Picture by Sarah Seltzer
Momentum has been building in the movement to end stop-and-frisk, but many were still amazed at the size of the crowd Sunday.
A Father’s Day crowd that some estimated to be as large as 50,000 marched in silent protest on Sunday afternoon in NYC, letting Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly know, in no uncertain terms, that they've had enough of the NYPD's policy of stop-and-frisk, a racial profiling tactic that has resulted in the illegal arrests of tens of thousands of young black and Latino men.
While the movement to end stop-and-frisk has been growing, many were amazed at the size of the crowd Sunday. The march included the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the 1199 Service Employees International Union, and the National Action Network, as well as community organizing from groups like VOCAL-NY, the grassroots stop-and-frisk coalition and LGBT-rights groups. Organizer Leslie Cagan told AlterNet that more than 300 groups endorsed the march. The outpouring of solidarity, she said, shows that, “The people are ready, and the time has come.”
The march, led by luminaries like Ben Jealous, head of the NAACP, and Al Sharpton, included families of all races and stretched from East Harlem, the sixth highest neighborhood for stop-and-frisk, all the way down 5th Avenue to East 79th St., close to Mayor Bloomberg's townhouse. At the end of the march a rowdy group gathered near the Bloomberg residence and some scuffles erupted between protesters and police. The NYPD made a handful of arrests.
Stop-and-frisk most often targets young men, and the Father’s Day march was full of dads who wanted to protect their children from the degradation of a suspicionless stop.
New Yorker Derek Perkenson told AlterNet he marched with his young children to help them build an understanding of social justice. “I want them to know what’s going on, to know the truth despite the propaganda we see on TV,” said Perkenson, who said he knows firsthand what a stop-and-frisk feels like. “I’ve been stopped and frisked many a time,” he said, “and it feels like a violation, it feels embarrassing. They still treat you like a criminal, even after they find nothing on you.”
“My kids are black,” Perkenson added, “So they probably will get stopped and frisked one day, but maybe we can do something positive before that happens.”
Stop-and-frisk has risen 600 percent since Bloomberg took office and the NYPD is on track to stop 800,000 people this year. Media attention surrounding the stunning increase of stop-and-frisk and overwhelming data that the tactic does not effectively meet its goal of uncovering guns, has pushed public opinion toward reform.
President and CEO of the NAACP, Benjamin Jealous, explained to AlterNet that Sunday’s march is rooted in the long, historic struggle for racial justice. “In 1917 we called for a national, silent march down 5th Avenue to call for a national movement to end lynchmob violence. In 2012 we called for the silent march down 5th Avenue to call for a national movement to end racial profiling. Last time we had to start in the South; this time we had to start right here in the city.”
Jealous explained that New York’s massive Father’s Day march is of national importance. “The Trayvon Martin case, the Ramarley Graham case, are all very much of one piece, where our young men and boys simply are vulnerable,” Jealous said. “And so while we have to end stand-your-ground [laws], if we’re really going to stop the Trayvon Martins, the Ramarley Grahams, the Rodney Kings of the world from happening, we have to end racial profiling. This movement won’t end until stop-and-frisk is over,” said Jealous.
Jealous was not the only one to mention Graham, an 18-year-old the NYPD shot and killed in the bathroom of his home, just feet away from his grandmother and 4-year-old brother. A large contingent of supporters marched alongside the Graham family. Ramarley Graham’s mother, Constance Malcolm, told AlterNet that her son would still be here if it weren’t for racist policing. “Ramarley was a young, black man, and racial profiling and stop-and-frisk is a part of his death. It caused him to die,” Malcolm said. She said that while it is hard for her family to spend their first Father’s Day without Graham, she felt good to be a part of a larger movement. “It’s Father’s Day and Ramarley’s not here with his father. It shouldn’t have happened. it didn’t need to be, but it is. And that’s why we’re here. We're not asking for justice, we’re demanding it,” Malcolm said.
Malcolm is determined to prevent other families from experiencing her heartbreak. “This doesn’t just affect Ramarley. It affects all young black and Hispanic men. Ramarley’s gone, and I’m fighting for the others who are left here,” she told AlterNet. “This march goes to show that we can be united as one people to make changes, because the law has to change.”
Kenneth Chamberlain, Jr., whose 68-year-old father was killed by the NYPD in November, said he marched to show support for the Grahams. His father, Kenneth Chamberlain Sr. was a retired corrections officer and former Marine who had accidentally triggered his medical alert device. The NYPD refused to leave his home after he told them he did not intend to call them.
“They took the door off the hinges, they fired a Taser at my father, shot him twice with a beanbag shot gun, and then fired a fatal shot in his chest and killed him,” Chamberlain, Jr. told AlterNet. “Today is the first Father's Day that my dad is not here, so it’s very hard for me, but I can’t think of anything I would rather be doing than to show honor to him. if I can stay focused, I won’t feel so sad,” said Chamberlain, a father himself. “Ending stop-and-frisk is the jumping-off point. You have to start somewhere, and it’s evident stop-and-frisk is racial profiling.”
Grassroots stop stop-and-frisk organizer Joe LaSalle told AlterNet that he is thrilled to spend Father’s Day with a different family, one united to end racism in the NYPD.
“I’m happy to be here with so many people that I don’t know, together as a family, on behalf of Ramarley Graham and Kenneth Chamberlain and other brothers and sisters killed by the NYPD,” LaSalle told AlterNet. “We’re tired of our kids being murdered by the NYPD, we’re tired of being stopped and frisked, and we want change to happen.”
LaSalle says he has been stopped hundreds of times. A father himself, his mission this Father’s Day was personal. “My 15-year-old son was stopped and frisked, and the police roughed him up a little bit, called him a 'mutt,' which, for Puerto Rican means a mixed breed, an animal. It was very humiliating. The funny thing is he wanted to become a police officer, and now, forget about it.
Link to original article from AlterNet
Page 22 of 57
A luxury condo building on New York City’s Upper West Side has gotten clearance from the city to have a separate entrance, or a “poor door,” for low-income tenants, according to the New York Post.
Extell, which is building the 33-story complex, will build a specific door for the 55 affordable housing units it’s including in order to be allowed to build a bigger building. The low-income units, which are available to people making 60 percent of median income or less, will also be in a segment that only contains affordable...
Bryce Covert | Think Progress 03 Aug 2014 Hits:286 New York
Primary season has begun to roll out across the country, including some hotly contested -- and some just plain bizarre -- races for governor, Congress and other local and state offices. One primary of note is in a State Senate race here in New York, and it has already attracted national attention, as well as mine, as it involves my State Senate district. This race is, in many ways, a microcosm of what is wrong with our political process nationally, as it pits an establishment-supported, "Republicrat" -- aka a Democrat...
Pearl Korn | The Huffington Post 29 May 2014 Hits:552 New York
Bill de Blasio overwhelmingly was elected mayor here Tuesday, becoming the first Democrat to lead New York in 20 years and ushering in a new era of activist liberal governance in the nation’s largest city.
Shortly after polls closed at 9 p.m., several networks projected that de Blasio soundly defeated Republican Joe Lhota, a protégé of former mayor Rudy Giuliani.
De Blasio campaigned on a mantle of progressive change following Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s 12 years in office, highlighting what he saw as “a tale of two cities.” The moneyed Manhattan elite have...
Phillip Rucker | The Washington Post 05 Nov 2013 Hits:514 New York
A US federal appeals court has blocked a previous ruling against New York City’s stop-and-frisk policy. In addition, the judge who made the ruling was removed from the case, the AP reported.
The appeals court alleges Judge Scheindlin “improperly urged plaintiffs’ counsel to file suit as ‘related’ to a 1999 case previously assigned to her and because of certain media interviews,” S.D.N.Y. Blog reported Thursday.
Judge Shira Scheindlin ruled in August the New York Police Department’s policing method was unconstitutional under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments.
Scheindlin found the NYPD’s 4.4 million stops...
RT 31 Oct 2013 Hits:349 New York
In writing about last night’s raucous NYC mayoral debate between Bill de Blasio and Joe Lhota, Michael Powell of the New York Times nailed de Blasio as a Nation sort of guy, but suggested that he might not be so forever.
“The man likely to be the next mayor, Mr. de Blasio now sometimes seems less suggestive of a Nation magazine star than a savvy, even cool-eyed pol. (It’s worth noting that he barred reporters from his fund-raiser and declined to make public a list of the guests),” writes Powell. He’s...
Leslie Savan | The Nation 24 Oct 2013 Hits:400 New York
Prepared to remember next November, nearly 40 protesters demonstrated Tuesday outside Rep. Chris Gibson’s, R-19, Kinderhook office for him to “stop the madness” and act before tomorrow when the federal government may no longer be able to pay its bills.
Protesters later marched on Gibson’s office to shred a $174,000 check made out to him by American taxpayers “for doing nothing,” Susan Weber, a MoveOn.org regional organizer, added.
“This is Chris Gibson’s congressional salary that he’s not earning because he’s voted to shut our government down,” she said.
Protest leaders from MoveOn.org assembled...
Joe Gentile Columbia-Greene Media 16 Oct 2013 Hits:521 New York
Leroy Downes, a plaintiff in the stop-and-frisk trial, spoke at a news conference after a federal judge ruled that the practice violated the rights of minorities. (Ruth Fremson/The New York Times
In a repudiation of a major element in the Bloomberg administration’s crime-fighting legacy, a federal judge has found that the stop-and-frisk tactics of the New York Police Department violated the constitutional rights of minorities in New York, and called for a federal monitor to oversee broad reforms.
In a blistering decision issued on Monday, the judge, Shira A....
Joseph Goldstein | The New York Times 12 Aug 2013 Hits:510 New York
Our friends in New York at PNHP NY Metro, IATSE Local 1, Single Payer New York, and Metro New York Health Care for All Campaign were organizing a model of collaboration that will advance the cause of Health Care for All in every district. In Albany that day they forged agreements for the majority of the Assembly to sign as co-sponsors toNEW YORK HEALTH!
New York Health is legislation introduced byAssemblyman Gottfried and Senator Perkins (A. 5389-A / S. 2078-A), that if passed, would establish a universal, single payer health program...
Healthcare for All Issue Team 25 Jun 2013 Hits:567 New York
Early Tuesday morning, the New York Times broke the news of the arrest of a state senator and a city councilman in a major federal corruption probe. They are accused of attempted to rig the city’s upcoming mayoral election. Four other New York political figures from both sides of the aisle were arrested as part of the alleged scheme.
Intrigued? Confused? Us too. Here’s everything you need to know about the case.
What happened? The probe involves both the New York City mayoral race and a development project in Spring Valley, New...
Rachel Weiner | The Washington Post 03 Apr 2013 Hits:684 New York
Tony Bennett and Al Sharpton joined a rally in Harlem to demand nationwide gun control legislation.
Each time Milagros Ortega saw a city council member pass by her on Thursday at a rally against gun violence, she stopped them and held up the picture she was wearing around her neck.
“This is my son Francisco. He was shot and killed two months ago at the Queensbridge Houses. Please make other politicians pass gun control around the country,” she told politician after politician at a Harlem gathering to encourage other states to pass...
Alyssa Figueroa | AlterNet 24 Mar 2013 Hits:499 New York
The New York State Assembly has approved, by a 95 to 40 vote, a two-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in New York. While it's unlikely to be passed in the Senate, the action reflects state lawmaker's growing worries about potential health impacts from the natural gas drilling process.
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has led the way in recent days to ban hydrofracking for at least another two years in New York. The Speaker says right now, there are too many unanswered questions....
Karen DeWitt | North Country Public Radio 08 Mar 2013 Hits:662 New York
The Town Board of Woodstock, New York at its meeting on January 15 reviewed and adopted a resolution in support of a NY State law to criminalize hydraulic fracturing and related activities. The Town will submit its resolution supporting NY Public Law #1 to the New York State Legislature for implementation. Some 40 citizens in attendance resoundingly supported the decision.
This resolution (attached) is in support of NY Public Law #1, which makes hydraulic fracturing for oil and gas and all related activities crimes under the state penal code. NY Public...
Linda Leeds | Sovereign People's Action Network 17 Jan 2013 Hits:2903 New York
Two hundred workers from dozens of fast food outlets in New York City—including McDonald's, Burger King, Wendy's, Domino's, and Taco Bell—walked off their jobs Thursday morning to demand $15 an hour in pay and the right to form their own independent union, according to the organizers of Fast Food Forward.
It is the largest strike ever in the United States against the $200-billion-a-year fast food industry and represents the latest in a wave of collective actions by low-wage workers to change conditions in their...
David Moberg | In These Million 30 Nov 2012 Hits:796 New York
On Wednesday night, as a fierce northeaster bore down on the weather-beaten Rockaways, the relief groups with a noticeable presence on the battered Queens peninsula were these: the National Guard, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Police and Sanitation Departments — and Occupy Sandy, a do-it-yourself outfit recently established by Occupy Wall Street.
This stretch of the coast remained apocalyptic, with buildings burned like Dresden and ragged figures shuffling past the trash heaps. There was still no power, and parking lots were awash with...
Alan Feur | New York Times 12 Nov 2012 Hits:989 New York
NEW YORK -- A federal appeals court in Manhattan has become the second in the nation to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued its ruling Thursday. The decision upholds a lower court judge who ruled that the 1996 law that defines marriage as involving a man and a woman was unconstitutional.
The three-judge panel says the law violates equal protection. A federal appeals court in Boston earlier this year also found it unconstitutional.
The issue is expected to be decided by the...
Huffington Post / AP 18 Oct 2012 Hits:874 New York
In Westchester County, a television advertisement accused a Democrat running for the State Senate of using campaign money to treat himself to fancy dinners. In Rochester, a commercial branded a…
Fired by a union-busting boss, the workers occupied their restuarant and then opened their own sidewalk cafe--forcing their owner to cede to their demands.
The restaurant workers who were…
On Thursday, the Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity arrived in New York City, one of the tour's last stops in the United States. The caravan is…
As foreclosures continue to put historic pressure on the nation’s rental market, slumlords now have more opportunity than ever to prey on the most vulnerable of tenants.
Andrea Evans (l.) is the only black representative on the 11-member state Parole Board after Gov. Cuomo refused to renew the term of the panel's lone black male,…
Rep. Charles Rangel’s victory in the Democratic primary for New York's 13th Congressional District shows that – despite demographic changes in his district, ethics woes, and a censure vote…
Picture by Sarah Seltzer
Momentum has been building in the movement to end stop-and-frisk, but many were still amazed at the size of the crowd Sunday.
A Father’s Day crowd that some…
Last September 22, when Occupy Wall Street was just five days old, labor activists from the encampment at Zuccotti Park disrupted an auction at Sotheby's in support of…
The groundswell of opposition to the dirty and dangerous practice of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in New York has come from all corners of the state and from…
For support in organizing within your state, contact:
Email us at: email@example.com
New York City Want to bring progressive change to New York? Start a PDA chapter; send us an email and we'll get you started.
PDA is organized around several core issues. These issues include:
Each team hosts a monthly conference call. Calls feature legislators, staffers and other policy experts. On these calls we determine PDA legislation to support as well as actions and future events.