How Can We Get Justice For Alton Sterling And Philando Castile? [Video]

Though many celebrities have actively voiced their outrage and distress, it is unclear what action is appropriate in such dire times.

Warning: Graphic videos included below.

37-year-old Alton Sterling was shot and killed by Louisiana police after a confrontation in Baton Rouge on July 5. Released mobile footage shows Sterling being shot in the chest point-blank. A second video showed cops removing a gun from Sterling’s pocket.

This attack elicited concern from many voices across the country, including that of musical icon Beyonce. She shared the following call to action on her website on July 7,, having already added both Sterling and Castile’s names to the long list of victims displayed on a screen during her tour.

“We are sick and tired of the killings of young men and women in our communities.

It is up to us to take a stand and demand that they “stop killing us.”

We don’t need sympathy. We need everyone to respect our lives.

We’re going to stand up as a community and fight against anyone who believes that murder or any violent action by those who are sworn to protect us should consistently go unpunished.

These robberies of lives make us feel helpless and hopeless but we have to believe that we are fighting for the rights of the next generation, for the next young men and women who believe in good.

This is a human fight. No matter your race, gender or sexual orientation. This is a fight for anyone who feels marginalized, who is struggling for freedom and human rights.

This is not a plea to all police officers but toward any human being who fails to value life. The war on people of color and all minorities needs to be over.

Fear is not an excuse. Hate will not win.

We all have the power to channel our anger and frustration into action. We must use our voices to contact the politicians and legislators in our districts and demand social and judicial changes.

While we pray for the families of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, we will also pray for an end to this plague of injustice in our communities.”

He posted the following letter on Instagram as a response to the killing.

“I am grateful to be able to call America my second home. Last night when I saw the video of Alton Sterling being killed it left me feeling disheartened, emotional and truly scared. I woke up this morning with a strong need to say something.

It’s impossible to ignore that the relationship between black and brown communities and law enforcement remains as strained as it was decades ago. No one begins their life as a hashtag. Yet the trend of being reduced to one continues.

This is real and I’m concerned. Concerned for the safety of my family, my friends and any human being that could fall victim to this pattern. I do not know the answer. But I believe things can change for the better. Open and honest dialogue is the first step.

My thoughts and prayers are with the Sterling family and any family that has lost someone to this cycle of violence.

Be safe out there. More life.”

Unfortunately, Sterling is not the only recent victim of police brutality. Philando Castile was pulled over in Falcon Heights, Minnesota on July 6 for a traffic stop. He was shot to death with his girlfriend, Diamond Reynolds, and daughter in the car. His girlfriend recorded this video below on Facebook live.

Hip Hop artist Drake posted the following letter on Instagram as a response to the killing.

“I am grateful to be able to call America my second home. Last night when I saw the video of Alton Sterling being killed it left me feeling disheartened, emotional and truly scared. I woke up this morning with a strong need to say something.

It’s impossible to ignore that the relationship between black and brown communities and law enforcement remains as strained as it was decades ago. No one begins their life as a hashtag. Yet the trend of being reduced to one continues.

This is real and I’m concerned. Concerned for the safety of my family, my friends and any human being that could fall victim to this pattern. I do not know the answer. But I believe things can change for the better. Open and honest dialogue is the first step.

My thoughts and prayers are with the Sterling family and any family that has lost someone to this cycle of violence.

Be safe out there. More life.”

 

In addition to these heart-wrenching letters, many celebrities expressed their dismay and despair on twitter.

Twitter 1 Twitter 2 Twitter 3 Twitter 4 Twitter 5 Twitter 6 Twitter 7 Twitter 8

As if the nation weren’t reeling already, some are calling the sniper ambush on Dallas police officers on July 7 the deadliest attack on U.S. law enforcement since September 11th 2001. In downtown Dallas, five officers were killed at a peaceful protest about officer-involved shootings.

11 officers were shot, and the gunmen are still at large. Police Chief David Brown released a statement, saying, “We believe that these suspects were positioning themselves to triangulate on our officers and planned to injure and kill as many law enforcement officers as they could.”

This violent attack can be viewed as nothing less than a response to the rising number of black lives taken without a second thought. The black and pro-Black Lives Matter community is in shambles, distressed by these recent events but also the mounting uncertainty about what action can be taken.

The insensitive disregard for black lives is appalling. Responding violently is far from a reasonable act of recourse, as violence inevitably begets more violence. People are hurt, people, are scared, but most of all people don’t know what to do, when so many seem unaffected by the mounting body counts.

The burden of black loss and police recklessness is on all of our shoulders. That said, so many fervent questions remain: what do we do now? What happens next, and how do we begin to heal and demand reparations?

Photo source.



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1 Comment
  1. […] year, we learned America is the scariest free country for some, and the safest for others. It’s the scariest for […]

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