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USRESIST NEWS stands in support of those protesting against racial injustice and police brutality in America. The murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officers is what set off the current wave of protests. But Floyd’s murder is only the most recent example of a decades long history of police violence directed at black Americans. As the protestors so clearly point out it is time for this to stop.

We endorse the suggestions of Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden to ban the use of chokeholds and  “weapons of war” by police, and establish a National Police Oversight Board with the ability to investigate police brutality . We need each and every police department in the country to undertake a comprehensive review of their hiring, their training, their de-escalation,” Biden said in recent remarks in Philadelphia..

Biden’s suggestions are excellent but there is little chance  they will be implemented as long as President Trump is in the White House. However former President Barack Obama pointed out in a recent article in Medium that the elected officials who matter most in reforming police departments and the criminal justice system work at the state and local levels. It is there that action needs to be taken  to ensure prosecution of police misconduct. That is something we can go to work on immediately. We need to ignore the President’s attempt to hijack this moment as a law and order issue.

Media coverage of the protests has unfortunately often highlighted the violent actions of a few political extremists and those who have used the protests as an opportunity to vandalize property. These people need to be arrested and criminally charged if appropriate.

But the overwhelming number of people in the streets of US cities have been peaceful protestors.  They have come out  to protest in the midst of a public health pandemic, because they feel that, no matter what the circumstances,  the murder and  mistreatment of black Americans by the police needs to stop now.

And A Note to Our Fellow Protestors:  The ability to peacefully protest a government law, regulation or unjust action is enshrined in the 1st Amendment to our Constitution. No one can take that right away from us.  Our friends at the American Civil Liberties Union offer a handy detailed guide to our rights as a protestor or a protest organizer. Here is a link:

https://www.aclu.org/know-your-rights/protesters-rights/

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