By Marc Morial
President & CEO, National Urban League
On behalf of the National Urban League, I strongly condemn the recent killing of two New York City Police Department officers. The brutal shooting of Officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos in Brooklyn, N.Y. is heinous and reprehensible. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of both officers.
In Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.â€™s ever-relevant words, “If we do an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, we will be a blind and toothless nation.” Hate in speech and action threatens the very fabric of the United States of America and has no place here, particularly as we work toward peace and justice. We cannot fulfill our nation’s promise of justice for all if we continue to be driven by hatred and resentment. We must honor the legacies of Officers Liu and Ramos by maintaining our respect for police officials who day after day risk their lives for the sake of citizen peace and safety. We are eternally grateful for that immense sacrifice.
Last Saturdayâ€™s Justice for All march in our nationâ€™s capital was a powerful day of solidarity and a meaningful call for change. I walked away with a renewed sense of confidence in the purpose of our mission â€“ which is rooted in working together toward attaining justice, prosperity, and equality for all.
We were joined by an energetic group of National Urban League Young Professionals (NULYP), who came out in full force â€“ galvanized, ready to march and raising their voices. The Urban League Movement was well represented as affiliates from near and far supported the march and focused on advancing our 10-Point Plan for Police Reform and Accountability.
The march drew tens of thousands of people from diverse backgrounds, ages, races and identities, united by the common goal of justice. Among the sea of crowds were generations ranging from small, school-aged children to a 99-year-old lifetime advocate for social justice and civil rights.
The families of Eric Garner, Michael Brown, John Crawford, Tamir Rice, Amadou Diallo, Trayvon Martin, and so many others witnessed this massive outpouring of support for the sons, husbands, and fathers they lost and the many others who are named and unnamed to the public. It is clear that many Americans have been deeply impacted by the pain and heartache of these families, and on Saturday, we were honored to join them in taking the next step â€“ transforming that pain into unified action.
Our work continues long past this weekend, and as Iâ€™ve previously stated, a movement cannot be sustained without concrete objectives and goals. Join us in doing the hard work for the long haul â€“ learn more about our 10-Point Justice Plan!