You’ve reached the activism portion of today’s show. Now that you’re informed and angry, here’s what you can do about it. Today’s activism: We Charge Genocide.
Police violence is an epidemic in this country. The extrajudicial murder of yet another person of color at police hands makes headlines so often, I’m now routinely producing an episode on the most recent set of protests and demands for justice when a new wave breaks out.
With so much happening around police brutality, the next several activism segments are going to focus on specific communities targeted by law enforcement and tactics being highlighted for change. Writers and advocates from The Nation and TruthOut are among those calling for an end to policing altogether. In the words of Mychal Denzel Smith: “We need to abolish the pillars of white supremacy and I think the police is one of those.”
Until that day, there are practices to end and departments and individual officers to hold accountable. The group leading that work in Chicago is We Charge Genocide.
"To Organize. To Transform. To End Police Violence.” — a simple slogan that has taken them all the way to the United Nations Committee Against Torture in Geneva. They are a grassroots, inter-generational volunteer group who has created some amazing resources through community organizing, protest and their website WeChargeGenocide.org.
Chicago residents can contact their alderman about the pending reparations ordinance, stay up to date on hearings, and report their encounters with the CPD. Their hashtag #ChiCopWatch and handle @ChiCopWatch aggregate eye witness accounts, personal experiences, and reports from hearings and protests.
You can also sign their petition demanding CPD detective Dante Servin be permanently removed from the force following his March 21, 2012 shooting of Rekia Boyd. The courts refuse to hold him accountable for her murder, but the Police Board can step in to terminate his employment. Really, it’s the least they can do.
The We Charge Genocide website also has some amazing graphics, so an easy way to show your support and solidarity is to post those on your social media networks. Give them a follow on Twitter and a like on Facebook to make their campaigns more visible and help them build a broad coalition for change.
Support and follow: We Charge Genocide on Facebook and on Twitter via @ChiCopWatch and #ChiCopWatch
Report police misconduct: "Report Encounter"
SIGN: "Fire Chicago Police Detective Dante Servin", #Justice4Rekia via @ColorOfChange’s I Am Color of Change
"In Order to End Police Brutality, We Need to End the Police” by Mychal Denzel Smith at The Nation
"Abolish the Police. Instead, Let’s Have Full Social, Economic, and Political Equality.” by Mychal Denzel Smith at The Nation
"The disappeared: Chicago police detain Americans at abuse-laden 'black site’” by Spencer Ackerman at The Guardian
"Police ‘Reforms' You Should Always Oppose” by Mariame Kaba of Project NIA via Truthout
"Yet Another Victim: Rekia Boyd Killed by Off-Duty Officer” by Mychal Denzel Smith at Ebody
"Black Women Aren’t Just Secondary Casualties of Aggressive Policing” by Dani McClain at The Nation
Hear the segment in context:
Episode #919 "We thought we were free (Police State)"
Written by BOTL social media/activism director Katie Klabusich
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