Telling Our Stories: MXGM Member Talks NYPD Violence and Calls for Passage of the Community Safety Act

Oct 25, 2012 in New York, PSDC Blog

Greetings. My name is Djibril Toure and I am here today as a lifelong Brooklyn resident and member of the Malcolm X Grassroots to lend my voice to those calling for a change in the NYPD’s Stop & Frisk program, and passage of the Community Safety Act.

I am a college graduate, musician and business owner and I have directly experienced the racially biased stop and frisk policies of the NYPD.  I have had the disheartening experience of walking down the street in my own community where I grew up, being stopped for no reason, forced to stand against a wall and being illegally searched by four officers who demanded that I show them some ID or go to jail. This experience repeated itself so many times over the years that I became involved in providing assistance to others who had experienced the same or many times much worse treatment, sometimes resulting in physical injuries. I have heard too many stories of the humiliation and frustration of regular law abiding community residents who are repeatedly stop & frisked or tricked into consenting to a search. This is an all too common occurrence across neighborhoods and communities in this city. Too many of my peers have shared similarly frustrating stories of being stopped and searched, for no apparent reason without explanation.  The overaggressive policing approach taken in these communities has led to a widespread feeling of mistrust towards the police.

The issue of consent to a search without a warrant is a particularly important one. (Intro. 801) of the Community Safety Act would require that NYPD officers provide their name and rank to the subjects of law enforcement activity, such as New Yorkers being stopped and frisked. The officer would also have to provide the specific reason for the stop and a business card to the person being stopped that includes information on how to file a complaint. In my experience, this is a key issue that must be addressed because often when people in my community are approached by undercover officers for questioning, they do not even initially understand that they are dealing with a police encounter. This often leads to people not being able to identify who they were stopped by. In my personal experience, I have on several occasions witnessed officers refusing to provide their name and badge number – or even providing a false one. Continue reading

India: Maoists support Bharat Bandh (Strike) against gas price hike

TNN | May 27, 2012

BHOPAL: Outlawed Communist Party of India (Maoist) has extended their support to ‘Bharat Bandh’ on May 31 in protest against the unprecedented hike in petrol prices asking the people to be on the forefront of the agitation against the wrong policies of UPA-IIgovernment at the centre.”Petrol prices went up 10 times in 14 months, triggering inflation. People have to stand up against exploitation,” CPI (Maoist) central committee spokesman Abhay said in an e-mail statement sent to TOI.Slamming the UPA-II government for repeatedly making claims poverty was declining, the rebels said increase in petrol prices within few days after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh made such a claim indicated that the government was not concerned about the common masses.

Abhay said the UPA-II and its economists were blaming subsidies for the present economic crisis and were trying to somehow phase out them. “This will only put the already overburdened common man in more trouble”, he added.

Maoists appealed to the people in Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, parts of Maharashtra (Gadchiroli, Gondia, Chandrapur and Bhandara), Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Bihar to actively participate in the Bharat Bandh on May 31.

Philippines: “Armed revolution and the people will frustrate the intensification of militarization in Negros”

A statement by Juanito Magbanua, Spokesperson, NPA Negros Island (Apolinario “Ka Boy” Gatmaitan Command)
February 03, 2012

The Apolinario “Boy” Gatmaitan Command (AGC) salutes the unit of the NPA under the Roselyn “Ka Jean” Pelle Command (North Negros) for a successful military action against the 62nd IB PA where 2 elements of the AFP were killed in action and many others wounded base on initial reports. The encounter took place in Hacienda Lope, Barangay Andres Bonifacio in Cadiz City last January 31, 2012. The said tactical offensive frustrated the AFP’s plan for a coordinated campaign against the NPA in the said area that has been declared by the military as insurgency-free lately.
The AGC also recognizes the bravery and daringness of the members of a yunit under  the Armando Sumayang Command (Southwest Front) that fought  much superior columns of composite forces of the 47th IB PA that assaulted a temporary NPA encampment in Sitio Akol, Brgy Manlocahoc, Sipalay City last January 28, 2012. Four members of the Scout Rangers (SR) were killed in action based on the reports of the locals who saw the bodies secretly taken away by the military. On the other hand, the people are saddened by the martyrdom of a Red Fighter. The military has now occupy the local market and are conducting illegal searches and interrogation of the barrio folks on the area of the firefight.  Sipalay is a target of many foreign mining companies. Continue reading

Egypt: the long shadow of Mubarak and the role of the US

“Long live Egypt’s Supreme Council” — With Mubarak out of power and SCAF taking the reigns, what’s next for the country?
 Joseph Massad
28 Jul 2011
Egyptians have been protesting against the country’s military rulers continuing Mubarak-esque policies [EPA]

Many Egyptians are expressing concerns about the deployment by the ruling Egyptian Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) of the very same political rhetoric previously employed by the Mubarak regime, despite the SCAF’s claim that it is maintaining “neutrality” between “popular” forces; a “neutrality” that it has failed to demonstrate on all fronts.

Indeed, Egyptians who want to transform their uprising into a veritable revolution have responded to the ruling SCAF by refining their definition of the identity of the armed forces. If the famous cry of the anti-Mubarak uprising enjoined the army to stand with the people against the regime, the current cry cleverly differentiates between the SCAF and the army, so that the army rank and file continue to be invoked by the revolutionaries as being on the side of the people – while the SCAF is presented as the political antagonist who seeks to maintain the Mubarak regime with some reforms, albeit without Mubarak.

The army and the revolution

Schisms between the “army” and the revolutionaries started even before the fall of Mubarak, when demonstrations were infiltrated by army soldiers who, we were told, were unknown people, most probably Mubarak state security goons, who allegedly “stole” and donned army uniforms. Evidence of military arrests and torture of demonstrators, including reported stories of “virginity” tests performed on arrested women demonstrators, were later confirmed by military officers. Moreover, Egyptian demonstrators are demanding that all people arrested since the uprising be tried in civilian rather than military courts – and that the continued use of torture by the army be immediately stopped. Continue reading

Bristol, UK: Anti-corporate “direct action” protest against Tesco

Protesters set up barricades

Anti-Tesco protest boils over into riot / Police accused of attacking bystanders

The Independent (UK)

By Kunal Dutta and Oliver Duff

Saturday, 23 April 2011

Hundreds of people set up burning street barricades and hurled rocks at police as anti-Tesco protests in Bristol fast escalated into bloody running battles between officers and residents.

A Tesco Express store in the bohemian neighbourhood of Stokes Croft, in the north of Bristol, became the focal point for the violence, with police claiming that they had uncovered a plot to petrol bomb the store, which opened eight days ago to widespread hostility from the community.

More than 160 police in riot gear, officers on horseback and reinforcements from neighbouring forces fought with protesters for seven hours through the night until dawn yesterday. A swelling, increasingly angry crowd of 300 people upturned bottle banks to gather glass to bombard officers. Continue reading

Egypt: The revolution continues after Mubarak’s fall

Ali Abunimah, The Electronic Intifada, 12 February 2011

Egyptians protest at Tahrir Square on the day Mubarak left office, 11 February. (Matthew Cassel)

Yesterday evening, after it was announced that Hosni Mubarak had met the first demand of the revolution and left office, I headed toward the Egyptian embassy in Amman. The joy on the streets was something I had never experienced before.

From all directions people came, pouring out of cars stuck in gridlocked traffic on Zahran Street and into the side street where the embassy sits. They were young and old and families with children. Egyptian laborers — the unacknowledged back bone of much of the Jordanian economy — sang, carried each other on their shoulders and played drums. Egyptian flags waved and signs were held high. Continue reading

Getting Difficult for India to Control Manipur

 

L) Obstacles put up along NH-39 and a deserted street in Imphal due to a bandh

 

79 bandhs, 10 blockades in recent times take a heavy toll on State

The Sangai Express, Imphal, September 22, 2010

From January 2009 till the current month, Manipur witnessed as many as 79 bandhs and highway blockades ten times.These frequent bandhs and blockades have caused loss of 1/9th of the State per capita income.  According to a Government report, normal life was disrupted by 19 State-wide bandhs last year.

At the district level, there was a district level bandh once in Senapati, twice in Ukhrul, once in Tamenglong, twice in Chandel, once in Thoubal and once in Churachandpur.

In addition, the State witnessed hill districts bandh eight times. There were no separate district-level bandhs in Bishnupur, Imphal East and Imphal West. There were bandhs on National Highways five times and another bandh in Naga dominated districts. Continue reading