NYC Commemorates the 3rd Anniversary of Eric Garner’s Death While Activists Still Call for Justice

Art for Amnesty via Twitter
Art for Amnesty via Twitter

Today, July 17, marks the third anniversary of the death of Eric Garner, the Staten Island, N.Y., husband and father who was killed by New York City police—his last words the refrain, “I can’t breathe,” invigorating a nascent Black Lives Matter movement and driving thousands into the streets to protest.

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Many took to social media Monday to remember Garner and to call for indictments against the police officers who ended his life.

The New York Daily News reports that Mayor Bill de Blasio used the day to speak about the “progress” the city has made in police-community relations, as did Police Commissioner James O’Neill.

However, Garner’s daughter, activist Erica Garner, who is known not to take too kindly to meaningless platitudes, says that there is still no justice in her father’s case and that progress is not coming fast enough.

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“What progress?” she tweeted, in response to the mayor’s words. “Training is not progress. It is a BASIC COMPONENT OF THE JOB. You mean people stopped marching about it. No progress!”

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After video of Eric Garner’s last breaths emerged, Officer Daniel Pantaleo, who was captured on video holding him in a choke hold, was not indicted in December 2014.

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U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions took over the federal civil rights probe launched months after Garner’s July 2014 death, and the News reports that the Garner family met with federal officials last month, but so far, there has been no movement on that front.

In New York City, there will be a 7 p.m. protest to renew calls for charges against the cops involved in Garner’s death, including Pantaleo, at the Staten Island Ferry Terminal, just blocks away from where Garner lost his life.

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There will also be a commemorative service in Harlem, also at 7 p.m., featuring the Rev. Al Sharpton, at the First Corinthian Baptist Church.

Below is a tweet of a poem for Eric Garner:

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Read more at the New York Daily News.

Ms. Bronner Helm is the Senior Editorial Director at Colorlines. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.

DISCUSSION

mikealphonso
Mike Alphonso

To everyone saying he didn’t resist, you’re wrong. He did not cooperate with the officers and even started walking away while detained. They were forced to either subdue him, or just let him walk away. The guy who killed people didn’t try walking away or anything else that would make them feel out-of-control of the situation.

Now in this case, the officer that choked him may have used excessive force, and should be punished, but that doesn’t mean they subdued him because he was black. They subdued him because he was too cool to follow police orders. You always get subdued for that.