People's Tribunal on Police Brutality video part 3
Collection: People's Tribunal on Police Brutality
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Speaking here: Bill Swain, Genevieve Mitchell, Alice Ragland
(Bill Swain): ...the killing and the brutality. We need to get back in the streets on April 14th. We need to build our resistance back on the Ferguson track, and we need to make revolution to get rid of the system of capitalism that causes all this suffering. Check out Bob Avakian, the chairman of The Revolutionary Communist Party. Fight the power. Transform the people for revolution. 7 I'm looking forward to hearing these harrowing stories of the day-to-day brutality. We were in the projects yesterday. I don't think she made it, but she said that when she was, I don't know, 20 years old, they asked where her boyfriend was. She said, ‘I don't know where he is.’ and they shot, just took that gun and shot her right in the leg. This is the day-to-day brutality that goes on against black and Latino people. You know, people, it needs to stop, and only the people are gonna stop it. Only the people can stop it. We can go to all the meetings we want and all the police chiefs and all that is, is a way to try to cool everybody down to say, ‘I guess we just have to live with it.’ No, we are not gonna live with it. And we say, ‘These are our people. These are our youth, whether we're black, white, purple, whatever.’ These are our people and we have to be out in the streets to say, ‘No more.’ And we need to be, some of us, actually bringing forward a revolutionary movement to say, ‘We're gonna sweep this, so this will be no more!’ When the police forces of the socialist, uh.., state come upon a problem, like Taisha Miller in California who was having a seizure, no, they're not gonna shoot her down; they're gonna actually deal with it. They're not gonna shoot down Brandon Jones because he took something out of a store. They're gonna actually never do that, but actually have some justice. So, that's why I think we need to actually establish and make revolution when we can, and establish a vision of a society where this would be no more. Thank you.” (Applause)
Genevieve Mitchell—“My name is Genevieve Mitchell, and um.., let me just briefly begin by saying, ‘Thank you.’ to Carol Steiner, Bill Swain and Puncture the Silence for convening a panel on these very important issues and for allowing the community to come forward and speak out loud about the nature of state-sponsored terror and violence. To this esteemed panel, um... doctors, lawyers and friends.... and audience, welcome and thank you. The parasitically incestuous nature of the United States’ privatized corporate prison industrial complex, and the skewed relationship that exists between the institutional political players, law enforcement, the judiciary, citizen/victims and the system’s shareholder/benefactors is profound. Millions of black, brown, and poor white, mentally-ill youth, feeble and homeless provide the foundational base of this skewed economic network. A slavery-for-profit system via a prison Ponzi scheme. Slavery, you see, is transformative. Be it overseers, posses, lynch mobs, Klan, paddy rollers, gulag, and by extension, law enforcement, the precursors who provide the steam engine for the racial criminalization and incarceration of multitudes of millions for profit, profit attached to privatized corporate wealth from which there is no viable compunction to cease and desist. The end of these systems, veiled as law and order, will have to be dismantled by people of good conscience who clearly understand the nature of institutional social violence and racism, and the economic implications of organized judicial terror and state-sponsored violence. That's why we're here today, and we wait hearing your testimony. Thank you very much.”
Alice Ragland—“Thank you to all the panelists. So, my name is Alice. So, you guys can read my bio and everything. But I guess my most memorable moment in the struggle that told me that something was seriously, seriously messed up with the system was Trayvon Martin, not, after he didn’t get arrested; I was very annoyed by that. I was hurt by that. I was disappointed. You know, when they finally took George Zimmerman into the courtroom, you know, I was like okay, this trial's going on, it looks like, you know, some bumps in the road in the trial but it seemed very clear to me that he killed a boy for no reason. Um.., but the moment that really stuck with me was when the jury didn't see that.... So, um.., that really threw me. Ya know, I was in, I think, my second or third year in college, and ya know, I was expecting everybody to see that it was obvious that he wasn't doing anything and he didn't deserve to be shot. But after that jury said otherwise, I was just done. I was, like, this is not okay; there's something seriously wrong with this system. Um..., you know, the fact that people are not getting even indicted or taken into a courtroom at all for doing the exact same thing kills me. Um.., but even if they do, there might be a jury full of people who don't see “race”. You know, you might have a jury full of racists. And that's what's happening with a lot of these grand juries. So, it's just on so many different levels that people go unpunished for their murder, their senseless murder of black, brown and poor people. Um.., so, that is really, like; that was my jump off point. I was, like, no more; this isn't gonna happen. So, I just delved straight into the movement, even though I had a huge focus on social justice before; that was my catalyst into going straight into this particular cause. So, since then I've organized with a lot of different groups. One group that I organized with, called Ohio Student Association, after the murder of John Crawford. If you're not familiar with the case, it took place in Dayton, Beaver Creek, specifically. He had seen a BB gun or some fake gun in a Walmart and he was in there talking on the phone to his girlfriend, about to go to a cookout, and he picks up the gun and he's just toying around with it. So, a 911 caller called in and said, ‘There's a man with a gun in here.’ Um, so, the police came and immediately took him out. They shot him right as soon as they saw him. This is a gun that was out in Walmart. It's not a real [sic] gun. It's not, you know, harmful to anybody, and they just immediately shot him and then they harassed his girlfriend afterward; harassed her; brought her to tears before they let her know that he was dead. So, in response to that, one of my activist groups, like I said, Ohio Student Association, we went and slept over at the Beaver Creek police station for three days; camped out, full-fledged. We had so much support. We literally had a giant sleepover in the police station until, uh, we got a meeting with the police chief. Um, so, we had people bringing in food. We had people coming and stopping in, bringing in their Wi-Fi networks ‘cause they cut off the Wi-Fi. At one point they cut off the electricity, so we couldn't charge anything. So, we had people bringing from extension cords to backup generators as soon as we tweeted, ‘We need this. We need food.’ Ya know, they brought it immediately. We had so much food that we had to give some food away. You know, we had dinner for days. Um, so, anyway, we had the meeting with the police chief, a couple of representatives from OSA, and they ended up saying that… It was three police officers including the police chief. And they ended up saying that they didn't think that race played a role in this. So, you know, that was ...