Huge Multiracial Father's Day March Tells Bloomberg and NYPD, 'No More Stop-and-Frisk!'
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Malcolm is determined to prevent other families from experiencing her heartbreak. “This doesn’t just affect Ramarley. It affects all young black and Hispanic men. Ramarley’s gone, and I’m fighting for the others who are left here,” she told AlterNet. “This march goes to show that we can be united as one people to make changes, because the law has to change.”
Kenneth Chamberlain, Jr., whose 68-year-old father was killed by White Plains police in November, said he marched to show support for the Grahams. His father, Kenneth Chamberlain Sr. was a retired corrections officer and former Marine who had accidentally triggered his medical alert device. The police refused to leave his home after he told them he did not intend to call them.
“They took the door off the hinges, they fired a Taser at my father, shot him twice with a beanbag shot gun, and then fired a fatal shot in his chest and killed him,” Chamberlain, Jr. told AlterNet. “Today is the first Father's Day that my dad is not here, so it’s very hard for me, but I can’t think of anything I would rather be doing than to show honor to him. if I can stay focused, I won’t feel so sad,” said Chamberlain, a father himself. “Ending stop-and-frisk is the jumping-off point. You have to start somewhere, and it’s evident stop-and-frisk is racial profiling.”
Grassroots stop stop-and-frisk organizer Joe LaSalle told AlterNet that he is thrilled to spend Father’s Day with a different family, one united to end racism in the NYPD.
“I’m happy to be here with so many people that I don’t know, together as a family, on behalf of Ramarley Graham and Kenneth Chamberlain and other brothers and sisters killed by the NYPD,” LaSalle told AlterNet. “We’re tired of our kids being murdered by the NYPD, we’re tired of being stopped and frisked, and we want change to happen.”
LaSalle says he has been stopped hundreds of times. A father himself, his mission this Father’s Day was personal. “My 15-year-old son was stopped and frisked, and the police roughed him up a little bit, called him a 'mutt,' which, for Puerto Rican means a mixed breed, an animal. It was very humiliating. The funny thing is he wanted to become a police officer, and now, forget about it.”
Pictures by Sarah Seltzer:
Kristen Gwynne covers drugs at AlterNet. She graduated from New York University with a degree in journalism and psychology.