People’s Justice 2000 sponsored a rally last Wednesday afternoon to mark the 41st day after the Amadou Diallo trial verdict and the subsequent gunning down of four other men by police, and to announce the beginning of a spring offensive against police brutality. Close to 900 protesters—mostly young—gathered at Union Square. Students who participated in the citywide youth walkout registered sentiments on posters (“Abolish the NYPD”) and banners (such as one displayed by Manhattan’s Eastside Community High School calling on young people to “Fight Against Police Abuse”). Speakers filled the brisk spring air with poems, rhymes, chants, and angry commentary on the NYPD—”A gun and a badge don’t make you righteous!” Natalie D., 17, from nearby Washington Irving High School, said that she and two fellow students had come “just to see what was going on.” There are “probably good cops,” she said. “But their job sucks and they’re not good at it.” When the rally ended around 4:30 p.m., the crowd headed down Broadway to City Hall Park. Leading the noisy procession were members of the families of Anibal Carrasquillo Jr. and Anthony Rosario, two young men killed by police.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 11, 2000