights

(Hat-tip, sukaynah.)
linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: rivetpepsquad
2009-01-11 01:31 am (UTC)
Yes, signed. Thanks.
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:27 am (UTC)
Thanks for signing!
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[User Picture]From: rednfiery
2009-01-11 02:56 am (UTC)
definitely signing the petition....

on friday's edition of your call radio, they had a.c. thompson (the propublica reporter who covered the post-katrina white-on-black vigilante shootings/killings) and tim redmond talking about the oscar grant killing and BART PD. in the segment (which started approximately 40 minutes into the hour-long show), tim redmond pointed out that oscar grant is actually the THIRD black man to be killed by BART police since the early 90s. in the two previous killings the BART police/shooters were not disciplined and, in fact, BART PD refused to release any information from their so-called investigation of those killings. the families actually had to SUE to get even the most minimal of information. (most minimal? ugh.)

in both of those cases, there were people calling for the creation of a civilian oversight committee for BART police. nothing ever came of it.

hopefully, because of the video and now-nationwide(?)-outcry over the oscar grant execution, the latest appeal for independent oversight will be successful. it's the VERY LEAST that should be done.
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:26 am (UTC)
Wow. Thank you. Tim Redmond is becoming my hero. He was on Forum on KQED holding it down a couple of days after the shooting, too.
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[User Picture]From: wordweaverlynn
2009-01-11 03:00 am (UTC)
Thanks. I'll repost this.
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:27 am (UTC)
Please do!
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[User Picture]From: erg
2009-01-11 03:43 am (UTC)
Thank you, I'm so glad there's some kind of focus, some kind of underscoring, it's just too big to be let go of in the next news cycle.

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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:28 am (UTC)
EBC is committed to working on issues with the justice system, and I think there's enough popular energy this time that it won't so easily be brushed away and forgotten.
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[User Picture]From: gordonzola
2009-01-11 03:50 am (UTC)
thanks for posting this. I'd been checking their website for their statement on the situation since it's so central to the work they do.
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:26 am (UTC)
Me, too!
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[User Picture]From: mysterc
2009-01-11 04:59 am (UTC)
signed.
and sent to my Dad(who had already signed it)
and forwarded to the National Black Police Officers Association.
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:25 am (UTC)
Thanks, S. When you coming down here?
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[User Picture]From: mysterc
2009-01-11 02:22 pm (UTC)
soonish:) a few weeks at most.

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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 09:01 pm (UTC)
HOORAY!
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[User Picture]From: unwoman
2009-01-11 08:40 am (UTC)
Signed, thank you for posting this!
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:25 am (UTC)
Thanks!
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[User Picture]From: doppmonster
2009-01-11 10:50 am (UTC)
Have you seen this account yet?

http://counterpunch.org/maher01092009.html
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[User Picture]From: fightingwords
2009-01-11 11:25 am (UTC)
I hadn't. Thanks!

See also: http://fem-men-ist.blogspot.com/
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[User Picture]From: msjen
2009-01-11 08:52 pm (UTC)
Thanks for posting this.
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