Skulls cracked with batons, flashlights, fists, feet and knees. Bodies shot with 1, 10, 50 and 100 bullets. Police brutality is not only constant in the United States, it is thriving and escalating.
The U.S. has the largest prison population in the world. Over 7 million people are incarcerated, on probation or on parole. And oppressed communities of color bear the brunt of the racist system.
Police brutality, the U.S. criminal “justice” system—the prisons, the jails and the courts—are integral parts of the capitalist state.
We invite you to this forum where local activists will discuss the above topics and more including: the case of Assata Shakur, the effects of prison on women and people with mental illness, and the Prison Hunger Strike.
ANSWER Coalition Sacramento 916.572.9680
Commentary from Autumn Thomas-Morales
People in the U.S. have eight times a better chance of being killed a police officer [someone they pay with their tax dollars to “protect and serve them”] than they do of being killed by a terrorist.
Just this month, over 11 civilians living in the U.S. have been killed by law enforcement officers.
At least 3 of the people killed this month by law enforcement officers are said to have been “emotionally disturbed” meaning they suffered from some sort of mental health issue.
It is obscene and absolutely unacceptable that in 2013 over 11 people [one just yesterday (5-28-13)] have been killed by officers sworn to protect and serve the public [criminal or law abiding].
It is 100% unacceptable that most law enforcement departments do not require people undergo rigorous and continuous training on how to approach situations in which a person may be mentally ill, so as to not have to “resort” to using lethal force to subdue them.
It is 100% unacceptable that at least 5 of the people killed this month were people of color when people of color only represent 22.9% of the population (per the 2010 U.S. Census: http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-05.pdf
). This is clearly is clearly endemic to a system that constantly demonizes, exploits and profiles people of color.
Incidents involving police brutality have increased. One of the better known cases involving a pregnant woman being pulled over hog tied on the 110 freeway in Los Angeles,CA by the California Highay Patrol for merely driving while on her cell phone (http://articles.latimes.com/2013/jan/17/local/la-me-chp-pregnant-woman-20130118
). There’s also the well known case of Alesia Thomas, an African-American woman from Los Angeles,CA who died after a LAPD officer kicked her in the genitals [violence clearly aimed at her Black womanhood and fueled by the officer’s disdain for black people and women] (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/31/alesia-thomas-death-lapd_n_1846775.html
The instances of abuses such as [tw] rape, forced pregnacy, and beatings for women incarcerated are so alarming and disgusting I’d need to make a new post to label it properly so as to not trigger people.
Things only get worse for people when they are LGBTQAI because of the already pre-established lack of respect the police have the poor, people of color, and women. The number of police initiated assaults against LGBTQAI people has remained just as steady as hate crimes from the general public against LGBTQAI people.
The ANSWER Coalition and it’s allies understand that our police are essential to the system that demonizes and victims women, people of color, non-able bodied people, LBGT people, and the poor. The forum will thoroughly cover how police brutality has intersections within it, and then propose resolutions as well as call people to action.
Please join the ANSWER coalition and others at this forum to learn more about police brutality, the industrial prison complex and how we can combat them both and build a movement that holds our police officers, penal system and court system accountable.
—Autumn Thomas-Morales, 2013 [organizer]