Tell me again why we do not need to be in the streets on April 14?

by Travis Morales | March 9, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Recently, in talking with people about the Call for April 14, some have told me that now is not the time to get back out in the streets to demand that the police murder of Black and brown people stop. They say things like: we did that last year and now we have to get serious and develop policy demands; protest is very different from building a movement, the time of these protests and yelling in the streets is done for now; actions like protesting are not effective... working with social scientists, academics, and policy makers is; do you want to be irate or do you want to find common ground (with the police and the authorities) to find solutions; we need to be part of work that is responsive to people’s needs and not repeated calls for shutdowns and strikes. Some of this has come from people who were in the streets and played a very positive role in demanding justice. By policy demands people mean citizen review boards, special prosecutors, body cameras on police, sensitivity training for the police, and other proposals.

Whatever the intentions of those who are making these arguments, all of this amounts to turning our backs on—and frankly stabbing in the back—those whose lives have been and continue to be destroyed by this horrible system. It is robbing them of the hope that was awakened by the powerful protests that broke free of the limits deemed acceptable by those who run this system!!

First, what is one of the biggest needs people have right now? People need the police murder with impunity of Black and brown people to stop!

Second, beginning with the defiant youth in Ferguson, Missouri, who night after night stood up to rubber bullets, tear gas, armored personnel carriers, arrests, brutality, and militarized police to demand justice for Michael Brown and then taking a leap in later November and December when tens of thousands poured into the streets across the country, this has done more to expose and bring forth resistance to the bloody reality of the systematic police murder of Black and brown people with impunity than all the conferences, calls for special prosecutors, Justice Department investigations, civilian review boards, and promises of reform have done over the last several decades. Be real! If the youth in Ferguson had not stood up, Michael Brown would have been just one more Black man murdered by the police and only his family and some friends would have known about this. If people had not poured into the streets, Black lives would not have mattered to millions the way they did last year. People would not be talking about the need to stop these outrages and trying to figure out what to do.

Third, listen to our enemies. Beginning in Ferguson and through the end of last year, the police, the authorities, the media, and some “community leaders” worked to get people out of the streets with intimidation and threats, militarized police, empty promises, massive arrests, and heavy charges carrying years in prison. When that did not work, they seized on the death of two NYPD cops on December 20 to spread confusion and demoralization among the protesters and all those that want to stop the police killing our people. What was their main demand? Put a moratorium on protesting, put the protests aside, GET OUT OF THE STREETS! Why? Because this uprising exposed to the world that the police routinely murder Black and brown people and the system almost never punishes them. People began to question how this system, as policy, brutalizes and murders people of color and ask why this happens. That stung the system and opened the eyes of millions. People began to act to stop the police murder of our people.

Fourth, tell me, do you want to go backward, thinking that somehow without massive resistance in the streets involving millions that the system will have a change of heart and stop killing us after hundreds of years of doing just that, or do you want to bring forth a movement of millions that will not stop until the police murder of Black and brown people stops?

Volunteers Needed... for and Revolution

Send us your comments.

If you like this article, subscribe, donate to and sustain Revolution newspaper.