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South Bronx Community Rallies to End "Stop and Frisk"

J. A. Myerson @ Truthout - Through the back of Jamel Mims' black leather baseball cap, a sprig of short, slender dreadlocks sticks out, looking like cooped-up children eager to see what's outside. What's outside today are 100 or so protesters in the South Bronx. Affixed to the right side of Jamel's hat is a button depicting a red line through the words "Stop and Frisk." Such is the name of the New York Police Department's (NYPD) policy of detaining on suspicion, whim or fancy, (and searching the person of) anyone at all. According to the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU), "more than 4 million innocent New Yorkers were subjected to police stops and street interrogations from 2004 through 2011." Predictably, "black and Latino communities continue to be the overwhelming target of these tactics. Nearly nine out of 10 stopped-and-frisked New Yorkers have been completely innocent, according to the NYPD's own reports."

"As we march up Third Ave.," Jamel tells the group assembled beneath the cloudy skies to protest the practices, "your job is to recruit everyone you see. You've been drafted. You ain't got no say-so." Jamel is a photographer, digital media artist and educator, who has been instrumental in organizing many of the Stop Stop and Frisk rallies in black and Latino majority neighborhoods around New York. Rallying the troops to march, he tells the crowd that we are here so that "no more generations of our youth will continue to be brutalized because of the way that they look. We're here to say, 'No more of this shit.'"  Read more.

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