Saturday, April 26, 2008


There is one thing about being inspired. There is another thing about being inspired for a purpose of doing. Today was one of those days. A day for Doing. I often remind Black folk that our work is not done. Like any job or career pursuit, one does not go into it with just working for that day and then coasting on a days profit. There is  a point in one’s life when we have to choose between what is RIGHT and what is EASY. Today was a day for choosing what is RIGHT.

Twenty-four hours after the damning decision that cast cold stones into the hearts of the Bell family, a community gathered to express that although you were blindsided by the legal system, your community has your back and will not allow New York City, the State, a Country and quite possibly the World to witness how the NYPD and the New York City Justice System to create a separate Black or Brown rule. The role we all will play isn’t that of Revenge or Reretribution but of LOVE; a Love for keeping children alive. The community has decided that Black and Brown children are not and will no longer be defined as Collateral Damage as part of the rule of Over Policing without Accountability.

Policing is never the issue when talking about a community. Communities want Policing and look to law enforcement as part of keeping rule in a Nation of Laws, but the cancer that has grown, maturated and expanded has inflicted deadly damage to Black Families in great numbers and the only people who are most concerned are Black folk. Today’s rally is a reaffirmation that the NYPD and New York City will no longer get a pass. Every death will be deal with a series of political assaults, economic shut downs and civil disobedience. A declaration of commitment from Religious, Social and Community Groups and individuals were signed and a public understanding that sacrifices will need to be made for the many who walk the streets Disconnected from the reality that WORK NEEDS TO BE DONE to save the children of tomorrow.

April 25, 2008, they killed Sean all over again. I’m still praying for justice, because this is far from over. Every march, every protest, every rally, I’m going to be right up front.”, said Paultre Bell. This is what the public will hear as the universal sound bite, which will be looped over, and over for days to come and as so, forgotten by the media and public often does. What the rest of the world needed to know were the words that followed:

I may have broken down, but I'm OK. I was bent, but I’m not broken.” she assured the Ralliers, and with those words, the tears flowed throughout the hall.

Valerie Bell, the mother of Sean Bell spoke, “I didn’t go through labor pains with my son because he was born C-section. But on Nov. 25, 2006, that’s when my labor pains started. The pains that come with bringing life into the World. When a mother looses a child to violence or any kind of loss, she experiences those pains all over again. I felt my labor pains then.”, as she explains while holding her stomach.

Through out the rally, Rev. Al Sharpton and the families detailed and answered why it was important and necessary for the methodology before the trail and to the day as well as where the Community goes next. We learned how Youth organizations are helping, partnering and not being absorbed but given free reign to develop their own strategies to enforce change in the community. With emphasis on Non-Violent Disobedience, part of the rally was making it a matter of letting those who plan to participate, understand that people talk about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. but people don’t understand him. So as part of the lesson of demanding Massive Civil Rights, we have to look back in history. Highlighted was the legal decision, which lead to the Dred Scott Decision of 1857 where Courts decided that there were no Black Rights that any White was bound to Respect. If you understand the nature of that 1857 decision and how the argument to support that law was applicable to the justification that Justice Arthur J. Cooperman gave as to why the NYPD aren’t responsible for taking innocent life and the reason why obsessive force was merited in the Sean Bell case, the decision sends a message that there is a DIFFERENCE between Black lives and White lives. Black Justice and White Justice. That we value the lives of "caged animals" in zoos more than the freedoms of innocent Black American citizens.

So all the while Black and Brown people were meeting peacefully, the City of New York is pumping millions of dollars beefing up patrols, having armed guards standing outside the homes of the attorneys and offices involved in the shooting, and having helicopters flying over Judge Cooperman’s house and while this happening, in a Peaceful Rally we are discussing meetings with the Attorney General and meeting with Representative John Conyers Jr. of Michigan, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee. So we all sit back and call to our Faith in GOD to give a clear path for Righting a WRONG and in “fear”, the NYPD cling to tax payer dollars to beef up against an enemy that doesn't exist. Clueless in understanding how all the training and military style conditioning has no purpose against a Peaceful people. So what do they do NEXT?

Calling upon biblical text, Rev. Al Sharpton tells stories or in this case, gives examples of what we will all face as people demanding JUSTICE, the rules by which the agents against positive change will use. How the rules change for those that question when the game all of a sudden is skewed against Black folk when their fairness is written out. How there will be times when those dressed to protect will test you by agitation and ridicule, but if you are in the know, if you know the truth in your objective, you can overcome it all without screaming or physical violence. The law is the LAW and Black folk will inquire, challenge, change and keep LAW. That is how it was. How it is and how it will always be because when you rest, somehow, some way, we can go from 2008 to 1875 in the time it takes to send off 50 rounds of bullets.

It has always been a struggle to keep young men alive when the “wicked” are in change. You can find this in the Old Testament with Abraham, in the New Testament with Jesus and throughout history. Sean Bell was a good YOUNG man and what happened to him was wicked.”, spoken by Rev. Al Sharpton.

So now the commitment begins and from a cross section of Black and Brown New Yorkers are and have made the commitment. Now that Black folk have made the pledge to save Black Babies, it is only a matter of time before Asian, Foreign born as well as other People of Color will come along and JOIN once they realize that their children are next and need equal protect.

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