The founder of MomsRising wrote a book Marching On about how to be effective in lobbying for change. Everything she talks about is right.
This will be the last political communique for now. I want to move on.
For today I want to add my own thoughts to the author’s.
In July 1999 I fled Staten Island for Brooklyn.
The Verrazano Bridge was known as the Guinea Gangplank because Italians moved to Staten Island from Brooklyn.
I drove over the bridge in the opposite direction long before it was popular to live in Brooklyn.
For years I had a taste of Conservatism in my own family. I couldn’t abide the Republican mentality on Staten Island.
I had a preview of what was to come: about five years ago a cop killed with his bare hands Eric Garner in a choke hold on Bay Street.
The guy’s only crime was selling loose cigarettes.
Five white guys assaulted a guy I know in a bar down on Bay Street. And none of them were arrested even though one was identified in a police lineup.
They lived; Eric Garner died.
I simply can’t–okay–understand the defenses other people give to justify that cops kill mostly unarmed People of Color.
I try to understand these arguments and can’t.
Here’s the real deal: if you’re a cop who is strong enough to kill a guy with your bare hands then you don’t need to shoot a person to remain safe.
If you’re not strong enough to subdue a person without a gun should you really be a cop?
This is what I think. Years later I’m still thinking of Eric Garner.
I won’t join a protest in the streets. This is because I take medication. If I were arrested and sent to jail I’d deteriorate without treatment.
Since I can’t protest in the streets I will use this blog to speak out when I’m able to.
The cost of silence is too high for any of us.
I used to live on Staten Island. I used to walk on Bay Street. I fled that outer borough as soon as I could.
I can’t breathe thinking of what happened to Eric Garner.
This is all I wanted to write about before returning to my “regularly scheduled programming.”
Yet be aware I will most likely return to political commentating in the future.
I urge American readers to buy and read the book Marching On.
Change is possible. It starts when each of us has the courage to speak out.