Police brutality is an ongoing, growing and deadly problem in the United States Of America.
It includes the unwarranted and unjustified killing of unarmed people, the use of excessive force, the violation of peoples' constitutional rights, racist and discriminatory practices, criminal activity, corruption and misconduct, increased militarization of police forces, and the failure of the criminal justice system to hold police accountable.
Police brutality is not an isolated problem. It is a historical problem with roots that are deep in the social fabric of this country. It must be seen within the broader context of racial and economic injustice and inequality.
While the victims of police brutality come from all racial groups in society, the vast majority come from African American, Latino, Native American and other communities of color. They are overwhelmingly poor and working class. Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Abdul Kamal, Kashad Ashford, and Rekia Boyd are among the recent victims.
Police brutality has been and continues to be the cause of social unrest in the country. Throughout contemporary US history incidents of police brutality have sparked explosive episodes of civil rebellion and unrest, with the most recent being that of Ferguson, Missouri.
The failure of the criminal justice system to hold police officers accountable is causing a political crisis as more people discover that police brutality goes unpunished. Police kill unarmed civilians and are not even charged.
One grand jury after another fails to indict police officers. The cases of Michael Brown and Eric Garner being the most recent examples. This is perpetuating a growing belief that the criminal justice system is racist and illegitimate.
Police brutality is a serious and longstanding problem. For decades attempts have been made to reform the police. These efforts have only been successful when tremendous sustained political and social pressure have been brought to bear upon the appropriate government institutions.
For these reasons the People's Organization For Progress (POP) is calling a MILLION PEOPLE'S MARCH Against Police Brutality, Racial Injustice, And Economic Inequality. We will march to demand an end to police brutality and justice for all of its victims, police reform, and an end to the problems of racial injustice and economic inequality which lead to police brutality.
Chairman, People's Organization for Progress
PS. Organizing meetings for the Million People's March will occur until the date of march each Thursday, 6:30 PM, Abyssinian Baptist Church, 224 West Kinney Street, Newark, NJ. To find out how to get involved, endorse, co-sponsor or for more information please call (973) 801-0001.