AZ Black Lives Matter Ferguson Rides
Organized by: Anay Bickham
On August 28th, the “Black Life Matters Ride” an initiative of #BlackLivesMatter will bring Black folks from across the country into Ferguson, Missouri, as part of a national call to end state violence against Black people.
The “Black Life Matters Ride” is a call to action, a slogan under which Black people can unite to end state sanctioned violence both in Ferguson, but also across the United States of America. In addition, it aims to end the insidious and widespread assault on Black life that pervades every stage of law enforcement interactions; be it in custody or in our communities.
While Black people make up a mere 13% of the US population we make up more than a third of those killed in officer involved shootings across the country. We know that anti-black racism in the form of vigilante violence is most often informed by law enforcement violence. As a national call to action, the “Black Life Matters Ride” is unifying Black people under the following demands:
1. Justice for the family of Michael Brown and all other victims of law enforcement and vigilante violence.
2. The development of a national policy specifically aimed at redressing the systemic pattern of anti-black law enforcement violence in the US.
3. De-militarization of Law Enforcement - we are demanding that the federal government discontinue its supply of military weaponry and equipment to local law enforcement. Furthermore, law enforcement agencies across the country should liquidate their current military resources, immediately.
4. Release the names of all officers involved in murdering Black people both on patrol, but also inside custody from the last 5 years onward.
5. Decrease law enforcement spending/budget by ½ by 2016, and invest that money into Black communities most devastated by poverty in order to create jobs, housing, and schools.
-We will arrive in Ferguson on Saturday, August 30th, 2014, and we will leave on Monday, September 1st. While there we will fulfill the following agenda:
•Thursday- Friday: Riders travel from destinations to Ferguson.
NATIONAL WEEKEND of ACTION!
• Saturday: Solidarity march and/or local community engagement efforts coordinated with local community members.
•: Sunday: Establish next steps and key action items in the #Blacklivesmatter movement. Riders return to destinations- equipped to continue the fight inside of their local networks.
We hope these rides will become a standard practice towards greater solidarity inside of the Black community!