Statement from the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement
in Support of the Monumental 5.
Prepared and submitted by Lumumba Bandele, Community Organizer (July 5, 2011)
The Malcolm X Grassroots Movement stands in solidarity and support of the Monumental 5 and the dozens of other people who were attacked by members of the New York Police Department (NYPD) on the night of June 28, 2011.
This attack by NYPD is not new and is becoming a more recognizable part of NYPD’s identity. Communities of color continue to fall victim to police misconduct and illegal policing tactics.
According to the ACLU [American Civil Liberties Union]: In 2010 alone, NYPD officers made over half a million stops, 85 percent of which targeted people of color. The reason given by NYPD for what are called “stop-and-frisk” activities were guns. In all of these cases, however, less than 0.2 percent of “stop-and-frisk” resulted in guns being found.
According to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund: Blacks and Latinos represent over 90% of all citywide trespass arrests on NYCHA [New York City Housing Authority] property although we make up only 54% of the New York City population.
The presence of police in NYC public schools adds to this dynamic as thousands of children of color are forced to learn under the threatening presence of the very institution that will more than likely “stop-and-frisk” them.
The Malcolm X Grassroots Movement stands with the Monumental 5 in calling for a city-wide community response. We are calling on community members to adopt a culture of observation with the NYPD. Collectively, we also suggest the following community action steps:
1. Join the movement to demand that all charges against the Monumental 5 be dropped AND that the officers responsible for these attacks be brought to justice.
2. Get trained in Cop Watch and Know Your Rights programs. The People’s Justice Coalition will host a session for volunteers on Thursday, July 14 from 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm at the Center for Constitutional Rights located at 666 Broadway (on the 6th Floor) in New York City. More information can be found at www.peoplesjustice.org.
3. Attend all the upcoming court dates of the Monumental 5. A court date should not go by where they are in the court room alone.
4. Attend the upcoming town hall meeting (to be convened in the immediate future) to discuss what happened at Tammany Hall on June 28 and to discuss the increased harassment on communities of color by NYPD. There, people will be educated on how to monitor NYPD toward getting them to develop a system of accountability. Information will be posted at www.monumental5.bucktownusa.com
We will not continue to be victims of police misconduct! We will continue to organize for real police accountability.
Member, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement
917.415.5653 | LBandele@yahoo.com
For general information about the Monumental 5, go to www.monumental5.bucktownusa.com.
Media inquiries are directed to 718.756.8501. Get official press releases at AKILAWORKSONGS.com/ThePressRoom