1,000 signatures reached
To: Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O'Malley
DA O'Malley- It's Time To Drop the Charges Against the #BlackFriday14!
This campaign has ended.
District Attorney O'Malley, as someone who believes that Black Lives Matter, I strongly urge you to drop all charges against the #BlackFriday14, and end the discriminatory prosecution of the fourteen Black community activists who, on November 28, 2014, participated in civil disobedience at the West Oakland BART station as part of nationwide protests to demand dignity and respect for all Black lives.
In response to the non-indictment of Officer Darren Wilson and the ongoing war on Black lives, these 14 Black activists locked themselves together and blocked the BART train for several hours, disrupting economic business as usual. Instead of citing and releasing protestors, or charging them with the same minor infractions applied to the thousands of multiracial allies who had successfully blocked traffic, busses, and trains -- the District Attorney's office has filed criminal charges and attempted to extort restitution in the amount of $70,000-- a far harsher penalty.
This penalty represents the same discriminatory penal system that the Black Friday 14 were originally protesting against. DA Nancy O'Malley, you have already received tens of thousands of petitions calling for you to drop the charges. Now, even labor and faith leaders across the Bay Area have joined in that call. The time for you to drop the charges, and get on the right side of justice, is now. Drop the charges against the #BlackFriday14.
Why is this important?
The 2014 action was in solidarity with Ferguson’s national call for no business as usual on Black Friday, to draw attention to the countless cases of shooting deaths of unarmed Black men, women and children, and the failure to prosecute the police officers responsible. Hundreds of thousands of people participated.
“Every 28 hours a Black person is killed by a police officer, vigilante, or security guard.”
— Malcolm X Grassroots Movement Operation Ghetto Storm Report
The Movement for Black Lives has sparked a new upsurge in activism for racial justice, and the activists of the Black Lives Matter Network have been at the forefront of challenging the human rights violations and state violence against Black communities nationwide. They have engaged in courageous acts of civil disobedience in the tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Cesar Chavez, and the thousands of people who, throughout this nation’s history, have protested unjust laws and policies.
“While Dr. King and others were in fact jailed for their acts of civil disobedience, the prosecutors and sheriffs who jailed them were part and parcel of the racist power structure. Demanding incarceration and criminal convictions for the brave Black Friday 14, whose nonviolent direct action was in the greatest tradition of peaceful disruption to draw attention to injustice, is not the answer.“
— Attorney Eva Paterson and the Equal Justice Society
In case after case, we’ve seen prosecutors and grand juries fail to file charges against police who have shot and killed unarmed Black men, women and children. It is a national crisis of epidemic proportions - eleven year old Tamir Rice in Cleveland, John Crawford while shopping in a Walmart, Sandra Bland after a traffic stop in Texas, Eric Garner on the streets of Staten Island, Rekia Boyd killed by an off-duty Chicago police detective. The list goes on and on.
Closer to home, we can point to the killings of Oscar Grant by a BART policeman, Kayla Moore, a transgender Black woman murdered by Berkeley police; Yuvette Henderson, gunned down by Emeryville police; Alan Blueford killed by police in Oakland. This lists goes on and on too.
In general, District Attorneys across the U.S. have refused to hold police accountable for these murders. Alameda County DA Nancy O’Malley is no exception.
How it will be delivered
We will deliver the petitions in person, and likely stage a press conference.