Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ready Or Not: They're Ready, They're Coming!

At least twenty protesters participated in the die-in front of the Office of Police Complaints by McPherson Square

One by one they dropped to the ground with signs saying "Black And Brown Lives Matter" and "Demilitarize the Police".  They laid there for four and a half minutes in front of the McPherson Square Metro. The four minutes represents the four and a half hours the body of 18-year-old Michael Brown lied dead on the ground in Ferguson, Missouri.

This was one of the many protests that are happening across the country after the public heard Ferguson's police officer Darren Wilson would not be indicted.

The DC Chapter of the Black Youth Project 100 will hold protests for 28 hours.  BYP100 said every 28 hours a black person dies at the hands of a vigilante or a police officer. The activist group will hold two more protest today while handing out letters that ask for a police review board.

Khadijah McCaskill the organizing chair of the BYP100 said the letter has a lists of demands that BYP would like to see implemented at the Office of  Police Complaints.

Jonathan Lykes explains the Black Youth Project 100 and the institutional policies and systemic racism the affects

"One of the main complaints and one of the main demands that we have is to create a citizen's review board or rather reinstate it because it was there before," said McCaskill "We'd like the citizen's review board to be reflective of D.C. as a whole, add communities that are adversely affected by police brutality."

McCaskill said in order to help eliminate incidents dealing with police brutality the black youth must "stay awake" and become aware. She said they must realize that this is "a movement not a moment" and that this movement requires a lot of persistence.

This is the letter of demands to the executive director of the Office of Police Complaints, Michael G. Tobbin

 Jonathan Lykes held a bullhorn while explaining the demands that public officials need to meet in order to keep black youth safe. The groups call and response could be heard loud and clear. They said "We're Ready, We're Coming". Two of the members of BYP100 delivered the letter during the demonstration. Some of the agendas in the letter included demilitarizing law enforcement, increasing community oversight and accountability over law enforcement.

"We understand that this is a long-term strategy to undo the systemic and intuitional racism in our society. Point Blank. So that's what we're hear to declare, the love and the appreciation of black life. And we're here to call out institutional policies," said Lykes.

BYP100 said they are a non violent organization and they are strategic. The organization started at the Metro Police Department early this morning and they will go to the city council in the afternoon.

There will be protest in Mt. Vernon Square at 7p.m. Protestors will march from Mt. Vernon Square to Chinatown.

Video of Jonathan Lykes talking in front of Office of Police Complaints after delivering the letter to Michael G. Tobbin's office.

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