WASHINGTON, D.C. — Green Party leaders expressed shock and revulsion after the killings of Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, La., and Philando Castile in St. Paul, Minn., by police officers earlier this week, as well as sympathy for the victims’ loved ones.
Greens have demanded justice for these and other incidents of police murders of black people, with vigorous prosecution of officers and investigation of police departments that tolerate racist and violent behavior. Green Party leaders are supporting proposals for a federal database that tracks police killings and denial of funding for police departments with a pattern of abuse.
Greens also strongly condemned the shooting of police officers, with five deaths, by a sniper during a peaceful demonstration in Dallas, Texas, on July 7 against police violence. Greens reject allegations that Black Lives Matter and others involved in protest are responsible for the Dallas shooting.
The Green Party, in a recent message to Black Lives Matter supporters ( http://www.gp.org/open_letter_black_lives_matter_supporters ) and other recent statements, has called for systematic reforms in the criminal justice system and an end to mass incarceration and racial disparities in arrests, prosecution, and sentencing.
A “call to action” by Rosa Clemente, the Green Party’s 2008 nominee for vice president, expressed the feelings of party members in the wake of the week’s events:
“To where can Black and Brown America turn? We have the hollow-ringing prayers of Hillary Clinton and her ‘super-predator’ sentiments and her track record of helping to usher in the era of incarceration and racial profiling on a national scale. On the other hand we have a Trump persona whose public fascism and racism has reinvigorated every racist in America, many of them, police officers. As a result, America is now a carceral state.
Elected leaders have failed to provide relief, and community has had to fill in the gaps to spread the word and collect the data. Even CNN has helped to lift up the community organizations that are keeping national databases on police killings and called out the federal government’s failure to do so. We have wasted a year on debating meaningless reforms like police body cameras, and yet in the case of Alton Sterling, the cameras fell off the police uniforms and mysteriously turned themselves off.
My heart has been torn in pieces as I watch the press conference with Alton Sterling’s children, as I realize that America is creating a generation of young Black and Brown people whose parents/family members are being killed public execution style as well as being incarcerated, detained and deported every day. Louisiana is epicenter of the carceral state, 1 in 14 Black men in prison,1 in 7 on probation/parole. This is 4th police shooting in less than 48 hours, including Anthony Nunez, 19 killed by San Jose police and Pedro Erik Villanueva 18, killed July 6th by California Highway Partol.
According to the report Operation Ghetto Storm published by the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, police are killing African American and Latinx people every 28 hours and less, these people whose salaries we pay, and neither President Obama or Secretary Clinton have shown any meaningful leadership on the issue.
Our only solution is to defund, demilitarize, and imprison every brutal killer cop. It’s time for white folks, and Green Party members in particular, to march on every police station in this country and shut them down, fill up the jails, stop the flow of traffic and disrupt commerce. We will continue to be out there, but please step up in ways you have never imagined and take arrests, hits and blows. It’s been two long years since Ferguson, and we need a rest.”