OpenLetter to Frisco 5
Ihumbly take this opportunity to write to you today. First of all, letme thank you for the courage and determination that you have shown bycarrying out the hunger strike for the best interests of thecommunity. San Francisco can never thank you more. Your bold step tocombat the menace of police brutality, racism, housing anddisplacement problems has not gone unnoticed (Hoodline 1). The fiveof you have given me the motivation to stand up and join you in yourcourse for justice and humanity.
AsI understand fully, our country’s constitution provides for theliberty and freedom of every citizen. This is a sovereign countrywith great values which are traced back to the founding fathers ofthis nation. Right to life is not only a universal right but a giftfrom God that should not be taken by anyone without following the lawof the land. The recent police killings of innocent civilians in yourarea have shown how hostile the situation is in the country. Weshould all stand up and air our grievances without fear orintimidation.
Inmy St. Louis hometown, we have experienced the same scenario.Everyday my fellow youths are ransacked and beaten badly by thepolice in the name of fighting crime and drug menace. Any youthgrouping is always seen as a gang, irrespective of their genuineactivities. Recently, my neighbor’s son was beaten mercilessly bythe police under false pretense of drinking and disorderly charges.He is currently fighting for his life in a local hospital’sIntensive Care Unit. A month ago another young black gentleman fromthe neighborhood was locked up for a week in a police cell. He waserroneously charged with drug trafficking because of walking late atnight with a bag pack. Every arrest in this neighborhood especiallythat involves black people is mired with police brutality, vulgarlanguage and beatings. The orderliness seen when arresting the whitecommunity is absent here.
Thecommunity welfare group has tried to approach various localauthorities including mayor’s office and police department butlittle has been done to subvert this behavior. Everyone turn a blindeye to the increasingly violent behavior displayed by police towardscertain racial groups. The group tried to hold a public demonstrationthree months ago but the police superintendent and the mayor refusedto grant them permission. They claimed that the group was trying toinstigate violence in a peaceful town.
Iwrote to you today to shed light on the brutality seen in mycommunity and request that you organize a similar hunger strike hereto mobilize the people. Many of the people are afraid to air theirvoices and grievances due to fear of losing their jobs and sources oflivelihood. Intimidation from senior police officers is also a hiddenfactor. My prayer and wish is to see the police respect the rule oflaw and follow the constitution to the letter.
Everyman is perceived innocent until proven guilty. However, the policetake the law in their own hands. They abuse the same constitutionthey are supposed to uphold and protect. I would also request thatyou use the media adequately in the advocacy campaigns so that theworld can know the plight of the people especially the coloredcommunity. Legal proceedings against the violent police can also beadvocated and genuine sentences given. Police code of conduct shouldbe reviewed in an effort to tame the rogue police officers.
Onceagain, I appreciate your spirit of perseverance and commitment inyour quest for human rights protection. I hope to hear from you soon.
Hoodline.(2016). In Their Words: The Frisco Five Hunger Strike. Hoodline.Com.Retrieved From,<http://hoodline.com/2016/05/in-their-words-the-frisco-five-hunger-strike>