Friday, August 22, 2008

Oakland Police Kill Another Man

Early this morning, Oakland police officers killed a man who they say was attempting to "speed away from arrest with an officer in his car" downtown at 14th and Jefferson. The officer who killed the driver was placed "on routine paid administrative leave pending investigations by Oakland police and the Alameda County district attorney's office." The police had approached the car, the San Francisco Chronicle reported, because "the officer smelled marijuana."

The Uhuru Movement has always challenged the police violence against the African community throughout this country that is carried out under the guise of a "war on drugs" and a "war on crime." Although we don't have the details about the background of the man who was killed. It is highly likely that he was African. How many white people in Oakland are arrested for smelling like marijuana?

It is time now for us to have the courage in the white community to stop supporting and silently participating in this violence and stand up for economic development and justice for the African community!

Think of Casper Banjo, a 70 year old African man, famous in the Black Arts Movement, who was shot dead by OPD in front of his home while having an epileptic seizure in March of this year. Remember young Jose Luis Buenrostro Gonzalez who didn't have a chance, killed while only 16 years old near his home in East Oakland while on spring break from school. He had dreams of being an airplane mechanic. What about Jody Woodfox, whose two children will grow up without their father because Oakland Officer Hector Jimenez made the decision to shoot Woodfox in the back while he was running away? And what about Andrew Moppin, also killed while running AWAY from the same police officer who killed Woodfox and was shot dead on New Year's Eve of last year. He was a teenager.

This type of police violence is rampant against the African community through the U.S. Think of Sean Bell murdered on the night before his wedding by New York City cops. Just google "police shootings,"wrongful death" +police, "taser deaths," just to see how many African people have been brutalized or killed by the police.

The Uhuru Movement has been waging a campaign called Justice for Javon. Javon Dawson killed on June 7th of this year while attending a graduation party. Dawson was killed by St. Petersburg police officer Tom Nemeth, having just come from committing crimes against the Iraqi people through his military service in Iraq. On last week, August 11th, a Grand Jury under the State Attorney Bernie McCabe, acquitted Nemeth of all charges. The Uhuru Movement upped the ante and took the case to Florida Governor Charlie Crist in the form of a demonstration in Tallahassee. As a result of the pressure from the campaign, which includes family and friends of Javon Dawson, the governor has called for a review of the State Attorney's findings. This is the kind of campaign and action we need here in Oakland. Join the Uhuru Movement!
Come to our Uhuru Solidarity Movement rally to build the events with Diop Olugbala coming up on September 8th and 11th, "What About the Black Community, Obama?" this Monday, August 25th from 6 to 7:30pm at the Temescal Library Community Room at 5205 Telegraph Ave in Oakland. For more info, call Wendy at 510-295-7834

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