Nov. 25: Protests in the Streets of Chicago

After Video Released of Laquan McDonald’s Execution-Style Murder by Chicago Police

November 26, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


From Readers

Photos from the streets of Chicago - 11/24/15

Chicago 11/24/15

Chicago 11/24/15

Chicago 11/24/15


Events are developing very rapidly since the video was released of Laquan McDonald’s execution-style murder by Chicago police. The outrage over this horrendous murder and the sense that this cannot be tolerated any more and need to act on it have become a very big deal, with a lot of different Black forces expressing their feelings of betrayal and anger that the police and the City lied about the murder of Laquan and covered it up and dragged out the investigation for over a year when it was crystal clear from the video that this was straight up murder. Today Jesse Jackson, and Congressmen Danny Davis and Bobby Rush, along with other politicians, called for people to act in the street on Black Friday at 11 am on North Michigan Avenue and to march up to Water Tower, the symbol of this upscale shopping district. Stop Mass Incarceration Network had already called for people to protest at the Water Tower at 11 am.

Voice of the Ex-Offender and Stop Mass Incarceration Network held a press conference, featuring the Stolen Lives families, including Gloria Pinex and Freddie McGee, and others also calling for mass protest to stop police murder on Black Friday. It was covered extensively. AP reported, “Several protesters said they were parents of Black men who also had been shot and killed by Chicago police. The group wants people to shut down Michigan Avenue, known as Chicago’s “Magnificent Mile” on Friday.”

Protests in outrage at the deliberate murder by Chicago police of Laquan McDonald have continued for two nights—lasting for hours each, taking over major downtown streets, including a shutdown of an interstate at midnight. Protests were called on the spot after the city announced they were releasing the video on Tuesday instead of Wednesday. SMIN called on people to gather downtown at 5 pm on State Street. The BYP100 called a Black only gathering of students which quickly became a march of 150 from the near West Side. They took over major streets heading toward Lake Shore Drive and at one point it was attacked by police and three people were arrested. The two protests came together on Michigan Avenue, later marching to the police station to demand the release of the protesters. All this was covered live on national and local TV as well as live stream. Soon some of the protesters took off again for downtown and the character of the march became more diverse as many new people, including white and Latino students from downtown dorms as well as people from the poor Black neighborhoods where the police terrorize people every day, who were looking for the protest. Police went after one of the young Black march leaders, Malcolm London who was charged with a felony. But the protesters continued to take the streets, block intersections, including taking over the interstate. Protesters rallied again this morning in support of London, and he was not only released but his charges were dropped.

Tonight’s protest, called by SMIN and spread through social media and taking the flyer with a statement from the RCP,USA everywhere, initially gathered about 40 people, many from the Black neighborhoods plus at least 20 media. Charles Blow of the New York Times was live-tweeting from the march. The Revolution Club and Stop Mass Incarceration spoke and then opened up the mic. Black people from the neighborhoods expressed their raw anger and pain at the inhumanity of what is going on. Family members of Laquan McDonald took part in the protest.

One protester said, “The cops were hands off tonight, so the people took over the street and all the major intersections, where people would come out and speak bitterness, we would chant and sing. It was a real mix of people, young Black kids were nose-to-nose with the police, screaming in their faces, shaking their fists, “You killed Laquan. You kill us all the time.” There were white students, young Black bucket drummers, clergy, middle-age Black people, and some impeccably dressed white shoppers who were loudly clapping as the protest went by. Black youth and older people held the banner the whole time. When we blocked many intersections, then more people joined in. We had a sit-down on the bridge while people spoke their outrage, we had die-ins on the corners. We totally snarled up the traffic. We died-in outside the Trump Tower and Phenom performed a spoken word piece there. We sang “I Can’t Breathe.” We chanted “Indict, Convict Send the Killer Cops to Jail, the Whole Damn System Is Guilty as Hell, and “16 shots”. On the mic in the middle of the street people were pouring their hearts out with a tremendous amount of passion, passing the mic around. In the intersections ,they got into discussions about why are they killing us, what are the police really about. The scene was a mix of tremendous anger and celebration.”

That’s it for tonight.

P.S. Later on 3 people were arrested, and the marchers went to the 1st District to do jail support. More information to come.

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