Outrage Against Police Terrorism

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[New York News]

Undaunted by heavy rain, several hundred protesters gathered in front of Madison Square Garden in midtown Manhattan for “A Day of Outrage against Police Terrorism” on the sixth anniversary of the 2001 World Trade Center terrorist attack.  Organizers, led by the Black human rights defenders of the December 12th Movement, dared to expand the definition of terrorism to include systemic police violence in Black and Latino communities throughout the United States.
Protesters held placards displaying many of the victims of police terror in New York City and across the U.S. and demanded the immediate termination of NYC Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.
The day started in struggle as NYPD officials, citing the sound permit limitations, set up steel cage barricades on the northeast corner of 33rd St and 8th Ave and tried to entice organizers to herd the people gathering across the street into them.  December 12th security forces politely refused.  Police then moved the barricades across the street to surround them.  Security forces then positioned the people in a military formation marched them out of the barricaded area to the sound permit area and held the initial rally.
December 12th Movement chairperson and veteran political activist Viola Plummer led the charge.  “Comrades, we are at war!  We must be vigilant, this is very serious. We have to take our struggle for self determination to another level.  The New York City Police Department has made an assessment of our protests of their murder and brutality.  They see that they can murder us at will and expect some protest that will subside after a short period of time.  They just wait us out and continue business as usual, over and over again.  Today we will begin to change that. We have had to change our initial plan of action due to the stormy weather and turn out, but be prepared for action. Pay close attention to the brothers and sisters on security and follow instructions.”
At the brief rally, Plummer introduced Larry Holmes of the international Action Center, NYC Councilman Charles Barron, and Fred Hampton Jr. of Chicago based Prisoners of Consciousness Committee. 
“I commend the December 12th Movement for their political insight and bold unrelenting courage to organize mass resistance protest to police terrorism on September 11.  It is time dispel the myth of 911 and deal with the reality we face on the ground daily in this city.  I am proud to be here and stand in unity against police terrorism here and around the country,” declared Larry Holmes of the International Action Center.
Councilman Charles Barron proclaimed, “They are lucky that we are still marching.  Police murder, brutality and harassment must stop in our communities.  We are not the only ones who can bleed.  We are sick and tired of the abuse by those we pay with our taxes. Enough is enough! We must shut this city down. They have to feel our pain.”
Son of the late revolutionary Black Panther Chairman, Fred Hampton Jr. was born into the Black liberation movement.  His father Fred Hampton, Sr. was murdered by Chicago police in 1969 while sleeping next to his wife who was eight months pregnant.  Today, Hampton continues the significant work of his father focusing on grassroots brothers and sisters.  “In Chicago we have had six police murders in the past month.  Police terrorism is nation-wide.  We have to intensify our fight and train and organize our people from where they are.  We have to define our own reality.  The NYPD are murderers. That’s what we should call them.  Hampton then led a call and response shouting “NYPD!” and the crowd responding “Murderers!” 
He continued “more and more of our people are being put in – not jails but concentration camps.  We have to call it what it is.  They are concentration camps.  I am honored to be with you all today.  You all are the warriors of the people.  When you are fighting there is a certain amount of freedom in that.  Most people are too scared to even say they are scared.  We have to show them how to stand up and fight.  We must do our work!  Power to the people!”
The demonstrators firmed up their military formation flanked by security forces and quickly moved out into the street behind a huge red, black and green flag. Led by Omowale Clay on a handheld loud speaker they chanted “Stop Police Terrorism!” “Kelly Must Go! “Who’s Street? Our Streets!” And “Who’s the number one enemy? The NYPD!”
Their planned tactics and guerilla-like mobility repeatedly out maneuvered police cars and motorcycles for almost two hours.  Demonstrators rapidly moved through one way streets in the opposite direction and at one point completely encircling a police motorcycle squadron in the busy intersection of 7th Avenue and 34th St and stopping traffic in all four directions.  The march ended in front of MACY’s department store. 
Plummer said, “We have come to MACY’s today because as we were organizing against the brutal police assault on Michael and Evelyn Warren when they tried to question police who were brutalizing a handcuff young man in June, a group of Black women came together and decided MACY's  must be part of our plan of action.  Some of them were involved in organizing a “Stop Shopping at Macy” campaign because of the constant disrespect toward our people and at the same time period Sean Bell was murdered by the police. They quickly became involved in the mass protests against police. But when there was a massive march against the police murder of Sean Bell down Fifth Avenue ending at MACY’s no call for an economic boycott was called despite their requests.  Some of the marchers actually shopped at MACY’s that day. This time Black women will lead the call to end police terrorism and 'Stop Shopping at MACY’s Now!' The politcal and economic nexus must be welded in our struggle for our human right to self determination and self defense"
The next militant street action will be held on Black Solidarity Day, Monday, November 5, 2007.  For more information call (718) 398-1766.

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