TeleSur News Posted Mon., Oct.03, 2016
Los Angeles is reeling. The region has seen three men of color slain by police in the last three days.
In the city of Pasadena, Reginald Thomas, Jr., was killed Friday in his home by six police officers who were aware that he suffered from mental illness. On Saturday night, 18-year old Carnell Snell Jr. was chased down and killed by police in LA as his younger sister looked on. And on Sunday, a Chicano man believed to be between 18 and 22 years old was gunned down by police in South Central LA, by cops who were on the hunt for a “gang member.”
Protests have erupted in response to each of these killings, with angry and weary demonstrators pouring out into the streets and shutting down traffic.
With a volley of signs emblazoned with phrases such as “Jail killer cops!”, protesters even marched to Mayor Eric Garcetti’s home in the Tony Hancock Park neighborhood late Saturday, demonstrating until the wee hours.
The LAPD has responded by cracking down on demonstrators, announcing a citywide tactical alert Sunday night. With police clad in riot gear, Abdullah described a community afire with “righteous indignation.”
Los Angeles is, historically, a hub of rebellion in the U.S. The first in an epoch of riots that swept across the country in the late 1960s was kicked off in 1965 Los Angeles during the Watts Rebellion, when a police officer fatally shot an unarmed Black motorist who was rushing his pregnant wife to the hospital.
But as police violence has remained static, the resistance movements are evolving. No longer are protesters merely demanding independent investigations or civilian review boards.
“Justice would look like abolishing the police,” Julia Wallace, a co-founder of Strike Against Police Terror and a contributor at Left Voice, told teleSUR. “(Police) hold an incredible amount of wealth and privilege.”
Wallace added that only by getting rid of capitalism will we see some semblance of justice. “Until we organize economically … targeting economic centers of power, we won’t (see change).”
“A state of war has been declared on Black people,” said Abdullah. “We can’t find justice for Thomas, Jr., Carnell Snell (and others), but their lives can have meaning if we develop solutions that are healing … (and dismantle) the system.”