On August 30th, around 4pm the Kensington Welfare Rights Union held an unpermitted march against the RNC (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH THE "STILL WE RISE MARCH"). The March was dubbed "The Poor People's March" by many, but was more appropriately named "The March for Our Lives: End the War at Home" by march organizers. The idea was that this march was to address the occupation of communities abroad AND at HOME. The unpermitted march was promptly met by police provocation. At least 7 times squads of 7-8 uniformed police officers violently entered the march and snatched an individual. All of those individuals snatched, were released within 8 to 12 ours of their arrest with no more than misdemeanor charges. In other words, none of those arrested in the snatches were being targeted FOR ANY SPECIFIC REASON. i.e. they were neither a threat to the public, nor a threat to the police nor had they been identified as the all too frightening TERRORISTS. These snatches were clear provocations by the police to break up the march, isolate those willing to defend those arbitrarly detained, and provoke violence from the crowd. The crowd however did not respond violently..... until around 8:30 pm, when plain clothes Detective William Sample, drove his moped directly into the march running over several protestors. The crowd responded and several people pulled detective Sample off his moped, and beat him unconcious. About 20 more arrests took place at this time. ALL OF THOSE ARRESTED WERE RELEASED WITHIN 50 HOURS OF THEIR ARREST, THE MAJORITY WITHIN 12 HOURS. None of those arrested were charged with felonies and no one was charged with the assault against Sample. On August 31st while the direct actions continued throughout the city, the local media repeatedly played footage of a young black man in a white t-shirt and ball cap kicking detective Sample on the street. 12-18 hours after the incident, an undercover NYPD officer picked up New York local JAMAL HOLIDAY, who was charged with the assault on Sample. Jamal was identified as the assailant because he was "still" wearing a white t-shirt and ball cap. Last I heard, Jamal's bail had been raised from $50k to $250k. Jamal spent his twentieth birthday in jail, and as far as anybody knows, he is still in. He is the only one still in. Here are my concerns.
The web site which was created to offer Jamal Support:
frequently has problems, and provides little information about updates or where to send money for Bail. If anyone has any information about this, please post a comment to this article.
If you search engine JAMAL HOLIDAY you come up with old news.... have people actually forgotten him, or dropped the ball...... I sure hope not.
I am concered that our movement may have encouraged Jamal to be on the streets the day he was picked up and accused of this assault (not that I would necessarily give us that much credit, but he may have felt "safer"), yet there was no jail solidarity for Jamal. People had to fly home and go back to school or work including myself. This is an issue which really exposes our priviledge as a movement, as well as our lack of responsability towards those communities, which are most affected by the repressive forces of the state. It seems that the criticisms are true about our movement... descending upon communities and creating a false sense of empowerment, than skipping town only to leave open wounds for buzzard police forces to further oppress these peoples.
We are lucky that the NLG has been representing Jamal, had it not been for them, we would have allowed him to fall throught the cracks.
If anyone know's what is going on with Jamal, has information about a bail fund please post it widely. We have just finished a film intended to raise money to this end , yet we don't know where to start.