Stop Mass Incarceration Network NYC Press Conference: “No New Year Under This Old System. We Can't Breathe!”

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


The Stop Mass Incarceration Network (SMIN) held a press conference on Tuesday, December 23 on the steps of City Hall of the City of New York to call for "Rocking in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder," under the theme of “NO NEW YEAR UNDER THIS OLD SYSTEM. WE CAN'T BREATHE!”

SMIN announced activities to be held in New York City on New Year’s Eve—with a call to deliver the message with the following demands:

Justice for Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Akai Gurley and All Victims of Police Murder!

Police Murder Must Stop!

Speakers at the press conference included: Carl Dix, co-founder of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network with Cornel West, and representative of the Revolutionary Communist Party; Travis Morales, Steering Committee, NYC Stop Mass Incarceration Network; Richard Marini, World Can’t Wait; Sumumba Sobukwe, OWS/Occu-Evolve; B.M. Marcus, community organizer from Brooklyn and activist with SMIN.

Behind speakers at the press conference, people stood holding a long roll of yellow police tape that stretched for nearly 100 feet—with the names of Black and Latino men killed by the police in New York City and across the country.

Travis Morales addressed the call by NYC Mayor de Blasio and others for protests against murder by police to be put aside right now, saying: "Well, I will tell you this, the NYPD and police around this country have not put aside their murdering of our people.... There’s been no moratorium on the police murdering our people with impunity. We can’t back down.” He also spoke to how officials and the media have characterized chants calling cops racist and comparing the NYPD to the KKK as "hurtful, hateful and immoral," saying: “My question would be: What is it about those chants that’s not true?”

Morales called on people to join SMIN in bringing in the New Year with resistance: “We are calling on people to gather at 9 o’clock on New Year’s Eve at Union Square and then march at 10 o’clock to Times Square to take this message to the world, to the people of the world—rock in the New Year with resistance to police murder. And all the thousands and tens of thousands of people who have been in the streets, who have been protesting, who have been demanding justice for Michael Brown and Eric Garner, all those thousands and tens of thousands need to be in Times Square on New Years eve, raising their voices, raising their signs, raising their banners, demanding justice for Michael Brown, justice for Eric Garner, justice for all the victims of police murder—‘Indict, Convict and Send These Killer Cops to Jail'... As long as these murders continue we will continue to be out in the street demanding justice and demanding these murders stop.”

Carl Dix said, "They have no right to silence our voice. We must be heard....You got no right to tell us when, how and whether we can protest.”

Dix also talked about the need to continue resistance: “There has been a seemingly never-ending series of people being murdered by the happens again and again and again. And these cops are not punished for these crimes. But then something beautiful, powerful and necessary happened, beginning in Ferguson and spreading around the country when people stood up to say NO MORE to this.

“Now we’re being told ease up, step back—'how about a moratorium?' NO! Our stance should be, as long as these murders by police happen, as long as the criminal justice system refuses to indict and convict these killer cops, then our resistance must go on, business as usual must not go on.”

See the whole press conference here.

For more on SMIN, go to

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