Boycott In Support of Sean Bell NYC DeOnte Rawlings DC Print
Written by Robert ID4356   
Tuesday, 13 May 2008 09:28

Society has a responsibility to protect all its citizens, yet society consistently turns its back when black men are killed by the police. Yet black dollars drive the American economy. It's time to send a message with money--or the lack thereof.

Black Legacy, the Black student organization at Lehman College ( Bronx, NY ), is organizing a boycott from May 25th to May 31st, in New York City and Washington DC, to protest the injustices in the Sean Bell and DeOnte Rawlings cases.

Sean Bell was a 23-year-old father of two who was killed by five NYPD officers on the morning of his wedding day, November 25, 2006. The officers fired a total of 50 shots, saying they feared Bell had a gun in his car; there was no weapon. Three of the officers were charged; two with manslaughter, one with reckless endangerment. All were acquitted.

DeOnte Rawlings was a 14-year-old, shot and killed by an off-duty D.C. police officer on September 17, 2007. The officer went out to look for his bike, and claimed to see DeOnte riding it; when he get out the car, DeOnte supposedly shot at him, and the officer returned fire. The gun DeOnte supposedly used has never been recovered, the bike didn''t show up until several days later, there was no residue on DeOnte's fingers indicating he shot a gun, and his autopsy showed he was brutally beaten before being shot in the back of the head. The prosecutor ruled that there was no evidence to charge the officer with any wrongdoing, and closed the case.

These are only two examples of police abuse of power, sanctioned by the larger society--but can be combated with economic power. For 7 days, during the week of Memorial Day ( May 25th to May 31st ), people in New York and Washington, DC should not spend any money: no restaurant outings, fast food purchases, no unnecessary traveling, no shopping trips, etc. It's time to take a stand and stop supporting a system that doesn''t serve all people justly and fairly. If the urge to spend becomes overwhelming, contribute instead to a community organization or the Sean Bell Benefit Fund, c/o Mitchell Law Office, 225 Broadway, Suite 1410, New York, NY 10007.

The boycott is concentrated in New York and Washington DC to make an impact, and will only last for seven days. That's about one day for every seven bullets shot at Sean Bell and his two friends, Trent Benefield and Joseph Guzman, and one day for every two years of DeOnte Rawlings'' life. All support and participation is greatly appreciated and needed to make this boycott a success. The boycott is a statement--"why should we support a system that says it's ok to kill us?" People in other areas who wish to participate are welcome to do so.

For more information or fliers, contact Black Legacy and a representative will reply within 24 hours.

Black Legacy

250 Bedford Park Boulevard, SLB Rm 205A

Bronx, NY 10468

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