tv Justice for All March CSPAN December 13, 2014 12:12pm-3:31pm EST
i can't breathe. ♪ [indiscernible] this is what democracy looks like. show me what democracy looks like. >> this is what democracy looks like. >> show me what democracy looks like. >> this is what democracy looks like. >> show me what democracy looks like. what we want? >> justice. >> when do we want it? >> now.
>> hands out. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands out. >> don't shoot. >> i can't breathe. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice.
>> we can't breathe. >> we can't breathe. >> no justice. no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace. hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace.
that want to try to suggest there is a division among us. that this is young versus old. white versus black. when my son walks out of the house, i pray every day he will come home. color he is.what all human life is sacred. let us gather for purpose. let me tell the people in the media something now. there's a lot of pain on the streets. where there is pain there is a purpose. we are here for purpose. we are going to be here together. this is intergenerational.
some are older with a few gray hairs and we are proud of the young people who are standing up and speaking up. let them hear you. .ou are the john lewis you are the people who started this. it is you who are targeted. you have a right to stand up. hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> i can't breathe. >> i can't breathe. >> lead us all grab each other's hands in unity. every single hand. every single hand. i don't care if you have a phd or no d.
grab somebody's hand. all there is a funeral, we now our heads and hold hands. we praise our god, or whoever we want to. hold your hand. every hand should be held. i'm going to bring forth for prayer the chairman of the board of directors of the national action network. chairman richardson. we have gathered here today because we believe in the value of all human life. we gather here today, because we know we have to move from protest to problem-solving. home and takeback
unity issues, and bring to our community so we can transform behavior. and transform expectation. together in our diversity. join together and our multiple faith expressions. . went to ask you to join me whatever your spiritual grounding is, i want us to focus on our spiritual center. on the thing that gets us through the night. the thing that holds us when everything lets us go. the thing that gives us hope when despair is all about us. let us pray. mother and our father . we thank you to the legacy of struggle that we embrace in this hour. .e confess our pain
we confess our frustrations. we confess we have to come back .ere time in and time out generation after generation seeking justice. we are tired, but we won't give up. god, asking you to bless these families. these families who have gathered around. they are hurt and have lost children. they are pain is inflicted by insensitivity. god, for this nation that is on its way to catastrophe unless we turn around and come together and speak hope to each other. voicenk you for our clear in this difficult time.
just his voice but the multiple voices a minute and women all over this country. the voices of the young people, the voices of our children. we thank you, god, for the voices being heard. we thank you for those who put their feet on the pavement. who walk through the streets. who, by our presence, demonstrates there is an unsettling spirit in our midst. you drive out the things that would destroy us. drive out the violence in government hands. in theut the violence hands of our brothers and sisters. crime willon black not continue to be. drive out the frustration that leads us to turn on each other. drive out police officers who act without accountability.
government officials and corporate leaders who are on sensitive to our pain and struggle. then open the window of hope so we can believe in tomorrow. how about, believe in tomorrow. not to be encumbered by today. we love you. make us whole. we are broken. make us whole. amen. >> amen. [applause] while you still have your hands as far back as i can see. grab the hands of your neighbor. hold your hands up. everyone get your hands up. this is interesting. the cameras are still focused here. they should be focused out there. look at the hands.
black, white, brown, asian. there they are. nobody is doing nothing wrong. everybody is doing everything right. that is right. make you look today. congress may be on vacation, but we will never take a vacation until we get what is right. , a youngd gentlemen man from howard university is now mayor of newark, new jersey. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> i can't breathe. >> i can't breathe.
>> i can't breathe. >> i can't breathe. >> we said i can't breathe not just because eric garner lost his life senselessly in the streets of new york from a needless chokehold. we say i can't breathe, because we are being suffocated diocese to of jim crow justice in -- suffocated by a disease of jim crow justice in america. that allows the murder of trayvon martin to go free. we say we can't breathe because we are tired of jim crow justice in america. we are out here today to say we will fight back. we will stand up. 1911 miss nelson and her son
in 1911. a bridge they say we have come far in america, i say not far enough. 1955 a man was murdered and dragged from his home to a tallahassee river. they say we have come far in america, i say not far enough. crow is dead jim in america. dead inic garner is america. that mike brown is dead in america. peoples no justice for of color and poor people in this country. until there is justice for all, there will be justice for none. ,nywhere there is injustice there is injustice everywhere in this country where we are. finally, wey, that
are not just out here because we want police reform. we're not out here because we want the police to wear cameras. although, we think that will help. we are not out here because we think the police >>we are out here because there is a systematic and consistent effort to dehumanize and criminalize people of color in this country -- that has been going on for decades in america. are out here because we want the police department, but we need reform in congress. we need reform. until america realizes that they need to invest in every
citizen in this country, it will always be a problem. this country will never have peace. will never have rest. will never have justice. god bless you. keep up the struggle. keep hope alive. keep pushing. keep fighting. >> you know, there were 400 people who came here from ferguson, missouri. 400 folks came from ferguson, missouri. hands up. ladies and gentlemen, i'm going to allow -- we want you to understand, everybody will have a voice. this is not what outside to would do, or whoever would do. you have to ask the question, what will you do about it.
my next speaker, a young man, what williams from ferguson, missouri, decided that he would do something. 400 people decided that they would do something. round of ua williams a applause. are you doing? how are you doing? i came all the way to washington, d.c. to show you love and support. i support you. you support us. the reason we came up. it's because we are being tired of being shut down in the streets. the police have a thing called the trigger finger. the use the trigger finger when they see a black person in the street.
when we walked down the street, our shoulders because the police officers coming. wally going to store, there's no reason we should be followed by police officer because we're black. we should be able to be black in america and be free. we're going to stand up to these police officers. we're going to tell, we're going to plan and to police brutality. your one stop killing our kids. for five days for protesting in the street. i was out of jail, and back in the police's face. the next time i get out of jail, i will read be right back in your face. the next time i get beat, and get out of the hospital, i will be right back in your face. was beaten too.
with the chief, but she started marching, other offices marched in, and i would -- i would beat on the ground. after i went to the hospital, i out there -- k in their face.t, stage people you see on right here -- this is my protest family. i have a pretty big family. you to do -- put your hands in the air. put your hands in the air. that is the sign of surrender. not know that.
young d, they took a man's life. the shock that man. that next day, he was going to be in college. earning his education. he did not understand that he took leslie son away from her. now she has to spend the holidays without her son. they do not understand how hard it is to have a son taken away with a bullet. we need to tell them to stop doing the stuff. we all want a life. we all want to live. kids l want to see our grow up and have an education. we want to make it. okay? back to rget us, we go ferguson. come to ferguson, protest with
is 395 -- shut down 14th st. -- and is shutting down everything all night. i would tell you why we are out your shutting down the street. this is not an issue police brutality tonight. a human right issue. michael brown's human rights were violated when he was shot in the street. to a d not get the rights trial. trayvon martin, he did not get to be judged. we're here fighting human rights tonight. it is not black against white tonight. against the system. it is us against white supremacy. if you make the mistake of or ling this civil rights, calling the simply an issue of police brutality, the system will win. what we're doing right now is exactly what the system doesn't
to see -- black faces, white faces, asian faces, hispanic faces here together today. they do not want to see us unite. race is nothing but a social construct that has been invented to divide us -- today, throw race ll -- we aside and we look at one another as humans. do not say: fist up, fight in washington, d.c.. fist up >> fight back. >> we tried that way. we tried to be nonviolent.
in the d to door hands air and say, we surrender. but nothing can stop the genocide of black and brown people here in america. can stop it. say: fists up, fight back! >> then she looked at me and said, sorry. that's all right. also you like the attorney general says, i'm not mad at her. she has a lot to say. young folks. on the program. president of the howard university student association
to say hello. hands up. >> don't shoot. >> in the 3 1/2 years that i've been in howard university we've davis, trayvon y martin, eric garner, michael brown. we marched, we protested, we and we got the role guilty verdicts. all that said, the system is working for the people and to work for. that's not how the story ends. the people you see protesting and ferguson have been protesting for 127 days straight. the people protesting in new york will not let this story and. we're here in dc, to say this is not how the story ends.
if they thought this would be how the story would end, america has to wake up. this is our time. this is our fight. this is our chance to tell america that we are tired of police getting away with murder. in america, a black man is 17 times more likely to be killed than a white man. department of he justice, a black man is killed by white officer twice per week. i'm not appear because i'm an activist. this is because personal. who's not to or too class, to realize that this could then my parents crying over me being in the grave.
honestly, i could care less about the media. i could care less about the press. for this event to not become an annual event. what i've come to realize is that america is really a living, breathing contradiction. that wrote, country "all men are created equal". the same country that concentration camps here put japanese into internment camps in california. we don't like to talk about it, but it happened. now, people have been and issioned to protect us, served us, but are harassing us and killing us. contradiction is as american as apple pie.
black people's task has always narrow the disparity. the question now becomes, what is next? what are we going to do about it? real community policing. not talking about cultural sensitivity classes. about, the dude you played basketball on the court, community policing. into ed programs that go high schools and give the kids that e officers -- community policing -- there's no other way to do it than from the ople community to become the least.
we also need accountability for the police officers that are acting with impunity. i believe the president should expand the department of include a division specifically dealing with police misconduct resulting in death. that something he can do on his own. you don't have to wait for congress. there are things that we can legislate. barista, we cannot legislate and le's assumptions stereotypes. we need a cultural shift. i leave you with a quote, "no give you freedom. knowing to give you justice, equality, or anything. take it."an, you malcolm x.. >> the next speaker is the
national youth director of the national action network, all the way from atlanta, georgia. >> hello, everybody. how are you? first, let me say, can everyone give yourselves a round of in this cold. dr. martin luther king jr. once said that a justice anywhere is a justice everywhere. we are tied in a single garment of destiny. what affects us directly, and all that indirectly. america, it is this in mind that i go the cries of our young people. wake up, america. our young people are dying in the hands of those sworn to protect us. when i look out into the crowd,
i'm proud to see different genders, ferent different affiliations, and different organizations. it will take all of us working together to make the change. i want to thank every up fighting tanding against atrocities. it is called stop and new york city, assume the position in chicago, or up in oakland -- w the police make it very clear, we are the police and you have no rights in the society. we know the police are our first encounter with the judicial system that is destroying black and brown trees in this country. must hold america and this country accountable. so, what will we do? we need to use our $1 trillion buying power and support communities. this country today, and every day, until we see change -- we
make you uncomfortable. because, african-american people in this country have been uncomfortable for too long. so, we will march. we will protest. we will rally. we will come back to this capital as many times as we have to -- because, enough is enough. so, what do we come to dc to do? to tell come to dc congress that hearings on misconduct and brutality should lead towards legislation. to tell e come to dc congress to do their job. you so much. no justice! >> no peace! >> thank you so much. >> i made a mistake.
i said congress was on not all , but that's congress. some folks decided they were going to stay. from f them is congressman houston, texas. and gentlemen, the congressman. start by complementing and commending this march. when a person takes the initiative to something for others that person ought to be recognized. i asked you do now recognize and show some love to the honorable al sharpton -- the leader, the man of courage, can be in this march today.
let's hear it for him. there are those who question why we are here. we are here for the same reasons that the pilgrims came to plymouth rock. we're here for the same reason that people through tea into boston harbor. we're here for the same reason got on tractors and brought the complaints to congress. we're here for the same reason that rosa parks took a seat on a bus in a racist town. we're here for the same reason selma r. king march from to montgomery. are here because we refuse to accept injustice. that is why we are here. i want you to know that we, in
congressional he black caucus have heard your cries. the duties that elected us when we are to congress. take up legislation to way g about change in the policing takes place in this country. have bobby scott, who has just gotten a piece of legislation through congress that will again required the at the hands data of the police. we want to make sure that congress gives an annual report to black s happening people in america.
that's not enough. we also have legislation which will require body cameras on police officers we oss the country, because understand that even though by do not make all that much of a difference, it will make a difference what we can see what happens to people like eric garner. without the ccamera, eric garner would be michael brown. there will be questions about what happened. -- but that's not enough. will give it justice department additional authority so that it can investigate every one of these questionable shootings. the federal it to government so that we can get a greater degree of transparency. but that's not enough.
finally, it is going to take to young ke me saying people, we're not here to lead in , we're not here to be your way, we're here to get out of your way to the you can movement that started before we all came to the podium. i want you to know that the congressional black caucus will do its part. you that we will take up the legislation that you to us -- regardless of who you are, or who you are from. has to eve this movement continue. it started before i was born, and we wanted to end before i die. god bless you. >> for those of you that think the next speaker only
a tv show en he got called "politics nation." let me give you a brief he's a cal sketch -- preacher. when called upon, he answers. you answered. ladies and gentlemen, the reverend al sharpton. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot.
>> alright. we are here today because we have this nation deal with the facts that just like 50 ago, the state has taken position to rob the human rights of civil citizens. laws disempowered federal laws. we saw in ferguson, missouri where stead an island state grand juries suspended the process of due process.
we've come to washington to call on this congress and the national government to do what was done before. need national legislation to state grand jury's that says police have the right to choke people, even on video, and you won't bring them to court. to ask ll right prosecutors, have private queries, and if we question them, we are starting trouble. we did not shoot anybody. we do not choke anybody. we do not come to washington as shooters and chokers, we can't and the choke you to deal with american citizens who cannot breathe in their own communities.
look at the thousands of people. they are black, they're white, they are gone, their old. this is what america looks like. in the city and was i saw a black man put his hand on the bible and become president. i've also been cited today when i see young white kids holding up signs saying,, black lives matter. i know the media won't show that. i know they will say, we really had 500 people. but, i do not care how much you to destroy the truth.
the people united will never be defeated. you can castigate the leaders. you can try to divide us by generations. do not understand, my younger daughter gave me the of the day, and said, you didn't y us, but you were burying seeds -- when you bury us, we sprout up, and we start blocking traffic. seeds grow into disobedience, nonviolence. our seeds will sprout up and last longer. this congress -- we're here for three things.
one, we need a law on judicial threshold. why is the threshold so high to protect citizens and police matters? police are aying all bad. we are not even think that most are bad. we are not anti-police. but, we're anti-brutality. and the federal government must have a threshold to protect that. second, the justice department must have a division wanted to deal with this. third, we must have the power special prosecutors -- not tthe local prosecutors. we cannot trust those. they depend on each other every have a non-conflicted
inquiry of each other. they say, you don't speak for get, what we march, thousands come. this is about the victims. we do not all agree with each other. we don't all have the same tactics. but, we have the same goal. that is equal protection under the law. that is not black against white -- it is right against wrong. that's why the whites and here together -- show the world today that this is not a black marks, or white an american is march for the rights of american people.
there are those that want to act as though what we say is unreasonable. unreasonable about asking for a court case? what is unreasonable about asking for due process? what is unreasonable about for the constitution to work for everybody? unreasonable about and ngthat michael brown tamir rice, and eric garner had rights too? what a lot of people do not is that just like policemen have the right to get unions to defend them, victims have the right to get civil and human rights
organizations to stand behind them. you thought it would be kept quiet. -- thought you could slid sweep it under the rug. we will keep the spotlight on michael brown, on eric garner, on tamir rice. the only way you make brooches the is you have to put light on. [cheering] i don't not have -- have the words the others may have. have the promise that civil rights leaders before me had. i do not have the understanding
of law that some of my brothers and sisters have. be like me, you may you come up the rough side of the mountain. and when you come up the rough side, sometimes your legs get a arted -- and there might be -- mud on your coat. but, i came to washington anyway. god gave me a little like, and i'm going to shine. i'm going to shine on michael brown. i'm going to shine on eric garner. god gave me my lights. and i'm going to shine. let it shine. let it shine. stage ant to bring to the know it's cold, but god bless you for being here in the cold.
i want the families together a brief word, and then we will let the other speakers speak. this is not a revival. we will not be here all night. our message.ring the family speek, i want the families to move off the stage of weight, but we can all figure. with the old way, we would've -- mmy old weight, we would've already been down. i want to thank all of you. glad to see my own boy, who's around the world, the legendary filmmaker spike in the house. daughter to is march.
do the right thing. the right thing. thank george gresham. all the o thank partners that made this possible. i want t of all, are ress to know that we serious -- we organize the thousands in eight days. it was just wednesday before jury came e grand back. us go home, and organize three weeks on you -- and over e back over again. congress, beware.
>> hey. washington. thank you. well, what a sea of people. if they not see this and make a change, i don't know what we have to do. thank you for having my back. [cheering] >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. with the mother of eric garner.
good afternoon, everyone. all so overwhelming to see of you who have come to stand with us today. i mean, look at the masses. races, aall , all religions. this is just a great moment. this is a history making moment. >> that's right. >> you know, we need systemic this at all times. know, our son -- they may here in body, but they are here with us in each and every one of you. you brought them here today. i thank you.
i thank you so much. without you, we would have an empty podium. we just love you so much. reverend al said, we will as it ere as many times takes. we will come here over and over again. but next time, we do not want -- you know, we want to come for celebration -- not an assassination. >> that's right. -- thank all of you. you are helping our voices be heard. go home today, we hope that they have heard our voices. to our command. because, no justice.
no peace. thank you, eeverybody. >> the wife of eric garner. >> hello, everybody. thanks to each and every one of you for coming. my husband was a quiet man, but he is making a lot of noise right now. his voice will be heard. i have five children in this world. for e all fighting everybody. not just for him. for everybody's future, for everybody's past, and for everybody's present. hear in unison: i can't breathe.
my breath away. >> i can't breathe. >> i want to thank everybody who has supported us. you know, my father -- he was a great man. the way that the media betrayed him to be -- he was not that man. he was a family man. he did anything for his family. he loves his kids. he did anything for his kids. that all want to say. thank you for the support. and, i can't breathe. >> amen. >> i can't breathe. >> the mother of tamir rice. she has come from cleveland. the autopsy was
released. the wanted to stand with people today. >> good afternoon. we are all family here, right? i just want to thank everybody for coming out. for all of your support. across this nation, we will get justice for children. believe that. like "weather now" sharpton said, the autopsy came out -- so, -- the autopsy came out.
my son's death was ruled as a homicide, like everyone should know. that being said, let the officer get arrested, and in front of a -- criminal jury -- so get the opportunity to prove his innocence. and we can prove our justice. my son was 12 years old. he was just a baby. a baby. my baby. the youngest out of four. he is here with me right now. i want to thank the nation, and the world for their support. up t's only way i'm standing right now. the only way.
[cheering] who doesn't ybody know, i'm a mother -- i keep my from toy guns, wwater bb guns -- because, boys of all color, they like those types of things. they like those types of things. and, you know -- 12 years old -- had a promising future. a promising future. bless this nation, all the families, we share the same pain. across the world that have had police shooting for the sons. hands up, don't shoot. i can't breathe.
murdered in as august in walmart. walmart. where most of america spends the money. even myself at one time, but that is no more. am here today to support the rest of the family's in the fall of shame. i'm here today to let everyone my son's name. i worked under the system often 20 years -- under the criminal justice umbrella. never before have i been so ashamed. the same system under which
i carry out my duties, is the same system that i'm saving an justice from -- the same system that we are receiving injustice from. i would like to let everyone know to please stay focused. don't forget the name john crawford the third. don't forget the name walmart. associate the name with the place. he was not killed at a department store. was not killed on the street. he was killed at the biggest retailer in the world. we do not get one condolence. was under no obligation to not release the footage, but did they do so? no. a i'm sorry?d
no they did not. on you walmart. but i tell you, please stay focused. on is simply, we have prosecutors who are not prosecutors. we have prosecutors who are not prosecutors. most of which, me, are called closed cases. the attorney general can handle most of these cases. please, stay focused. need for you to continue to apply pressure where pressure is needed.
what we have people in office doing the job -- that is the biggest injustices that we can have. agenda u do not have an in congress -- it's almost from the inside that works the way to the outside. when you do not have bound on the inside, you will not have balance on outside. so we need more people -- we need more people -- we need a community within congress to make things happen. i'm going to close it by stayi -- saying that we thank you. my son's name. >> how are you doing?
brother of taril junior. a lot of you may not know who he is. they shot my brother 21 times hands up -- standing over him with 18 of those bullets. since the day he died, i have been determined to get his story out there. aand my k my mama, daddy down. i'm going to keep on fighting. with these o fight families -- all the families -- justice for him. i want you to remember his name.
i want justice for my baby and for my partner. with the down here baby to stand up in the nation's capital for him. them a hand. kimberly. >> i think everyone for the support. we really appreciate it. he was killed for no reason, walking down the stairs. all i really need right now is justice. how to explain to the two-year-old that daddy is not coming home. for akail ed "justice gurley, i'm calling for justice for others as well. >> keep the spirit alive.
united we stand. >> united we fall. >> alright. of have this man that many you saw -- he pull it into a and south carolina, and for no reason a state trooper shot him, and he said why did you shoot me? today with shington up, don't : hands shoot. hands up. >> don't shoot. >> hands up. >> don't shoot. family taught us -- to the one who endures until the end.
you are i hope listening. i hope you are watching. it seemed like we were in a race to get somewhere. we were -- we are in a race to get to justice. no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> the officer in this case was terminated. the officer in this case was charged. the officer in this case was arrested. we're waiting for justice -- for grand jury indictment. >> thank you. i would like to thank everybody for coming out, and putting themselves into something bigger than themselves. on september 4, my life changed.
god showed me that there is a reason for me to be here. not just as a black man, but as a human being. all of you, when you leave here, don't let it end here. black see the hands of men here that whenever they get pulled over by the police they automatically get nervous? no, no, no. many of white or caucasian supporters out here get nervous by n they are pulled over police officers? okay. right now, we know what the problem is here. we know the problem is. we are being targeted. okay.
the only way we're going to get somewhere is if we work together -- and if we don't stop. as soon as you stop it is that. it is dead.you stop, that every day that i'm here. i think god every day that i'm here. in this movement. i believe there will be change -- from ca coast-to-coast, all 50 states, even in alaska. right now, this is our team. we have to work together and stay in touch. we have to communicate with each other. if you meet someone out here, exchange cards, figure out how to make this work.
when you come to south carolina, i would like to see every phase out here, so we can lift her hands when we get a conviction. we're going to stay active. i would like to thank everybody for being here. for your support. dead, 9, young man shot 41 bullets, in the bronx, new york. his mother came and stood for him. she is still standing for him and others. [applause] >> no justice -- >> no peace >.
>> what do we want? >> justice. we have been there so many times. it has been 16 years. reverend sharpton, thank you for your leadership. you have been fighting all your life for righteousness and justice. you fought for my son, you , you fought for for -- the fought list goes on. why are we here today? let me tell you something. know in 2000 when the white officers were acquitted of killing my son of all charges, i thought the world was ending.
conversation that we began in this country. i want to lift this one up and show the world. magazine.of time what did we say then? cops, brutality and race. later, we ares standing still and demanding the same thing. just think about that for a moment. think about all these young children who were taken away from us. my son's wallet looked like a gun. out toan bell went celebrate the best time of his life, his wedding, he looked
suspicious. bullets shot at my son, sean bell, 50 bullets. i went to the hospital to see of that brutality and violence from police guns. i cried. nobody can imagine the trauma. man,n't seeing this young for no reason, being gunned down and he came out of it. my son and never lived through that. support theay to families. and thebrown's family young man killed in brooklyn.
in the end, we all have to ask the same question. why do our sense look suspicious? -- sons look suspicious? why are they stereotyped and portrayed? why? news, you see something else. trayvon martin went out to get something to drink. in the news, it's something else. time and time again, we are going through the same history. relive my tragedy every time. as long as i have my body, i will not fail my son. fightise him i'm going to for him and speak for him because he is no longer there to speak for himself.
this is something we demand. here. the price to be [indiscernible] that itbrown, i'm sorry had to end like this. this is not the end because of the sea of people who said we need justice. we cannot close the book. we have to carry on until justice for all, equal justice for all the victims. despite where you are coming from.
leslie work bell or gwen, we are all here. please do not forget us. these do not forget that our sons died. we can open up conversation around the nation so that we can start building communities, community relations and finally, when that happens, when we have some laws, good cops policing our neighborhoods, then we can heal because we want to heal. we need healing, america. thank you. god bless you. [applause] >> we are going to hear from our partners in leadership. we must hear from the mother who
has symbolized the challenge of our time. the mother of trayvon martin. sabrina fulton. [applause] you! love >> first of all, i love you guys, too. ,rom my family to your family from all of these families mean the worlds to us. if we don't know how to express it all the time, we can touch you all the time and take pictures all the time, just know that our hearts and minds are with you. we have a few things to talk about. thing, this guy here to my
left. , where wouldpton we be without him? [applause] it.le don't quite get they don't quite understand. they want to talk about we are not together. look around. look around. take a look around. we are together. we are united. we are standing and we are going to fight this fight, together. me to my heart to know that so many men are getting away with shooting and killing our young people. and not being held accountable for it. by us beingbelieve
here together and united that god sits high and looks low and the light is absolutely shining on what's going on. this is not something new that just started. this is something that has been happening. something that has been going on. it is just that some folks just woke up. some folks just woke up and realized, hey, this race of people is being treated a little differently. we want to make sure we not only are talking to ourselves and our own groups and organizations, theye have to make sure understand what we are going through. don't preach to the choir.
tell -- they know. i don't have to tell one single african-american about racial profiling because you guys know. what i challenge you to do is talk to somebody that does not know. talk to somebody and make somebody else knowledgeable and make somebody else aware and educate somebody else about what you are going through. as long as we stay to ourselves, we are going to stay in our own circle. we have to get out of the circle and make positive change. is,last thing i want to say don't just come to the rally and then go home. the numbers look nice and look good. you guys are good out there. we are very proud. but it cannot stop your.
-- stop here. i want to challenge you to commit ourselves with a nonprofit organization, somebody that has purpose. -- aning that organization that supports the same ideas that you have and the same goals you have. we will fight this together. god bless you all. thank you. [applause] >> sabrina fulton. give her a hand. [applause] think the families as they step down. usant to thank those hosting at our request. thank the families as they stepped out.
[no audio] >> hands up. >> don't you. >> no justice. >> no peace. i joined a national action network after the march in staten island. i go every sunday and monday to the house of justice to figure out what i can do to make the policing better in our communities. -- ie come up with a list came up with a few pointers i want to outline so that we can work together to get these policies enforced. public protests are important because we all have to come out and get our voices heard.
if we don't make our voices heard, they won't listen. we have to make them listen. we have to go out there and , peacefully.her today was so peaceful, i cried the whole way from down pennsylvania avenue to write here. all the love and support being given. how to respectn each other and learn how to speak to each other. if you don't know somebody and they are going through something, give them a hug and say we are with you. if you need me, i'm here. tell a young person you don't have to write and loop. -- riot and . riot and loot. hands up. >> don't you.
>> i can't breathe. i can't breathe. i can't breathe. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> thank you, everyone, for coming out and supporting me. we are near the end of our speakers. , theve judge greg mathis naacp, the urban league. cuddle up and warm up and we will get it right. ladies and gentlemen, to the podium now, melanie campbell, president of the national coalition on black civic participation.
>> no justice. >> no peace. >> i can't breathe. >> i can't breathe. we can breathe. >> we can't breathe. >> black lives matter. >> black lives matter. >> all lives matter. >> all lives matter. >> i want to thank reverend sharpton for his lifetime commitment. you have been there for the the victims of police brutality for decades. i will age myself, but i can remember back in the 1990's, you were there for the family of philip from inglewood, new jersey. you have always been there for our communities. when the cameras were off, more
times than when the cameras were are our go to guy. you fight to the end and we love you. repeat after me. sharpton!u, reverend today, we can look behind and see the congress. see that white building back there? --are here today we are here to be in solidarity. we need congress to do their job. president obama, eric holder, they are doing their jobs. they can't do it alone. and andcongress to act police brutality and excessive force.
police brutality and excessive force. pastor and brother spoke earlier. thank you. i love you. you that we tell have to call the unite states of america in 20 state of repentance. what does the lord require of you but to do justly and to love mercy and walk humbly with your god? , notve to call this nation just to talk just as, but to do justice. not just to do justice. -- not just to ask justice, to do just this. this nation will do justice this. we cannot stop until justice
rolls. no justice. >> no peace. >> we are rolling on. the head ofelcome the national urban league, my main man, mark morreale. >> no justice. >> no peace. sharpton to thank al and the entire community. and also think the labor organizations, civil rights ,rganizations, the young people a big round of applause to young people who stood up. [applause] whereay has been a day some will ask, why do we march?
we march because of trayvon r, michaelic garne brown, tamir rice, john crawford, lavar jones. we also march today for the many people not named today. who have been victims of police violence across the nation. because it is our right as americans. we march today because we are united, black and white and brown and asian. we are united, young and old. we are united to say it is time for change. we want justice and we want it now.
, the death of ago -- the bombing of the four girls in birmingham. the death of goodman. up theirple who gave tomers to register people vote in mississippi. unlike in the conscience of a nation. awaken thein the conscience of a nation. that movement not down the walls of segregation. -- knocked down the walls of segregation. i'm outraged by the grand jury decision in ferguson and staten island. by theen more outraged
prosecutors. cannot why this movement be a movement without objective. i want to just share with you -- 10tion steps for action steps for police reform and accountability that each of you must bring back to you or local community and we will it.cate ofor we want widespread use of body cameras and dashboard cameras in every police department in this nation. theant an end to implementation of 21st century community policing. deadly forceform
policy that is transparent and understood by all police departments across the nation. we want all police officers to be comprehensively retrained to learn how community policing should work to develop relationships between police and the communities they serve. special prosecutors to be appointed to investigate police misconduct. locallationship between police and local prosecutors is too close for them to always be fair and impartial. a want the fbi to create clear and transparent reporting system. incidents.force and we want a national database of citizens complaints against
the police. we also want a national police .ccreditation system for those departments that don't meet this accreditation, they are ineligible to receive federal dollars. that meetss congress to pass a national comprehensive anti-racial profiling law. no one based on race, color, creed, religion, national origin or gender should be profiled by the police. rally and stand with the families. brothers and sisters and ladies and gentlemen, we come today because today is not an end, but a new beginning. the new beginning of a movement
for justice in this nation. no justice. >> no peace. >> hands up. >> don't you. >> the new president and ceo of the naacp. >> no justice. >> no peace. >> no justice. >> no peace. , we leftle while ago marching toward polished marbles of the u.s. capitol. along this route, little over one mile, we marched together.
white, catholic and asian, we, latino and marched together. we the people marched together. we marched together a little over one mile because the distance between these two points is a measure of our determination. a measure of our commitment, -- result our result because we believe all lives matter. every child matters. every citizen matters. all of our children matter. [applause] have been asked a question. why march? why us? because when we see our
out day in and day we march because when you have one out of every four african-american young men being mistreated at the hands of the police in any given month, we march. we march when young african-american men are 21 times more likely to lose their lives at the hands of the police, we march. we march because we believe in our children, we care for our children and we will protect our children. [applause] march?, why do we
brown to theichael hometown of the governor, 134 miles across missouri, we march. we march because all of our children matter. again. yet march when you ask, why do you march, the words of a civil rights leader who said we will march until hell freezes over. and when it does, we will march on the ice. [applause] so i pose the question, why us? some say it is not your children
being profiled, not your .hildren born suspect but i simply say to you come if you have ever held a child in your arms, if you have ever held a baby in your arms, you know is notild's name democrat or republican. by theld is not called name of the urban league or naacp. that child's name is owned by god. every child matters. we march together because we care about our children. when i came to the naacp, my asngest son was the same age emmett when he was killed. my oldest son was 17 years of
age, the same age as trayvon martin when he was killed. i march because of my children. we march because of our children. we stand together because of our children. afternoon,o you this as we march, let us be mindful of that great freedom. lift every voice and sing. ring with a harmony of liberty, let our rejoicing rise. as there-sound loud roaring sea. let us march on, let us march on, let us march on until victory is won every child and
every citizen and every person that is a member of this republic. let us march for our children. [applause] up theing to now bring legal arm of this demonstration. three of the baddest folks that ever worked the bar. first off, you know him as the judge, judge greg mathis. [applause] reverend sharpton, the andlies of our fallen boys you will here today, i want to comment on what justice looks like or what it should look like. justice should look like federal intervention with federal and state legislation amending the laws on secret grand jury's.
we want grand jury's to be open and transparent. justce should look like look at using the police say that we have gathered around the country. we want justice to look like the police in our communities hugging us, touching us and loving us. to love us is to be a part of us. we want justice to look like choosing employment and education for our black youth rather than mass incarceration for our black youth. theant justice to look like stopping of guns and drugs being dubbed in our community by young people to kill themselves with. and finally, we want justice to
look like you, like me, like he, like she, like them, like they. we want justice to look like all of us so that we can get equal protection under the law. god bless. stay strong. we love you. [applause] show said ion the wish johnny cochran was alive. well, he is not. crump is the attorney of our generation. martin brown, trayvon and their new client, tamir rice. the attorney of our generation.
attorney crump and attorney parks. [applause] whenothers and sisters, killed, wetin was said that was bad, but what was worse was when our criminal profiledystem trayvon martin. now, we come to michael brown in ferguson, missouri and they profiled us all. they used tear gas and rubber bullets on grandmothers. didn't they profile us all because the people who came out for the killer of an unarmed
teenager, they called them supporters and when you won't came out for the black teenager ling that on the ground, they called us protesters. they got police protection. when we came out for michael brown, we got police enforcement. , as i stand sisters ,or all these great lawyers they demonize our children. they profiled the trayvon and demonized trayvon, 17 years old. then, michael brown. they profiled, they demonize michael brown, 18 years old. now, brothers and sisters, we
come to tamir rice. ohio.rs old, cleveland are they going to try to demonize and profile this baby? it don't matter what they say about our children. care for our children. we believe in our children. we love our children. to speak up for our children. we are willing to die for our children. because they are our children. if nobody stands up for our children, we will stand up for our children. we will stand together in every courtroom in america. brothers and sisters, without ado, i want to introduce a great leader. also from st. louis, missouri, our president of our national
bar association, the largest association of lawyers of color who will make sure we do get due process in missouri, staten island, cleveland and your neighborhood wherever you are from. we will represent because that's what our people expect us to do. that's why people people got dogs and water hoses turned on them. that's a we can make a lot of money. not so we can make a lot of money. but to represent our people. that's why i'm so proud of black lawyers across america who say we will stand up for our community, too. give it up for our president. [applause] and african-american lawyer
is either a social engineer or a sharpton-- reverend al cometh families of america, i came to let you know that the lawyers of the national bar association are social engineers , we're not parasites. when we are done, we will change the laws of this nation so that we can ensure that not another black brother or sister is lying dead in the street. they say to us, we are not profiled. i say to them, when we have thatrs and police officers the escalate force in communities like the white communities, we will stop speaking up. when the brother in the walmart
terrorizes the whole community, fights with a police officer, tries to take his gun three times but he is white and he lives, i say give me that police officer. when they apprehend a brother the right one that walked into a theater and shot up 14 people, then we will stop wanting the change the law. [applause] brothery apprehend a similar to the men that went in ,nd shot up the women's rally shop for people and a federal judge, they did not shoot him down. they called him down. him down.
when they start doing that in the black community, then we will think about telling them their system is not broken. the members of the national bar association, we are going to tell u.s. legal scholars the system is broken. scholar, i will tell backi don't take something to a system that is broken. i fixed that which is broken. implement state laws that say there must be strict -- when an officer sees a fictitious character in somebody, there is something wrong with that brother. there must be diversity training , not at the start, but in the
middle, in the middle come in the middle and at the end. most of you all were surprised that there was a no shoot bill. we were not. we understood that in 1982, the supreme court said that if an officer felt his life was in jeopardy, he could elevate the force to that level that he believed was reasonable in order to decrease the force. we call that a capricious standard. hill, puting to the some definition to excessive force. but some definition to what it means to elevate force and then train your officers to the escalate force instead of escalate force in black
to de-escalate 2-d esca force instead of escalate force in black communities. you get sensitive when we paint you with a brush that says all caps or bad. -- cops are bad. stop painingou to us with a brush that says all black people are bad. we want you to make it a crime. if i go into a store with a brother and he robs and i know nothing about it, you call that felony murder. you should go to jail with them. [applause]
thank you so much for being here. give her a round of applause. she is here, folks. that is the most important thing. let me bring if i can, the kumar.nt of the -- maria [applause] shot because he was holding a toy gun on his front yard. no questions asked. marchmmunity organized in -- a march to city hall asking for justice. with policeved snipers on the rooftops. this is my hometown of santa
rosa, california. life.s latino this knows no color -- epidemictely, it's an that they are too afraid to address. and whats me pleasure gives me excitement to know that when you look around the room right now in the halls of washington, they don't want us in their, but we are out here, all colors and creeds saying not one more of our sons, brothers or sisters are going to be shot dead.
today for latinos who are afraid to come out and voice their pain, two out of three latinos are afraid of police harassment. two out of three. out are embarrassed to come . i asked them today to take the strength of the mother of trayvon martin, that strength of eric garner's mother, the strength of michael brown's mother to come forth and unify with the african-american community so that we can be strung together. together.a [applause] not one more. come together. we are bigger together. we are unified together. no justice, no peace.
>> congresswoman carolyn maloney , united states congress of new york. >> thank you. thank you all for coming out. activists, unions, leaders. from where we stand is the supreme court building. engraved in stone above the entrance is one of the greatest promises ever made. equal justice under the law. we make that promise of equal justice to everyone. not some, not most, but all. so, let's be clear. this march today is not against the police. it is against unfair police
brutality. it is not against enforcing the law. it is for observing that great promise. equal justice, impartial justice for all. because we today have ample and heartbreaking reason to believe that some do not have equal justice. eric garner died because he was't suspected -- suspected of selling cigarettes on the streets. even if he was found guilty of this offense, there is no jail time. it is just a fine. and yet, eric garner was arrested. he was restrained. he was wrestled to the ground and he is dead.
dead and he was not even charged with a crime. there is something so wrong with that. to red and blue, democrat and republican, libertarian and liberal alike, to tell us all that there has come to be a terrible disconnect between what is just and what has become just business as usual. the corrosive effects of deniedypes and justice is a problem that is too big, too widespread and too dangerous to ignore. . it hasn't shaken many citizens beliefs in our system.
an attorney general that the s of the stop and frisk years. just 6% of those stops resulted in arrests. not of those arrests did result in conviction. over 2 million people, mostly black young men, were stopped for nothing. the promise of equal justice engraved above the supreme court asnot filled -- fulfilled long as men like eric garner can die for selling cigarettes and children like tamir rice can die innocentsround and can die on a stairway and men like michael brown can die on
one more and then the benediction to close up. >> what's up, america? i will be quick. everybody keeps asking me what kind of protest this is going to be. it should be why are they protesting. if you ask that question first and you fix that question, you don't have to ask why they are protesting. the last thing i want to say, we're spending a lot of time on police reform, which we should. but i don't want to get lost in the message of what's going on. the police are there because of community's asking for them. those same communities asked for jobsr housing and better and a better school system. the very same communities asked
economic streets and equality. this is about generational institutional oppression of communities in this country. we're not going to talk about one institution. we will talk about all institutions. i'm happy to see everybody out there. keep marching for justice, keep marching for equality. they marched before us. we are those who have always tried to keep america honest. keep on, keep strong. peace. from l.a. to all ohio, from ferguson to staten island, they will hear us and fear us because we are marching on to correctness. power to the people.
we are missing a young man, lynwood jones. please meet is right here at the corner to the left of the stage. lynwood jones, meet us right here at the corner to the right of the stage. thank you. we do not bring any minutes. we will close out with benediction. please welcome the x factor finalist, stacy francis. say, we havet to to all go back to who we know, and that is christ. we always go back to god. here will pray us out of today. i want to seeing something for you to be reminded of who lets us up and keeps a strong and
going to be easy. i don't believe he has brought us this far to leave us now. would you take your neighbor by the hand? everybody make sure somebody's hand is in your head. how are we going to get victory if we don't have the money of brothers? how will we find a triumphant victory when we are working in congress is on vacation? how will we get justice when families are crying? it looks like this and it is just laughing. the only way we are going to prevail is our secret weapon. god has never failed us. he has never forsaken us. godwant to know where the still works? god worked on black friday when we boycotted and we saw a hit by
a leopard percent because we kept our black dollars in our black pockets. they want to know where the god still works, not just in washington, in ferguson, in oakland and we have given a jor shout out to those in new york right now. [applause] this is not the end, it is the beginning. tomorrow is black solidarity sunday. every black denomination is , all of them us come a lutherans, black catholics, tomorrow, go to church wearing black. when you leave church, still be black. because hollywood it did not get the memo, jesus is black.
suret you to please make that tomorrow, we stand shoulder to shoulder and unarmed. years, the oned who has brought us so far along the way, we thank you because you know what it's like. bornemember when jesus was , you hid a leader. and next this, they tried to kill black boys but you hit once away leader could come forth. being sons being born right now who will lead us to the next place -- dispatch angels of protection around our sons from psychopathic, sociopathic police officers. i pray you will convict -- prosecutors who have given up
justice for popularity. for new registered voters who are going to march in 2016 until we have righteous congress people, righteous senators, and a righteous president. we don't just want black elected officials. we want a black agenda. we want to make sure our lives matter. it is a lifestyle, not a slogan. let us march on. for every person who opposes justice, who opposes righteousness, we came to remind them. we know when they are sleeping. we know when they are awake. we know when they have been good or bad. because they have been bad, please send black jesus for goodness sake. amen and god bless you. [applause]
>> the justice for all march and rally wrapping up now in washington, d.c. again at freedom plaza, made its way down pennsylvania avenue to the national mall near the capital. we will bring you portions of this event at 8:00 eastern on c-span. to whatside the capital is going on inside now, a live look at the senate floor. the chamber has been going in and out of executive session since noon so majority leader harry reid is able to file
cloture on a number of nominations. thetors have yet to debate spending bill that passed the house earlier this week. a vote to limit debate on the bill is expected late tonight. that would set up a final passage vote for as early as monday. with that being the case, senators are likely to consider a temporary spending measure that would extend government funding until wednesday. without its passage, current funding would expire at midnight tonight. more on that. both democrats and republicans have expressed displeasure with the omnibus spending bill. warren voiced concern yesterday about a provision that would ease certain financial regulations under dodd frank. likelycan's ted cruz and yesterday requested an amendment be offered to prevent funding
for president obama's executive order on immigration. that was denied by majority leader harry reid late last night. that from "time" magazine. senate watch the live on c-span2. week, political reporters share stories about being on the campaign trail with senator mitch mcconnell. >> he planned for four years this campaign. this started in 2010 right off to he saw what happened in the primary for rand paul. rand paul beat mcconnell's handpicked guy in that primary. mcconnell realized i have to recalibrate everything i know about republican primary politics in my home state. he started to make changes. he hired key staff. he started to build this sophisticated infrastructure knowing this would be the most difficult race in his campaign. >> they knew they were going to
spend a lot on technology. they watched the obama campaign in 2008 and 2012. they watched harry reid's election in 2010. they knew they needed to go -- it was a tough race. he was going to have the latest technology. in 2013, he said he was going to build the most thorough campaign ever in american history. he probably got there. >> sunday night at 8:00 eastern. and to mark 10 years, we are airing one program from each year starting december 22 at 7:00 eastern on c-span. next, a senate subcommittee hearing on policing practices and the criminal justice system. the first panel of witnesses includes new jersey senator cory booker and representatives keith ellison and luis gutierrez.
there followed by second panel with officials from the national organization from lack law and the blessed black law enforcement officials. this is just over two hours. what's good afternoon. today's hearing will deal with serious issues. the rules of the senate prohibit the showing of approbation or
disapprobation. outbursts, clapping, and demonstrations. this includes blocking. -- the fewer people around you. please be mindful of the rules as we conduct the hearing. i glad the capitol police are here to ensure the safety of everyone present. our identity as americans is , not on ideas and values ethnicity nor creed. this is what makes our nation unique. there hasfounding, been a divide between the promise and reality of america. in our who wrote declaration of independence that all men are created equal was a slave holder. the constitution, our founding charter, which those of us in congress swear to uphold and defend, originally treated african americans as property
and women as second-class citizens. the history of our country has been a long, slow, and painful march. brave men and women have fought and sacrificed, sometimes even giving their lives in the struggle to create a more perfect union that our national charter promised. many of us think about the greatest generation, the men and women who serve our nation so valiantly world war ii. i recently read the story that is an illustration of what america was like in world war ii. italians and germans captured in combat fighting our soldiers were brought to the united states as prisoners of war. they were held in places like military forts, like fort benning, georgia. at fort benning, the italian and german prisoners of war had access to make purchases in the
base exchange. african american soldiers did not have that opportunity or access. americans are incarcerated. that is triple the amount of 30 years ago. 25% for drug offenses. whites engage in drug offenses at a higher rate than african americans. but african americans are incarcerated at a rate 10 times greater than african americans for these offenses. america has changed. that same military that discriminated against african americans during world war ii is now a nation with an african american commander-in-chief. the election of our first black president shows we have come a long way as a nation.
but it is important to recognize and say very clearly there is still a challenge with racism in america, and we still have more work to do. this subcommittee has tried to look intently, not just to our past, but to our present and future, to examine what more needs to be done to protect civil and human rights in america. to understand in this subcommittee the human impact of the issues we debate by hearing directly from those most affected. we have given a platform to voice his that are not often heard in the halls of congress. i would like to show a brief video to remind us all what is at stake. [video clip] >> in 2001, she was sentenced to
prison for selling a small amount of crack cocaine. on thether testified discrepancy between crack and powdered cocaine. >> i'm here to tell you what my sister would say if she were here today. the severity of the mandatory minimums and asperity between track and powder cocaine have touched my family directly. she cannot be here because she's in federal prison for selling crack cocaine. >> after 18 years in prison, including 16 years in solitary confinement, anthony graves became the 12th death row inmate to be exonerated in texas. in 2012, he testified before the subcommittee at the first ever congressional hearing on solitary confinement. >> i have been free for almost two years. notill cry at night because
one can relate to what i have gone through. i have tried therapy, but it did not work. >> in august 2012, a gunman sikhd six people at a temple. one month after his mother died, he became the first sikh to testify in congress when he appeared at a subcommittee hearing on hate crimes. >> i came here to ask the government to give my mother the dignity of not being a statistic. it does not track hate crimes against sikhs. my mother and though shot that they will not even count on a federal form. we cannot solve a problem we refuse to recognize. >> in 2013, she testified at a secondary -- subcommittee hearing on the impact of so-called stand your ground laws.
her son was shot and killed walking through a residential neighborhood in sanford, florida. >> it is unfortunate what has hurried -- happened with trayvon. that is why i feel it is important for me to be here so that you all can at least put a face to what has happened with this tragedy. lucy also testified at a subcommittee hearing on stand your ground laws. her 17-year-old son was shot and killed listening to music with his friends in a car outside a convenience store in jacksonville, florida. >> you can never really know my boy because an angry man who close atun kept it hand and chose to demonstrate unbridled hatred one evening for reasons i will never understand. >> damon spent 15 years in solitary confinement at
louisiana state penitentiary before he was exonerated in 2012. damon testified about his experience at the subcommittee's second hearing on solitary confinement. >> i do not condone their offenses but i also don't condone what we do with them putting them in solitary for years on end and treating them subpoenaed. -- subhuman. we are better than that. as a civilized society, we should be better than that. >> her son with down syndrome was killed when he was forcibly removed from a movie theater in frederick, maryland, by three off-duty sheriff's deputies. ethan's story at the subcommittee's 2014 hearing on law enforcement responses to disabled americans. >> my son died of a six creation -- asphyxiation on the floor of the movie theater. he was not threatening.
he was not in crisis. >> i have often said this committee needs to focus on legislation, not limitation -- lamentation. we've taken the words of witnesses and translated them into action. with tom coburn of oklahoma who is retiring this year. together, we have passed four laws which give the government more power to prosecute human rights abusers. in 2012, the obama administration and this authority -- under this authority deported the liberian warlord for using child soldiers. after we learned of the powerful testimony of cedric parker, i work with senator jeff sessions of alabama and other members of the committee to pass the fair sentencing act which significantly reduced the sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine and
repealed the mandatory sentence for the first time since the nixon administration. after the first ever hearings on , theary confinement federal bureau of prisons agreed to my request to submit to the first independent assessment of solitary confinement policies and practices. after we heard the brave testimony, i successfully pushed the justice department to begin tracking hate crimes against sikh americans, hindu americans. we have been reminded there is when our to do government still believes it is acceptable in the name of security to profile people based on race for national origin, or religion, there's still more work to do. when muslim americans are the targets of violent crime simply because of their religion, there is still more work to do. when states around the country adopt laws that make it harder or minority communities to vote,
there is still more work to do. when unarmed african americans, men and boys, are killed. names like trayvon martin, jordan davis, michael brown, eric garner, bring tears to our more there is still work to do. when protesters take to the streets to shout out "i can ," black lives matter, there is still more work to do. trustamilies do not politics and criminal justice, there's still more work to do. thomas must accept its responsibility -- congress must accept its responsibility. we must pass bipartisan efforts to pass human and civil rights. we should pass the smarter sentencing act which i with others.
that is quite a broad spectrum of political belief. we all support this bill. we should restore federal voting rights for ex offenders, a cause by senator rand paul. there are 5.8 million americans who after paying their debt to society are still denied the right to vote. disenfranchisement has a disproportionate impact on people of color. we need to pass the voting rights amendment act which was authored by chairman leahy, and republican congressman jim sensenbrenner. this bipartisan legislation is a response to the shelby county decision. hearing ase my last chairman before i turn over the gavel to senator cruz, the incoming chairman. clearly, there is much work to do. i look forward to working with senator cruz in the 114th congress as we continue to struggle to create a more
perfect union. senator cruz? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i think the witnesses here today. there is no more important role for the united states senate then to carefully guard and protect civil rights of every american. we take an oath to uphold the constitution. that is a promise every american rightly should hold us accountable to honor. the chairman and i agree on a number of matters concerning civil rights. theth cosponsored smarter sentencing act which would reduce mandatory minimums for nonviolent drug offenders. and help restore the proper balance the federal deterrence and proportionality to these laws. we are cosponsors of the usa freedom act, which i believe strikes a better balance between the need to combat terrorism
through effective intelligence and at the same time protecting the privacy rights of everyday americans. i would note additionally that the hearing this committee held on solitary confinement policy earlier this year was, i think, a positive and productive hearing that shed light on the practice at the federal level and state level that needs to change. all of those are positive, yet, at the same time, civil rights remains a challenging topic in this country. a topic that is perceived differently by people of different racial backgrounds, ethnic backgrounds and socioeconomic backgrounds. we have seen the unfortunate reality in the last six years, income inequality has increased. in the last six years, the rich have gotten richer.
the top 1% today earn a higher share of our income than any year since 1928. and yet people who are struggling, young people, hispanics, african-americans, single moms, are finding their lives harder and harder and harder. when it comes to civil rights, i think there is no civil right more important than the right of every child to access a quality education. and in my view, the most compelling civil rights issue of the 21st century is the need to expand school choice and educational options so that every child regardless of race, ethnicity, zip code, wealth, has fair opportunity to receive an excellent education. unfortunately that has not been a focus of committee.
-- this committee. for the past two years. i'm hopeful it will become a focus of the committee in the coming years. i would note as well that a disturbing pattern has been demonstrated over the last several years of the federal government violating the constitutional rights of the citizenry. whether it is the i.r.s. disregarding the first amendment rights of citizens, asking individual citizens, tell us what books you're reading. tell us the content of your prayers. whether it is a consistent disregard for the second amendment. whether it is a disregard for religious freedom including unfortunately the federal government right now litigating against the little sisters of the poor, a catholic convent of nuns who have taken vows of
poverty, who devote their lives to caring for the poor and elderly, and yet they are in court with the federal government trying to impose millions of dollars of fines on them in order to force the nuns to pay for abortion inducing drugs contrary to their religious faith. beyond that, we have seen a pattern of lawlessness from the federal government that should trouble anyone concerned about civil liberties, concerned about the bill of rights. in my capacity as a ranking member, we have issued a series of five reports. cataloging the disregard of the constitution and bill of rights. from the administration. we cataloged 22 cases where the federal government has gone before the u.s. supreme court defending expanded federal power
and has been rejected unanimously 9-0. in one of those cases, the department of justice went before the u.s. supreme court and said the bill of rights says nothing about whether the federal government can put a g.p.s. locator on any citizen's car and the position of the department of justice was that that does not require probable cause. it does not require articulatable suspicion. under j o'jays position the left under d.o.j.'s position, every witness who attended this hearing today, every individual citizen who came, the federal government could go and place a g.p.s. on your automobile outside without raising any fourth amendment concerns whatsoever. that was an extraordinary position. thankfully, the supreme court rejected the department of justice's views 9-0.
we need to be vigilant defending the civil rights of every american and i look forward to this committee, the larger judiciary committee and to the senate continuing to do so and we need to have a particular responsibility to safeguard the bill of rights. i would note the saddest moment during my time in the senate was when 54 senate democrats cast a vote for a constitutional amendment to repeal the free speech protections of the first amendment. that was not consistent with our obligations to protect civil liberties and i am hopeful going forward we will be vigilant protecting the civil liberties of every american. thank you. >> thank you, senator cruz. we're going to turn to our first witness panel. we want to welcome cory booker, congressman luis gutierrez and congressman keith ellison.
and we're going to give senator -- there she is. we are going to give senator klobucher an opportunity to introduce congressman ellison. i want to note congressman judy choo had a schedule conflict and could not join us. each of our witnesses are going to have five minutes to make a statement and answer questions that may come up afterwards. i will acknowledge two members and turn to senator klobucher to acknowledge ellison. first to testify today will be senator cory booker of new jersey. last month he was re-elected to serve in the senate after winning a special election. senator booker serves on the committees of commerce, science and transportation, small business and environment. he is currently the only senate member of the congressional black caucus. following him will be congressman luis gutierrez from my state of illinois. last month re-elected to serve his 12th term. he is a member of the congressional caucus serves on , the house judiciary committee
and the select committee on intelligence. he previously testified before the subcommittee that our hearing on racial profiling in 2012 and our hearing on stand your ground laws in 2013, congressman gutierrez will follow senator booker. senator klobucher? >> thank you very much. we always have movies in the senate, congressman ellison. it is great to be here with senator booker and congressman gutierrez. thank you so much for being here. i'm really here to recognize my friend, keith ellison. keith and i go way back to when i was a prosecutor, the chief prosecutor and he was a criminal defense lawyer, but somehow we have remained friends through it all. i think it is a testament to everything that he has stood for. before he came to congress again, he also did a lot of civil rights work and so it prepared him for the work that he has done in the congress. he was the first muslim in congress and we are very proud of that in minnesota and he is a strong voice for justice and
civil rights. we worked on several bills together, environmental bills and other things. i think the thing that is most appropriate for this discussion today is the same day registration act, a bill that i'm working on in the senate and he has it in the house. it would reduce barriers to voting. when we think about the grand jury issues and who serves on grand juries, this is relevant, chairman durbin. it is relevant because the list from the grand jury comes from voter rolls. they also come from other places, especially from where we work to make sure other lists were included for who serves in grand juries. so when you limit who can vote, you actually also limit who can serve on grand juries because that is where you get your source for people that serve on grand juries if you want to have grand juries that reflect our community as well as law enforcement that reflect our community, we have done a lot of
great work with d.n.a. and with other things, videotaping interrogations that we're proud of. i think this is important to think about with the voter issues. there is a connection. thank you very much and we're glad to have you here, congressman ellison. >> just one second, please. twin cities, twin introductions. senator franken would like to say a word. >> first i want to associate myself with senator klobucher's remarks, mainly about keith and less about the grand jury, but that is important too. but keith is -- he is someone who has been talking about this -- these encounters between members and minority community and law enforcement long before we have got on the recent challenges that we are talking about today and that people have been talking about. but very proud of congressman ellison. >> senator cornyn? >> i want to make a brief statement. >> without objection, please.
>> i appreciate that. i just wanted to add a couple of words by way of thanks to you for convening this hearing to talk about a very important issue that is to all americans and that is the state of civil and human rights in this country of ours. and i know your focus is primarily going to be on the criminal justice system and i would say that i hope that this hearing will take a long view and not just a short-term view. obviously on our minds, the recent tragedies of what has occurred are fresh, but i think caution would tell us that we ought to wait until there has been a thorough investigation and all of the facts revealed before we draw any conclusions. i also worry that just the recent tragedies will somehow distract us in some ways from the great successes that law