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Knowing Our

October 7 or
October 8

September 17-23

The Systematic Targeting of Black Men

Rudy Nickens1 led a Men and Allies gather-in for our Region.2 Rudy lives in St. Louis, Missouri (USA), and has been actively involved in the citizen protests against the killing of Michael Brown and the failure of the grand jury to bring the policeman who killed him to trial.3

He explained that most U.S. criminal cases that include any evidence at all are sent by grand juries to trial court. There, evidence and testimony, weighed by a jury, become public. However, police officers and armed federal officials (including from the Federal Bureau of Investigation [FBI], the Border Patrol, and the Drug Enforcement Administration) are rarely brought to trial, or convicted or punished. Over eighteen years FBI agents have shot about a hundred and fifty people, of whom nearly half have been killed. Eighty-five percent of the victims have been African-heritage or Latino men. The FBI resolves these cases itself, and only three times have the agents involved been tried and only once convicted—and instead of jail time the agent did community service while on parole.

Many police departments do not report police shootings, so the public may never hear about them.

Rudy told us that in the hundred years following the U.S. Civil War, a Black man was killed on average every three days. In recent years it’s jumped to every twenty-eight hours. These are sons, brothers, fathers, friends. They are human beings, every one of them precious.

Rudy did two beautiful demonstrations—one with a man on how much he loved another man, his friend, who was there in the room, and another with a young man of the global majority on how racism enraged him.

Jane Zones
San Francisco, California, USA
Reprinted from the RC e-mail
discussion list for leaders of women

1 Rudy Nickens is the Regional Reference Person for Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, and Iowa, USA.
2 A Region is a subdivision of the International RC Community, usually consisting of several Areas (local RC Communities).
3 On August 9, 2014, a white police officer shot and killed an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Missouri, USA. This led to many protests in Ferguson and around the country, against that killing as well as the ongoing police brutality directed at Black people. On November 24, 2014, a county grand jury decided not to indict the officer, which led to further protests


Last modified: 2022-12-25 10:17:04+00