OCTOBER 2002

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Imminent Public Protest Against Police Brutality
From Singtao Daily
September 15, 2002

Although the public at large regards blue-uniformed officers with respect and trust, it is hard to ignore the issue of police brutality.

Yesterday, a group named the "October 22nd Coalition" announced its intention to demonstrate on October 22nd, the "National Day of Protest." It is offering the public an opportunity to take part in protesting against the continuing tide of police brutality.

Ms. Cheng, a member of the October 22nd Coalition, remarked that more 2,000 people have died as a result of police brutality since 1990, 36 of whom died after 9/11. This figure is important to her and the Coalition. In spite of the great courage with which the city’s police department responded to the terrorist attacks last September, one must not overlook the fact that police brutality is still a reality.

Cheng added that this violence is characterized by a degree of racial discrimination. According to their statistics, these cases disproportionately affect the Black, Latino, Asian, and Middle-Eastern communities, and given recent media revelations, they represent just the tip of the iceberg.

The group has just put out a book entitled "The Faces of Stolen Lives," documenting the lives of those who have died unjustly at police hands since 1990 with pictures and case summaries, among whom are two Chinese-Americans.

Yongxin Huang, an honor student from Brooklyn, was killed by police on July 24, 1995. Kuang Chung Kao, a Taiwanese man from San Francisco, April 29, 1997, was celebrating a job promotion in a bar when he became the target of racially-motivated slurs. Drunk and angry, he was waving a broomstick at his neighbors for help just when police arrived.

Although Kao’s wife removed the broomstick from his grasp, the officers ordered her to step backwards and fired a shot into her husband’s chest. Kao was still alive, but the police prevented his wife, a registered nurse, from administering to his wound and, thus, he lost his life. After the incident, the police department claimed that Kao still had the broomstick in his hands when he was shot.

Cheng said that the October 22nd Coalition culled its figures from various media sources and from reports filed by victims’ families. The group maintains websites at http://www.october22.org and http://www.geocities.com/oct22ny, where members of the public may seek out relevant information, record their thoughts, and discuss unfair incidents that they have experienced. The upcoming demonstration is especially significant because post 9/11, the public has had nothing but praise for the officers. Nevertheless, people should be concerned about police brutality, which may encroach upon their personal well-being. The number of individuals affected by this issue grows and the suffering continues.

The Association hopes that the upcoming demonstration will afford the public a chance to join the ranks of those opposed to police brutality and who wish to curb further incidents. The protest is scheduled to start at 4:00 p.m. in Union Square on October 12th. A gathering will take place at 6:00 p.m. at City Hall. Preparations for the event are still underway [therefore the times and locations are tentative].

Translated From Chinese By Kelvin Wu

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