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In death, Bland has become something of a poster child for police violence against black women. But on the anniversary of her death -- and every day to come -- her name and the names of the countless other black women who have been killed should be remembered.
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If your 12-year-old son was playing in the park by himself with a toy gun and you saw video of a policeman shoot him and stand over him watching him die, and you spoke out against that injustice... what would you say if someone responded by saying All Lives Matter?
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Even if I don't have the minutest idea of what it means to navigate life as a black person, I pledge that I will always stand in solidarity with those who do. Not only will I open myself to listen to the voices of the community without moderating them, but I will also make my words my protest, my sit-in. And if I cannot help in the fight for justice and equality, I will never impede those who can, or those who fight for it, humanely.
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Black lives do matter, but not everything is black and white, and at the end of the day, after the dust settles and the smoke clears, after the bullets stop flying through the air and after the protest signs have been lowered, remembering that old adage might be what matters most of all.
The War may suffer a slow and prolonged demise, but the end will surely come. Canada can be a leader on these issues. It can steadfastly promote the winding down of the War. Our country should reclaim its position on the international stage, not as a nation of power, but one of humanity.
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Khogali wrote an op-ed in The Toronto Star on Sunday, breaking her silence on a story that's threatened to overshadow the Black Lives Matter protest. She responded to a tweet from February that resurfaced last week where she said, "Plz Allah give me strength not to cuss/kill these men and white folks out here today. Plz plz plz."
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Brandon was shot and killed not far from his hometown of Maniwaki, which has a population of about 4,000 people and is adjacent to the Anishinabeg (Algonquin) community of Kitigan Zibi, about 300 kilometres northwest of Montreal. His death went almost completely unnoticed in the media. Yet, a 17-year-old adolescent killed by the police in the context of a banal driving violation is newsworthy, particularly in light of the the fact that more than 50 people, most of whom were marginalized, have been killed in police operations in Quebec (and over 150 in Canada) since 2005.
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The reality is that in Toronto, as in most police services across the continent, the vast majority of serving police officers are exceptional public servants. The bad news is that reality is entirely irrelevant. People don't form judgments or base their decisions and actions on reality. They base them on their perceptions. And a fast-growing segment of society in Toronto, in Chicago, in New York City, in Ferguson, in cities and towns across North America, perceive their police services to be acting for their own benefit -- not society's.
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With the current trial of fired Oklahoma City police officer Daniel Holtzclaw, there is a marked difference in how this particular case of police brutality has been regarded, leading some to ask, "Does the world care about the victim when the victim is a black woman?"
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Recent police attacks on black women have been vicious, brutal and savage, often justified by police departments and arresting officers through the excuse that these black women were "angry" -- argumentative and sarcastic smart asses, talking back and full of attitude.
In the wake of Sandra Bland's death, artists Kalkidan Assefa and Allan Andre painted a mural in Ottawa in remembrance. Less than 48 hours after it was completed, the mural of Sandra Bland was defaced with "All Lives Matter." Make no mistake, this is an act of white supremacy. #AllLivesMatter is a mantra of white supremacy that ignores history, social relations, power, and, most of all, the lives of non-white people. #AllLivesMatter is a mantra of peaceful multiculturalism that proclaims equality in the face of disproportionate violence against black and indigenous peoples, in particular.
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Mandatory body cameras sound like a terrific answer to holding police accountable for their actions, but the reality is that these cameras will not save Black lives, nor will they even give victims of state-sanctioned violence the justice they and their families deserve.
There are too many of us who are randomly stopped by the police, questioned and ridiculed for no reason. Many of us lack an understanding of our basic human rights. But a new smartphone application, developed by a newly minted lawyer and activist, comes as a relief to many of us.
INKSTER, Mich. — More than 50 people have marched outside a Detroit-area police department to demand the firing of two white officers involved in the aggressive arrest of a black man who was pulled fr...