Loy Norrix Students Protest Police Brutality Against Young Black Males

Ferguson picture1

Loy Norrix students protest the murder of young, African American males. They reenact the death of Mike Brown by lying on the ground as if dead for 4 1/2 minutes. Photo Credit / Caitlin Commissaris

Walking into the Loy Norrix cafeteria on the morning of December 4th was not like any other this year. There was a group of thirty to forty students lying motionless on the ground, wearing the face of the dead. They remained silent for exactly four and a half minutes to symbolize the four and a half hours that Mike Brown was left dead on the streets of Ferguson, Missouri. At the end of the “Die-In” students started to chant, “Hands up, don’t shoot!”

This protest is referred to as a Die-In, in which the participants basically lay on the ground as if dead. This protest was planned to coincide with nation-wide protests following the killing of Eric Garner.

Garner was a resident of New York; he was illegally selling cigarettes on the street corner and did not stop when police asked him to. Backup was called in and Garner was put in a chokehold. He kept repeating, “I can’t breathe.” Garner was then taken to the hospital where he first fell into acoma and then passed away.

“I hope people will begin to realize that racism is still a huge issue. I encourage students to actually look into the details behind these killings because the media does not provide all of the information,” said senior Gabe Wikle, who helped plan the Die-In.

Racial profiling seems to be a huge issue in today’s society.

“I’m actually really surprised at how many people participated in the die-in because I got the idea last night at 10 p.m., so I didn’t think it would be as successful as it was,” said Wikle.

It is an amazing moment when students come together to speak out against what they believe is unjust.

9 responses to “Loy Norrix Students Protest Police Brutality Against Young Black Males

  1. Interesting, I wonder if these same students have protested the violence coming from their own nieghborhoods, change starts with you… hold yourself and peers accountable for their actions and police may not have to do it for you as often.

    Jevin Weyenberg – class of 1998

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am the proud parent of a Loy Norrox graduate from over a decade ago, and I can assure you that these kids do indeed start at home and live the change they want to see in their worlds. Many of those same people from my daughter’s graduating class are still active today in their community giving people non-violent ways to communicate, express, and educate via the theatrical stage. They didn’t tolerate victim blaming and violence and hate then, and they don’t tolerate it now.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. having someone who was committing a crime, and then fleeing being killed isn’t hurting our society..how about we protest the wrongful deaths of children in drunk driving accidents?

    Like

  3. Kalamazoo Crime Data Crime Data FAQ

    CRIME INDEX

    8

    (100 is safest) Safer than 8% of
    the cities
    in the US.

    Kalamazoo Annual Crimes

    VIOLENT 661

    PROPERTY 3,247

    TOTAL 3,908

    annual crimes per 1,000 residents

    8.84

    43.41

    52.25

    I would say the data suggests they need to practice what they preach, clean up your own closet before you tell someone else to clean up theirs.

    Like

  4. I would like to point out that you have stated garner was in a choke-hold. This is incorrect, the officer put Garner in a headlock. There are differences, as well as a choke-hold is illegal to be used by an NYPD officer by their own department bylaws. however I’m in no way justifying the action just correcting the fact stated.

    Like

    • I commend the students for taking action. Whether a choke-hold or a headlock, Mr. Garner repeated numerous times that he couldn’t breathe. With no signs of resisting the officer responsible as well as being surrounded by others, the outcome was the same, “DEATH” as a result of the officer’s treatment of him. All of the playing on words, and negative comments brought in to convolute the fact that this man (not even bringing in his race though a glaring issue) who posed no threat to armed officers, was forcibly taken down on the street, in public, was restrained, handcuffed (behind his back), leaving him immobile and at the mercy of someone who’s job was to “Protect & Serve,” was deprived of oxygen due to the pressure and positioning of that which was inflicted upon him resulting in his death. This man was not in the act of committing, fleeing from or accompanying anyone engaging in a crime. It was “alleged” he was selling loose cigarettes. In a country where one is supposed to be innocent until proven guilty, where was his justice? What justice was rendered while the officer responsible for his death was not even brought to trial. His life was cut short, his family left with dealing with the aftermath of what many of us will never understand and hopefully will not have to experience. At this time, the very value of a Black mans life in America is being seen throughout the world as insignificant and less than that of an animal. “An injustice anywhere, is a threat to justice EVERYWHERE” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I think it’s awesome that students that young are learning how to make a change and protest peacefully. I just wish they’d do some research first. I can’t say much about the other alleged victims, but as a former Kalamazoo resident living in the Ferguson area I can say that what happened there was an issue of criminality, and the only people making it about race are the protestors and the media.

    Liked by 1 person

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