News & Politics

The Sean Bell Protests in the Papers: Peaceful and Orderly


When it comes to the Sean Bell trial, verdict and aftermath, the Daily News continues to place this story prominently in the paper, including a full-color photo of Al Sharpton and Nicole Paultre-Bell’s arrest at the Manhattan entrance to the Brooklyn Bridge and photos of other protestors and shooting victim Joseph Guzman on the bus that carried protestors away. The Post again trots out its cover from the initial incident and devotes 2/3 of page 7 to the events.

Both papers comment on the preparation the protestors were given from Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, which included a list of “dos and don’ts” that included “do have valid ID” and “don’t be on parole, have an open warrant or owe money to the city.” The Post gives a rundown in the sidebar, while News columnist Michael Daly provides a “slice-of-life” description of the protests outside police headquarters, referring to it as “the most civil of disobedience.”

The Post describes the scene as “although loud and raucous, the demonstrations were mostly peaceful,” and the News called the pray-ins “two hours of controlled fury.”

As he emerged from 1 Police Plaza after his arrest, Sharpton declared, “The Sean bell movement has been born.” We’ll see how that develops; Sharpton and the Bell family are set to meet privately with Gov. Paterson today.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on May 8, 2008


Archive Highlights