Reading Branch NAACP Press Release
Reading Branch NAACP Statement on the Fatal Shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile and the Five Law Enforcement Officers in Dallas
July 11, 2016 - Our thoughts and prayers are extended to the families of Mr. Alton Sterling, Baton Rouge, LA and Mr. Philando Castile, Falcon Heights, Minn and the 5 Law Enforcement Officers in Dallas, TX the senseless and tragic loss of their lives last week.
It’s a shame but it would seem the loss of their lives is the surge that was needed to burst open the flood gates on the rising death toll killings of African American men, women and children in our nation. The system (out dated and unfavorable laws, special interests groups and politicians) has allowed the deaths of Eric Garner, Michael Ferguson, Laquan Mc Donald, Sandra Bland, and young Tamir Rice to be used as stacked sandbags to hide and cover up a failing, broken law enforcement system. For many years these systems have eroded and destroyed at the very core lives, families and peace communities.
Now is the time for us to come together as a nation and within our respective communities to sit down to have on-going conversations with honest open dialogue regarding race relations if we are to begin our transformation to respect and value others if we are to live and work harmoniously together. To do so we must be willing to bottle up our feelings of anger, suppress hostility and anguish before entering the room for the discussion.
As a branch we are planning to host a Town Hall Meeting inviting concerned residents from the community, local public officials and law enforcement agencies to discuss and address areas which may be of concern (racial profiling, on-going sensitivity training, descalation of situations and the use of excessive force and accountability for actions) in our community. Resulting in laws and practices best suited for all.
Change will only come when we get involved and make our voices heard, we must register to vote! It is only then, should we expect change to occur. By electing representatives who are willing to work in a bipartisan manner with one another to solve and resolve matters that are in the best interest of the people they represent. They must stay in touch with their constituents to know what it is the people want. They are public servants and the seats that they hold should no longer be viewed as life-long employment opportunities nor should they pander to special interest groups. Their terms in office have 2 and 4 year limits. They should count the opportunity to hold these positions as a privilege. For many have become far too complacent in what is they should be doing and tend to forget about the people/ communities they actually represent.
Even if it is means having to remind them on occasion of the words found in the Preamble - "We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America"