ADC Statement on Shooting of Michael Brown
Washington, DC | www.adc.org | August 15, 2014 – The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) stands with Ferguson’s peaceful protesters as they make a strong statement on the right side of history. ADC is appalled by the senseless and racially-charged murders of African-Americans by police forces, most notably that of Michael Brown, and the heightened police brutality against African-Americans in Missouri as a result of their exercise of free speech and protest.
On Saturday August 9, 2014, 18-year-old Michael Brown was unarmed when he was shot dead by Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson a day before he was to begin college. Although Michael Brown’s hands were raised in surrender, the police officer shot Michael Brown not once, not twice, but several times. Then, as residents took to the streets in protest of his murder, militarized police units from throughout St. Louis County occupied Ferguson, using rubber bullets, noxious gas, and LRAD sonic weapons on American civilians. The St. Louis County police units have also targeted journalists on the scene, attacking and arresting both protesters and journalists.
On Thursday, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon finally ordered the St. Louis County Police Department out of Ferguson and called in the Missouri Highway Patrol to handle the crowd control in Ferguson. According to the New York Times, the armored vehicles and militarized police units are now gone . ADC commends Governor Nixon for recognizing the inappropriate actions of the St. Louis County Police Department and taking action to defuse the situation.
Police brutality and targeting of minority groups is a pervasive problem in the United States. It is a race issue, and a civil rights issue. Not only does ADC stand with Ferguson’s peaceful protesters and civil rights activists because of the mutual targeting of the Arab-American community, but most importantly because no American citizen deserves to be targeted, harassed, or killed by police forces and have their rights violated by the same people whose job is to protect them.
ADC is pleased that the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) is investigating Michael Brown’s shooting but calls on the FBI to also conduct a thorough investigation of the Ferguson Police Department for racial profiling. ADC demands disciplinary action to be taken against Officer Wilson and the Ferguson Police Department.
It is time for all communities to come together and demand steps to be taken in our police forces so that no person of color in America with his or her hands up in the air will ever suffer such an atrocity again.
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