August 13, 2014 at 5:01 pm EST | by Staff reports
LGBT groups respond to police shooting
Ferguson, Missouri, gay news, Washington Blade

Ferguson, Mo. (Photo by Paul Sableman; courtesy Creative Commons)

FERGUSON, Mo. — A group of LGBT advocacy organizations on Aug. 12 expressed their support for the family of a black Missouri teenager who was fatally shot by a white police officer.

The National Black Justice Coalition, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, the American Civil Liberties Union and the National Center for Transgender Equality are among the groups that signed onto the letter in response to Michael Brown’s death in a predominantly black St. Louis suburb on Aug. 8.

“The lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community cannot be silent at this moment, because LGBT people come from all races, creeds, faiths and backgrounds and because all movements of equality are deeply connected,” the letter reads. “We are all part of the fabric of this nation and the promise of liberty and justice for all is yet to be fulfilled.”

Reports indicate Brown was unarmed when an officer with the Ferguson Police Department fatally shot him.

The shooting has sparked widespread protests in the city.

Local authorities have arrested dozens of people in connection with setting stores on fire, vandalism and even assaulting reporters as the Associated Press reported.

The AP reported the officer, whose identity has not been released, has been placed on paid administrative leave.

The FBI and the St. Louis County Police Department continue to investigate the incident.

“The LGBT community stands with the family of Michael Brown, who was gunned down in Ferguson, Missouri,” reads the statement from the LGBT advocacy groups. “We stand with the mothers and fathers of young black men and women who fear for the safety of their children each time they leave their homes.”

  • brians ions

    It should go without saying that this civil rights homicide by a Ferguson police officer should be thoroughly investigated and prosecuted by USDOJ. That includes every aspect of what appears to be a coverup by the Ferguson PD and its police chief.
     
    Longer term, community civil rights groups have to drill-down deeper. Solidarity sloganeering is not enough. All civil rights groups should try to better understand both the art and science of local policing– especially Community Policing.
     
    Community Policing is the method by which local police departments are able to partner, proactively with the communities they are supposed to serve and protect. Sustained Community Policing can never be effectively achieved with a police force too small to accomplish that mission.
     
    Local governments and politicians are penny wise and pound foolish to blindly accept the short-term, blue smoke-and-mirrors promises of overpaid police ‘experts’ or chiefs who claim ‘smarter’ tactics and strategy can achieve crime reduction with a sustainable level of peaceful, cooperative community/police interaction.
     
    When our civil rights organizations and news media understand that, they will not be so quick to accept the excuses of high-ranking police officials and/or mayors and council members. Then real change can occur.

    • Rick Mangus

      ” Civil Rights Homicide “, what an ignorant statement.

      • brians ions

        Huh? Don’t you really mean, “ignorant reference”??? If so, I am happy to make it more clear for you, Rick.
         
        I was using a bit of rhetorical shorthand for the federal crime of *violation of civil rights under color of authority* (or ‘law’ as U.S. Code Title 18, Section 232 calls it).

        As USDOJ explains 18 U.S. Code § 242 on their website…
        **
        Section 242 of Title 18 makes it a crime for a person acting under color of any law to willfully deprive a person of a right or privilege protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States.
         
        For the purpose of Section 242, acts under “color of law” include acts not only done by federal, state, or local officials within the their lawful authority, but also acts done beyond the bounds of that official’s lawful authority, if the acts are done while the official is purporting to or pretending to act in the performance of his/her official duties. Persons acting under color of law within the meaning of this statute include police officers, prisons guards and other law enforcement officials, as well as judges, care providers in public health facilities, and others who are acting as public officials. It is not necessary that the crime be motivated by animus toward the race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin of the victim.
         
        The offense is punishable by a range of imprisonment up to a life term, or the death penalty, depending upon the circumstances of the crime, and the resulting injury, if any.
        **
         
        Taking note of your subsequent comment (below), Rick…
         
        In addition to 18 U.S. Code § 242, you might also try reading the Constitution of the United States.
         
        There you will find it is well within the rights of all Americans — whether ‘self proclaimed LGBT groups’ or not — to criticize their government(s) on any issue, even those being investigated by a grand jury or juries.
         
        Accordingly, what happens in Ferguson, can very much be the “business” of any concerned American.

  • Rick Mangus

    It’s none of our business what happen in Ferguson, because it’s a investigation that has just started to be investigated by a grand jury and these self proclaimed LGBT groups need to mind there own business with there ignorant jump to judgement’s, like the team members did at the Redskins game on Monday night.

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