I am Oscar Grant

From Gilbert Mercier:
On Friday, former police officer, Johannes Mehserle, who killed unarmed passenger Oscar Grant on New Years day 2009 was sentenced by Judge Perry in Los Angeles. The police brutality occurred in Oakland, but the trial was moved to Los Angeles to avoid a repeat of the protests following the killing of Oscar Grant. Judge Perry sentenced Mehserle to just two years, ruling it was “involuntary manslaughter”. The LA judge is also taking off 146 days for time served, and another 146 days for “good behavior”. That is almost one year taking off the already minimal sentencing of two years. Without the leniency of judge Perry, Mehserle could have faced 14 years in jail.

...The case of the shooting of Oscar Grant is not isolated at all, and police brutality has been apart of African-Americans and Latinos daily life for a very long time. A documentary filmmaker, and Pacifica radio host, JR Valrey is arguing that we are facing an epidemic of police brutality to the extent that Valrey qualifies it as “police terrorism”. In his film, “Operation Small Axe”, Valrey focus on the shooting and killing of Oscar Grant and the protests following the tragic incident.

“Police brutality is definitely not ‘isolated incidents’ as official always say after each new killing or beating by police. When we screened ‘Operation Small Axe’ in Atlanta, people were still talking about the police murder of 92-year old Kathryn Johnson in 2006,” said Valrey.

Recent data released by the National Police Misconduct Statistic and Reporting Project, which started keeping track of police brutality since 2009, 2,541 cases of police misconduct nationwide took place between January and June 2010. Further, police misconduct caused 124 deaths in the first six months of 2010 with 60 percent of the killings resulting from police gunfire. Additionally, during the same six months period, police brutality’s price tag for the taxpayer was around $150 million in police misconduct settlements or judgements paid out.

Valrey argues that police brutality unifies Blacks and Latinos across the country, and the activist journalist calls brutality committed by law enforcements officers “police terrorism”.

“People in the minority communities know that this police terrorism is happening. Latinos and Blacks usually don’t agree on religion or politics, but they agree that police terrorism is an unnecessary evil in our communities,” Valrey said. It is as if America’s law and order apparatus, at least in the case of Blacks and Latinos, has flipped the “presumption of innocence until proven guilty” by a presumption of guilt until proven innocent.
Now, in case you fine folks have forgotten....


  1. How was he a threat, when he was on his knees and handcuffed?! I smell bullshit and racism.

  2. I smell bullshit and racism.

    Staples of the American justice system.

  3. 2 years...and the people who defend this sentence are equally full of it

  4. Such bullshit. Just goes to show how messed up the system is. You can kill someone on VIDEO and STILL get treated with kiddie gloves.

  5. America really does have a law enforcement problem. Cops are flat-out despised here in WV. Everyone has a series of anecdotes. Women getting beaten and having to call 911 six or seven times before they get help. Cops responding hours after someone reports an assault. Cars getting stolen and parked across town while cops don't do shit to get them back. Money getting stolen on video and cops asking clients, "Can't you just ask her to give it back? It's an awful lot of legwork for us."

    Or my favorite...the city mission being held up at gunpoint with the police station right across the street - literally - and the police don't show up until 3 hours later. The whole sitch was caught on video; cops did not pursue.

    But they love dragging young men off the road and hurling them to the ground while surrounding them with dogs - that they do. Every day, in this very small town, I see white boys on the concrete or in cuffs while the cops rip through an empty car.

    Even little kids here hate cops; I say "police" and every child I've ever worked with looks at me as though I've uttered blasphemy. A little boy once stopped in the middle of playing to tell me ominously, "Cops aren't friendly."

    America has a serious law enforcement problem, and it might want to look that quickly.

  6. Hey Ank did you here about Aime Michael? The young woman from Atlanta that did a hit and run, claiming 5 lives?

    Here are some links



    **Also, sorry for any confusion my name is causing...sometimes it appears as "Zaire" other times as "Y"

  7. America really does have a law enforcement problem. Cops are flat-out despised here in WV. Everyone has a series of anecdotes.

    Amen. Once, at 18, I was arrested with a class A misdemeanor-- fingerprinted/mugshotted and everything-- for having my 16 year old friend in the car with me (I was taking him home) six minutes after curfew. His mom came into the station to explain that I knew the kid from fucking Sunday School and that it was okay that he was with me, but the douchebag still wanted to see me prosecuted. Fortunately the DA dropped it because it was utterly frivolous.

    This example isn't really a big deal because I was fine and I was technically breaking a law (unlike your examples, which are remarkably and unambiguously not fine,) but the experience made it so palpable and obvious that these positions are available and attractive to assholes who love power games. Only people who have never had to deal with the police directly (in ways OTHER than calling in noise complaints) try to pull the "he was just trying to do his job" shit.

  8. Only people who have never had to deal with the police directly (in ways OTHER than calling in noise complaints) try to pull the "he was just trying to do his job" shit.

    Yeah...didn't realize "murder with immunity" was in the job description. And folks like these? They go home and sleep like babies.

    Sick, isn't it?


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