Silent Protest Turned Loud
A silent march being held in by thousands of people in New York City against the NYPD’s ‘stop-and-frisk’ tactics was accentuated by an explosion of loud voices.
“We’ve got to fight back, we can’t be silent!” a group of activists shouted as they passed the home of Mayor Michael Bloomberg, just off Fifth Avenue.
Critics say the NYPD’s practice of stopping, questioning and searching people who police consider suspicious is illegal and humiliating to hundreds of thousands of law-abiding blacks and Hispanics. Last year, the NYPD stopped close to 700,000 people, up from more than 90,000 a decade ago.
All Are United
“We are black, white, Asian, LGBT, straight, Jewish, Muslim and Christian,” New York City Council member Jumaane Williams said before Sunday’s march began, standing alongside American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten. “Mayor Bloomberg has been our great uniter. We’ve been screaming loudly, and he hasn’t heard us, but hopefully he’ll hear the deafening silence.”
The NYPD last year stopped more than 685,000 people, predominantly young black and Hispanic men, according to the New York Civil Liberties Union.
“In most cities, when you ask who gets beaten up by the cops, the answer comes back: black people, people of color, and the gay community,” Benjamin Jealous, head of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, said on MSNBC.