Revolution #66, October 22, 2006


This call was issued by the October 22nd Coalition to Stop Police Brutality, Repression, and the Criminalization of a Generation:

Call for Oct. 22, 2006:
Eleventh Annual National Day of Protest to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation

October 22, 2005, Los Angeles

October 22, 2005 protest in Los Angeles

Two police officers in San Francisco, CA shot and killed a man they found in an apartment that they believed was vacant. Police claimed that 25-year-old Asa Sullivan had a gun, but in reality, he was only carrying an eyeglass case. In Baltimore, MD a 15-year-old, was shot at by police when they assumed the cell phone he was reaching for was a gun. 49-year-old Cindy Conolly was in Oxnard, CA to attend her son’s wedding, but was killed instantly while sunbathing on the beach when two police patrolling the beach drove their vehicle over her. Air marshals in Miami, FL shot and killed 44-year-old Rigoberto Alpizar over a suspected “bomb” in his backpack, which turned out to be non-existent. 31-year-old Tarance Hall was shot and killed by Las Vegas cops for playing his car radio too loudly. 34-year-old James Wilcox was shot and killed by Rhode Island police for shoplifting baby formula. In Los Angeles, CA, Elio Carrion, a 21-year-old on leave from the Air Force, was arrested and forced to lie down on the ground after a car chase. A video recording clearly shows the sheriff ordering Carrion to “get up,” Carrion saying out loud that he is getting up, and the sheriff shooting him three times as he pushes himself up. Mentally ill Ronald Madison, the 40-year-old who was one of the two running across Danziger Bridge who were shot and killed by New Orleans police soon after Hurricane Katrina hit, was said to have “reached into his waistband” and “turned on the officers,” according to police, but CNN’s recent lawsuit against the coroner’s office revealed that Madison had five entry wounds in the back. His brother Lance, also on the bridge, was arrested and jailed for six months for shooting at the cops, even though he didn’t have a weapon. These outrageous scenes blip across the TV and in print news for a few days and then are buried, not allowed to stay long in the national consciousness. But as the Stolen Lives Project of the October 22nd Coalition continues to document, police brutality and murder nationwide are on the rise.

Oct. 22, 2005 NYC

Family members of those
murdered by police.
October 22, 2005 protest, New York City

Why isn’t the escalation of police brutality and murder in recent years headline news? Perhaps because these images don’t comply well with the need to project images of police as “defenders against terrorism.” Since September 11, 2001, law enforcement agents (including border patrols) have been given greater license to increase and broaden repression. Steps were even taken to grant more worth to a police officer’s life, with the “heroes law” enacted in New York State, for which the governor originally called for a death sentence for anyone who shoots a cop. At the same time, the cop who killed African immigrant Ousmane Zongo in New York, after a rare conviction (criminally negligent homicide) was sentenced with probation and community service. Torture, brutality, detentions, domestic spying, profiling, and other attacks on human and civil liberties have been made part of the routine of daily life that we are asked to accept without question. At airports, subways, transportation centers, and more we are asked to “welcome” bag searches, check points, invasion of privacy, stripping away of civil liberties, all in the name of “national security.”

Attempts to criminalize immigrants even further are being pushed by lawmakers. Demonstrations and political protests are increasingly penned in, attacked, spied upon, videotaped, and outright denied by authorities. Protesters in support of LGBT rights and reproductive freedom in Pennsylvania were charged for violating the USA PATRIOT Act after being beaten and arrested by police. General Michael Hayden, who headed up some of the government’s most secret and controversial domestic spying under the NSA, was rewarded for his work by being made head of the CIA. A former NSA intelligence agent, Russell Tice, warned that the nation was decaying into a “police state.” The war abroad has its corresponding part in the war on people at home, where law enforcement agents step up their harassment and criminalization of certain neighborhoods and populations.

What can we do? Why should you come out on October 22, 2006?

We resist so that we will not be crushed. Our resistance gives other people courage. The work of the October 22nd Coalition over the last ten years has shown that when we expose what is happening and drag their crimes out into the light of day, it puts the “checkpoint” back on them! On October 22nd, we remember those whose lives have been stolen from us. Through our actions, we bring out the stories that have been covered over. Families speak out and tell the truth about so many cases that too many times people haven’t even heard of: Virginia Verdee, 12 years old, run over and killed by Bronx police; 15-year-old Brandon McCloud, shot by Cleveland police in his bed at 5 a.m. before he got up to go to school; Samson Bounthisane, an 18-year-old shot and killed by Seattle sheriff’s deputies; Michael Ellerbee, 12 years old, shot in the back by a PA state trooper; and too many thousands more. October 22nd is the day when people all over the country come together to STOP police violence, repression, and the criminalization of a generation. Across the country, in different cities and through different means of expression, we raise a resounding “NO” to their steadily increasing moves towards a police state. Link up to the nationwide protests through the October 22nd website, Organize an event in your neighborhood, school or church. Email information on your plans to Endorse this call, give financially, and spread the word. Join the struggle! Fight Back! On October 22nd, wear Black!

For more information:
Nation Office of October 22nd Coalition
PO Box 2627
New York, NY 10009

Endorsements for the Call for a National Day of Protest to Stop Police Brutality, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation on October 22, 2006

(as of 10/2/06)

Families of People Killed by Law Enforcement

Individuals and Organizations

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