April 14 National Shut-Down Day Against Police Abuses

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Carl Dix and Cornel West [Community Announcement]

 

April 14 National Shut-Down Day Against Police Abuses

National Actions To Stop Murder By Police. No School! No Work! Stop Business As Usual!

WHERE: 28 locations nationwide

On Tuesday, April 14, from NYC to LA; from Pasco, Washington to Ferguson, Missouri -- sites of murders of unarmed black and Latino men -- people will take to the streets to demand: Murder By Police Stop Now! The Call for #ShutDownA14 was initiated by Carl Dix and Cornel West and organized by the StopMass Incarceration Network.

Walter Scott was gunned down in South Carolina. The killing was caught on video, and like Eric Garner, Michael Brown, and now Eric Harris in Tulsa, OK, there was no attempt to revive; instead police showed contemptuous disregard for their humanity.  More than 90 unarmed people have been shot by police since the start of 2015. We are clear: without the mass detemined resistance that began last summer in Ferguson, this epidemic of police killings would not now be in the national/international spotlight.

On April 14 2015: The people will retake the offensive in the FIRST NATIONAL PROTESTS since fall 2014.

“On April 14, we're going to revive the spirit of Ferguson, that spirit of refusing to suffer the brutality of the system in silence. And we're going to TAKE IT HIGHER. We have to get back out into the streets to declare that we're not backing down, we're not going away,” Carl Dix said.

Cornel West added, “They’ve been shooting young folk for so long—older folk too– but when it reaches that point of such unadulterated disrespect if you don’t straighten your back up and go somewhere, something is wrong. That's why we're gonna march on April 14th.”

On April 14, they will be joined by the families of 30 unarmed people killed by police in cities around the country, together with powerful voices of conscience including: Eve Ensler, Alice Walker, Peter Coyote, Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts III, Arturo O'Farrill, Jasmine Guy, Jasiri X, Cindy Sheehan, Tom Morello, and others...

The families tell not just the horror of what happened to their loved ones, but the harrowing story of justice denied. Nicholas Heyward, Sr., whose 14 year old son was killed by the NYPD, has been fighting for justice for 20 years: “We need to be out on April 14th. We gotta let people know we are not tolerating this anymore. This injustice needs to stop and it’s going to depend on us in order to stop it.”

Video statements:

Alice Walker

Cindy Sheehan

Jasmine Guy

Peter Coyote

Statement by participants:

Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts III, pastor of the Abyssinian Baptist Church in New York City: "I am supporting mass protest on April 14, Shut It Down! We think pressure needs to stay on for justice in regards to the killing of Eric Garner, and of Black and Brown people all across the country. April 14 we will assemble on Union Square North at 2 p.m. We want to make sure that we all are there. We want to see our congregations, our ministers and pastors around the city there on that day, and we will continue to press our case for justice."

Eve Ensler: "On April 14 I will walk out and stand up with #ShutDownA14 to say with all my heart that the murder of black and brown people by the police MUST stop. That there must be immediate justice for all the victims of brutal, murdering police. That police responsible for these murders must be indicted and convicted. That until this happens, we cannot rest or stop. Now is the moment to go the distance with more determination and commitment, with more connection and resistance. To demand a country where everyone is treated with dignity, respect, compassion, and love. See you in the streets April 14."

Arturo O'Farrill: "On the 14th we must walk out, walk out of your business, walk out of your classroom, walk out of your apartment, walk out of your complacency, walk out of all that you think you know, and take part in the real world. Walk out of the gray world and walk into the world of the sun and stand with the people of the sun. The gray world doesn't exist."

Naomi Wallace, playwright: "Let's take to the streets on April 14th to protest this on-going wave of murder by police against our brothers and sisters. Whether it be institutionally sanctioned racist killings inside the U.S., or the racist slaughter-by-drones through U.S. wars, we must unite and resist together."

Charles Burnett: "Black lives are taken with impunity, and schools being mostly pathways to prisons. Everything is at a cost. The right to vote is being challenged. The question is how long before we wake up?"

Rev. Frank Wulf: "I am convinced that the time has come when we can no longer stand by and let these killings by police happen with impunity. Many of us have already been engaged in the struggle. But, I believe that now is the time when all of us need to speak a clear and collective prophetic word. We, as people of faith, have to say 'No more!' to these killings, and especially to the culture of callousness that allows them to continue without consequence or repercussion."

Richard Leaky: "I join the many decent people who are demonstrating against the increasing police brutality everywhere. And it is especially shocking to see this in a nation that claims to be so advanced. Total shame on the system that cannot control such thugs in the police forces. We in Africa are often pointed to as primitives but the U.S. Police forces are worse. No unarmed person should be killed by police; it is cold blooded racially driven criminal action and must always be severely punished."

Statements from Parents:

Cephus “Uncle Bobby” Johnson, uncle of Oscar Grant killed by BART police 1/1/09:"April 14 is really a critical date for us all to come out.  From the momentum we have from the Michael Brown murder back in August, the system by design has been trying to derail the movement.  And because of that they’re trying to take the steam out of people believing they can actually bring about a change and creating a mass movement.  So it’s important that we all on April 14 become part of No Business as Usual – we will shut it down!   Shutting down the economy whether walking out of school, walking out of colleges, walking out of work, blocking freeways – doing something to disrupt the normal operations of this society.   So if you are tired of young black and brown men being killed across this United States of America, we call on you to stand with us on that day."

Dionne Smith Downs and Carey Downs, parents of James Rivera, a 16-year old murdered by police in 2010 in Stockton CA: "This is what the AR-15’s did to my son," Dionne said as she pointed to a large photograph being held by her husband showing James’ bullet-ridden body, "I’m not going to go away.  I’m not going to be blind.  I’m going to fight until I can’t fight no more. On April 14 I’m going to kick Stockton ass."

Nicholas Heyward Sr. , father of Nicholas Heyward Jr., killed by NPYD 9/27/94: "I’m the father of 13-year old Nicholas Jr. Nicholas Jr was murdered by NYPD 20 years ago, September 27, 1994.  I don’t use the term 'murder' loosely. Whenever you shoot an innocent unarmed human being who isn’t committing any crimes, that is considered murder. Since Nicholas Jr was murdered, there has been over 300 innocent unarmed humans that were also murdered by the NYPD – and I’m just talking New York City. We need to be out on April 14th.  We gotta let people know we are not tolerating this anymore.  This injustice needs to stop and it’s going to depend on us in order to stop it."

 

Contact: press.stopmassincarceration@gmail.com

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