For Immediate Release
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167
Anger in Streets of Baltimore
WASHINGTON - JAISAL NOOR, jaisal at therealnews.com, @jaisalnoor
Noor is a host, producer, and reporter for Baltimore-based Real News Network and largely grew up in Baltimore. His most recent report is “Anger in Streets of Baltimore as Mistrial Declared in Freddie Gray Case.” He has covered the trial extensively. See his prior report, “Media Hypes Potential Unrest as Jury Says It’s Deadlocked in Freddie Gray Case,” which featured legal analyst Douglas Colbert who stresses that it was a hung jury, not an acquittal. Today, Noor is covering the “trial of 18-year-old Allen Bullock who broke a police car window during the Baltimore uprisings. Having turned himself in, he faces life in prison and a bail that is higher than those set for the six police officers charged in the killing of Freddie Gray.”
LAWRENCE GRANDPRE, lawrence.grandpre at gmail.com, @LBSBaltimore
Grandpre is director of research for Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle, a Baltimore-based grassroots think-tank which “advances the public policy interest of Black people in Baltimore through: youth leadership development, political advocacy, and autonomous intellectual innovation.”
Grandpre said today: “There is a misconception about the situation in Baltimore. Corporate media will cut to shots of young black bodies chanting in the streets, multiple layers of law enforcement ‘staging’ through out the city, and create the perception of ‘a city on the brink.’
“There are multiple layers of law enforcement incentives, from increased overtime, to easier access to funding for equipment (including riot gear), for law enforcement to produce a large show of force. That serves both to intimidate folks in the community, a so-called ‘deterrent’ which is designed to create a climate where police messages about being targets are seen as axiomatically true. In reality, the only targeting we’ve seen is the baseless detention of protesters in front of the Baltimore courthouse Wednesday afternoon.
“Grassroots activists are mobilizing peaceful protest in support of a social justice agenda rarely talked about. There are multiple coalitions staging legislative campaigns to change the law enforcement officers’ bill of rights, which provides police additional protections from public oversight and investigation which creates both a chilling effect on reporting police abuses and prevents accountability. Those marching and mobilizing are doing so for justice for Freddie Gray and systemic change in Baltimore and Maryland, increased investment in indigenous institutions in aggrieved communities, and a comprehensive vision of social justice which is effaced when the public narrative centers on the possible destruction of property and not systemic destruction of black and brown life.”
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