Wet’suwet’en Retake Checkpoint A Month After Police Crackdown

On Saturday, December 19, activists leading the Wet’suwet’en resistance against the Coastal GasLink (CGL) pipeline project declared that they evicted workers of the project from the drill site. This development comes exactly a month after the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) violently dismantled a blockade led by the Gidimt’en clan near Camp Coyote and arrested dozens of protesters and even bystanders.

The declaration of reclaiming Camp Coyote was made over a statement released by the Gidimt’en Checkpoint, on Sunday, December 20. “This courageous action took place one month after a wave of militarized raids on Gidimt’en land,” the statement read.

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Two DC Officers Indicted For Murder Of Karon Hylton-Brown

Washington, DC – After months of fighting for justice in the police murder of Karon Hylton-Brown, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for D.C. announced the indictment of Terence Sutton for second-degree murder, one of the DC Police officers involved with this gross negligence of their duties and complete disregard for this young man’s life. He was also indicted with federal charges of conspiracy and obstruction of justice, along with his supervisor Andrew Zabavsky.

We stand in solidarity and full support of Karon Hylton-Brown’s family as they continue their fight for justice and accountability for all. Since his death on October 23rd, 2020, organizations, volunteers and supporters of his family have pushed for an investigation into his death. Not only demanding MPD exercise their due diligence as required by law to investigate, but to hold the officers accountable for their behaviors that caused his death.

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36 Years Ago, Police Firebombed A Neighborhood In Philly

Since the beginning of time, there has been a constant struggle between people who want to be free and those who seek to control them. It is an unending war that that rages just beneath the surface of “civilized” society, waiting to reach a boiling point where violence can erupt on the streets between police and citizens—or the oppressor and the oppressed.

Since our history is passed down by those who seek to control us, this struggle is framed in a way where the oppressors are always the innocent victims, and the oppressed the senseless terrorists when in reality, the opposite is usually true.

Nowhere is this situation more obvious than in the media coverage and cultural myths surrounding the American Civil Rights movement. Police would regularly raid the offices and homes of civil rights leaders, shooting first and asking questions later.

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An Environment Of Anti-Racism Is How We Win

Canada – Spring has always been a time of renewal and hope. I’m filled with a sense of wonder and possibility as I watch new life sprout from the soil and cherry blossoms bloom along streets.

But this spring, I feel a prevailing heaviness. For many of us, this season marks a year since COVID-19 restrictions were put in place. March 13 marked one year since Breonna Taylor was shot in her sleep by police in Louisville, Ky. As the season progresses, and as we pass through solemn anniversaries, I continue to be reminded of where we were a year ago.

Last spring, the COVID-19 pandemic started to unmask the inequalities in society, with the virus disproportionately affecting racialized communities. Headlines were filled with stories of police violence as mass protests erupted around the world.

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AFL-CIO’s Report Shows Commitment To Defending Police Unions

On July 2020, a month after protests over racial injustice and police violence set the AFL-CIO headquarters on fire, America’s largest union coalition formed a ​“Task Force on Racial Justice” as a signal that it was taking the issues seriously. A subcommittee of that task force was charged with producing a report on the touchy issue of the labor movement’s relationship to police unions. In These Times has obtained a copy of that committee’s draft report, which is currently circulating within the group before being released to the public. As it stands, the report amounts to a definitive rejection of calls for the labor movement to separate itself from police unions, and a clear statement that the AFL-CIO intends to stay closely aligned with its police members. 

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Police Killing Black Americans Amounts To Crimes Against Humanity

The systematic killing and maiming of unarmed African Americans by police amount to crimes against humanity that should be investigated and prosecuted under international law, an inquiry into US police brutality by leading human rights lawyers from around the globe has found.

A week after the former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was convicted of murder in George Floyd’s death, the unabated epidemic of police killings of Black men and women in the US has now attracted scorching international attention.

In a devastating report running to 188 pages, human rights experts from 11 countries hold the US accountable for what they say is a long history of violations of international law that rise in some cases to the level of crimes against humanity.

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What Police Impunity Looks Like

We already know the case of former Minneapolis officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd is an anomaly. Officers who kill civilians are rarely prosecuted, let alone convicted  — many aren’t even disciplined by their departments.

To understand how police impunity works, it’s worth looking at another case, that of Kawaski Trawick.

Two years ago, Trawick was alone in his apartment in the Bronx when two New York City Police Department officers arrived in response to 911 calls about Trawick walking through the building with a serrated bread knife and a stick. Trawick, who had a history of mental health and drug issues, had locked himself out of his apartment but had gotten back in after firefighters pried open the door.

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Scheer Intelligence: ‘When We Fight, We Win’

As the world  awaited the fate of  Derek Chauvin–the Minneapolis police officer who was convicted of killing George Floyd–Black Lives Matter co-founder Melina Abdullah joined Robert Scheer on “Scheer Intelligence” to discuss what he calls the most successful social justice movement the country has perhaps ever seen. In the timely episode, Abdullah, a lifelong activist and California State University, Los Angeles professor, traces the roots of the BLM movement back to 2013 and notes that Floyd’s killing was the moment the “world was cracked wide open” for everyone to see the deep-seated systemic racism at the core of every American institution. She adds, however, that regardless of a guilty verdict there is still a lot of work to be done in order to truly achieve racial justice.

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Ohio Students Sit-in To Demand University Cut Ties With Police

Students at Ohio State staged a sit-in protest and demanded that the university cut ties with Columbus Police in the wake of the killing of Ma’Khia Bryant.

The protest took place one day after a police officer shot and killed the 16-year-old girl in the city, just as the verdict in the George Floyd trial was reached.

Students staged their Wednesday protest in the Ohio Union before taking to the streets to march.

Some carried signs with the victim’s name, along with phrases like “say her name”, while another student had a sign that said, “Being Black shouldn’t be a death sentence.”

“Ohio State supports the right of our students, faculty and staff to peacefully express their views and to speak out about issues that are important to them,” the university said in a statement.

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Guilty! People’s Uprising Wins Justice For George Floyd

One thing is unambiguously clear: Derek Chauvin being found guilty is the result of a historic popular uprising. Chauvin’s brutal murder of George Floyd ignited a massive resistance from Minneapolis’ Third Precinct into the smallest towns and biggest cities in the United States. 

The Party for Socialism and Liberation was proud to participate in this historic movement that brought millions into the streets, many for the first time. New leaders emerged and are now in the struggle for the long haul.

“Justice for George!” was screamed in Trafalgar Square and painted on walls in Port-au-Prince. One Senator was alarmed enough to call for the Army to be sent into the streets and the Mayor of Chicago pulled up the drawbridges to save Trump Tower.

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After Daunte Wright’s Death, Pressure To Get Police Out Of Traffic Enforcement

After she heard that police had killed Daunte Wright during a traffic stop outside of Minneapolis, Eilanne Farhat said she first reacted with “deep exhaustion, heartbreak, and sadness.”

Then she was disturbed. Farhat, executive director of Take Action Minnesota, told The Appeal she was struck by how frequently stories of police killings of unarmed people, often people of color, have made headlines in recent years. 

Since 2015, at least 135 unarmed Black men and women have been killed by police during traffic stops, according to a January investigation by NPR. Now, after Wright’s death and other recent violent encounters between Black people and police, experts and advocates say it’s past time for cities to move traffic enforcement away from law enforcement.

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Murder Of Daunte Wright Ruined Derek Chauvin Show Trial

The fix was in. The U.S. state was determined to demonstrate to the world that its system was able to render “justice” to its captive African/Black population.

So, unlike in the handful of cases where charges were brought against police officers for killing a Black or Brown person, the prosecutors this time did not pretend to follow the demands of the ill-informed public to bring charges of first degree or second-degree murder that would set a bar for conviction so high, it could not be met. That is a favorite strategy of prosecutors when conviction is not what they are looking for. 

The prosecutors in the Derek Chauvin case did the opposite. They stacked the charges in a way that would make it impossible to escape a conviction. And everyone fell in line because the stakes were so high. Could the Shining City on the Hill, whose leadership was now associated with the “decent” Democrats, render justice for the killer of George Floyd?

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Union Members Expel National Guard From St Paul Minnesota Labor Center

Following several union meetings on Wednesday night, I was made aware that a National Guard unit was occupying the St. Paul Labor Center in downtown St. Paul, Minnesota. Other union members and I were sharply aware of the National Guard’s role in repressing protests during the trial of Derek Chauvin and the recent killing of Daunte Wright, and we concluded immediately that our union hall had no place in those militarized efforts against the Black community, activists, and working class people.  

Rank and file union members, community activists, and various union staff members assembled at the Labor Center Wednesday night and found more than 15 armored vehicles, and 50 National Guard troops had been given the keys to the central union facility. Workers from CWA, MNA, UBC and other locals informed the soldiers

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Another Man Of Color Was Murdered By Police Outside Of Minneapolis

(April 11, 2021) – This afternoon, Daunte Wright was killed by a police officer and then left lying in the streets for hours in Brooklyn Center, a suburb of Minneapolis. Wright, age 20, was in his own car when he was stopped by police. A few minutes later, the officer shot and killed him, just a few miles from where Derek Chauvin choked George Floyd to death. This is but the latest in a long and violent string of murders of people of color — specifically Black men — by the cops. 

Protesters gathered almost immediately to express their rage both at the murder of Wright and at the ongoing problems of racist police violence. The cops responded aggressively, arriving in riot gear and shooting rubber bullets into the crowd, injuring at least one protester.

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The Right To Protest Wasn’t Given – It Was Won

United Kingdom – Over the last few weeks, the brutal policing of protests in Bristol has been profoundly disturbing. The right to peaceful assembly and protest are fundamental principles of any democracy, and the rich history of dissent in this country show us that they literally can change the course of history. Nobody knows this better than the people of Bristol, a city whose radicalism has seen it on the frontlines of change.

The Bristol Bus Boycott of 1963 drew national attention to racism in public life, playing a key role in securing the enactment of subsequent race relations legislation that outlawed racial discrimination in public places, housing and employment. This radicalism has been with us in recent years, with last summer’s wave of Black Lives Matter protests seeing the removal of Bristol’s statue honouring the slave owner Edward Colston.

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