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Thousands march for Black lives in Dallas

By Cassandra Swart

Demand community control of the police, and resignation of Chief Hall

Dallas protest against police crimes.

Dallas, TX – On Saturday, June 6, about 5000 people rallied in 100-degree weather at Belo Garden Park across the street from the Earle Cabell Federal Building in downtown Dallas, to demand justice for victims of police violence, community control of the police, and the resignation of Renee Hall, the chief of the Dallas Police Department.

The protest was called by the Dallas Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (DAARPR), Progressive Student Union at the University of Texas at Arlington American Muslims for Palestine Dallas, Migrante Texas, and Black Youth Project 100-Dallas. First the crowd heard speeches, starting off with an introduction by Syd Loving, coordinator of DAARPR, demanding community control of the police. Next was Jennifer Miller, co-coordinator of DAARPR, calling for the resignation of Chief Renee Hall in response to violent police attacks on protesters.

Those attacks included the case of Brandon Saenz, who lost his eye while peacefully attending a DAARPR-organized May 30 protest after being shot in the face by projectiles fired by the police. Tear gas was used and rubber bullets were fired on crowds of protesters – including children. Miller also mentioned the mass arrest of hundreds of protestors on June 1 at Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. “Chief Hall, you are complicit and guilty of crimes against the city of Dallas, and the people who visit it!” declared Miller, “You have the moral duty and obligation to resign!”

Drew Carter, president of the Black Student Union at Rice University, talked about the connection of the modern police to slave patrols, and called for the removal of police occupying Black and brown communities. Avee Herrera of the National Alliance for Filipino Concerns-Texas, called for solidarity between the Black and Filipino community and linked the struggle in the Philippines against police terror to the struggle against police terror in the United States, pointing out that American police train Filipino police.

Fadya Risheq of American Muslims for Palestine spoke and linked the struggle of Palestinians against the Israel apartheid government to the struggle against police terror in the United States, mentioning that the Minneapolis Police Department received assistance from the Israeli Defense Forces. Next the crowd heard from Indianna Taylor of Black Youth Project 100-Dallas, who announced the demands for the city to divest in the Dallas Police Department and invest more in community services, to free incarcerated prisoners locked up unjustly, whether wrongfully convicted or convicted of low-level crimes, and an end to police brutality against Black people.

The crowd then marched around downtown Dallas past City Hall. The crowds chanted the names of recent victims of police terror such as George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, as well as chants such as “I can't breathe,” “Fuck 12,” “ACAB” and “No justice, no peace.” On their way back the marchers stopped and kneeled for eight minutes in memory of George Floyd and other victims of police terror. The crowd then returned to Belo Garden Park to hearing closing statements from the Dallas Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression.

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