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Announcement :: Education : Human Rights : Media : Organizing : Politics : Race : Social Welfare
Picket the courthouse for the Somerville 5
07 Aug 2005
PICKET AND PACK THE COURT:
Tuesday, August 9
9:00 AM
Cambidge District Court
40 Thorndike St.
PICKET AND PACK THE COURT:
Tuesday, August 9
9:00 AM
Cambidge District Court
40 Thorndike St.

STOP RACIAL PROFILING AND POLICE BRUTALITY! DROP THE RACIST CHARGES AGAINST THE "SOMERVILLE 5"

Every day, across the country, Black youth and other young people of color are the victims of racial profiling and police brutality. Skin color and national origin are seen by police as a cause for suspicion and a reason to violate people's rights. "Driving while Black" or "walking while Black" is the harsh reality for young people. Racial profiling can result in beatings, maiming, imprisonment and even death.

On April 20, 2005, five Black youths who attend Somerville High School (Calvin Belfon, Cassius Belfon, Earl Guerra, Isiah Anderson and Marquis Anderson) were the victims of racial profiling and a brutal, unprovoked attack by Medford Police. On that day the youths stopped at a Store 24 before planning to catch a bus home. Outside the store they were confronted by a heavily armed Medford police officer who grabbed Calvin Belfon by the throat and punched him twice in the face. Fearing serious bodily harm or worse, Belfon defended himself. His brothers and friends came to his aid. When Calvin appealed for the cop to stop, he responded by calling him a racist name. A police riot ensued with at least ten cops armed with guns, clubs, mace and flashlights, beating the five youths. All five young people sustained injuries to the face and head and all were maced. Calvin and Isiah were clubbed on their heads with a flashlight. All later went to the hospital for treatment. Police also gang-profiled the youths, asking them what their "street names" were.

A cover-up of this vicious assault by the Medford Police quickly followed. In orchestrated stories, police claimed that they were "fighting for their lives", "they were overwhelmed" and "the teens were trying to take their weapons". These are lies typically used by police to try and explain to the public their unprovoked, violent attacks on innocent people. Their strategy is to portray the victims as the perpetrators and themselves as the victims.

But we refuse to allow this racist frame-up to succeed. Family, friends, supporters, community groups, church members and students have packed the court rooms at all the pre-trial hearings. 300 Somerville High School students signed a petition demanding that all five youths be reinstated in school after the Superintendent of Schools Dr. Argenziano and Principal Galligani unjustly suspended them. Within one week, hundreds of people across the country and as far away as Belgium, phoned, faxed and emailed Argenziano's office demanding their reinstatement. Hundreds more have called the Medford Mayor's office demanding the charges be dropped immediately. Community groups held a successful press conference.

The futures of these young people, all good students and excellent athletes, is in jeopardy. The Medford Police and District Attorney Martha Coakley have closed ranks in order to cover up what is in fact police terror against youth of color. Bush and the Pentagon only offer our youths jail or war while they slash human services to feed the war machine. Let us join together and fight for what we ALL need: education, jobs, housing and healthcare.

Join us in demanding:
*Drop all charges now.
*Reinstate the students at SHS immediately.
*Conduct an independent investigation into police actions on 4/20/05
*Stop racial profiling and police brutality.
See also:
http://www.iacboston.org/
http://www.iacenter.org/

This work is in the public domain
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Re: Picket the courthouse for the Somerville 5
08 Aug 2005
Yes, picketing the courthouse will be very productive. Why?
1. It will show people that the 5 thugs are supported by people who don't work for a living.
2. You will likely get arrested and thrown in Jail.

GO FOR IT!!
What is my day job?
09 Aug 2005
I am sorry I did not make it to the picket line today, but I avoid court like I do work. (people are stressed out in both dimensions)
I am so sorry Sid, that people with jobs don't bother to do anything besides punch in and have their taxes buy factory-made bombs...
Attica, Attica!