And then a grand jury in Staten Island decided not to indict the police officer who killed Eric Garner, and things went topsy-turvy and nothing seemed quite so cheery anymore.
I've kept this blog largely separate from the daily slog of being a public defender in New York City: this has been a break from that, a space to cultivate lightness and light-heartedness. But this was too much and too close to home.
So there will be holiday snacks and festive treats and gingerbread houses, and a new post about our Santa Monica adventure with surprise pop star guests, but not now.
Now there is anger and grief and mourning and rage: for Michael Brown, for Eric Garner, for Akai Gurley, for Ramarley Graham, for countless others. For the lives they could have had. For the families they left behind. And for all the mothers and fathers of little black boys who hold them close and wish and pray and hope that they get to grow up without being hunted down by a country that doesn't love them.
Lives and families and communities have been shattered by neglect and violence and abuse and mistrust, but in this moment, we can start a revolution. In this moment, amidst all of the pain and the hurting, there can also be hope.
- Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams in the NY Times: We Must Stop Police Abuse of Black Men
- Ta'Nehisi Coates in The Atlantic: Barack Obama, Ferguson, and the Evidence of Things Unsaid
- Chase Madar in The Nation: Why It's Impossible to Indict a Cop
- Charles M. Blow in the NY Times: The Perfect-Victim Pitfall
- Photos from Gothamist of the thousands who stormed Manhattan in protest.
- #crimingwhilewhite (some of the best ones aggregated here)
- So proud of my union brothers and sisters who took the streets and bridges to demand justice and safety for our clients and communities.
Finally, if you haven't yet, get your hands on The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander. Every word is so, so true, and terrifying.
Stay safe, and stay strong.