The ANSWER Coalition is busy trying to sway public opinion against America going to war in Libya, let alone continuing to war in Iraq and Afghanistan. But a local off-shoot of the grass-roots national movement (which stands for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism) is not so preoccupied that it can't head to Long Beach to decry bad cops.
ANSWER's Long Beach Campaign to Stop Police Violence joins other activists, concerned community members and victims of Los Angeles Police Department brutality in picketing this afternoon's Long Beach Police Foundation Awards Ceremony at the Carpenter Center.
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The campaign began in the wake of the police killing of Douglas Zerby, who was shot outside a Belmont Shore apartment in December holding a "weapon" that turned out to be a garden nozzle. That incident caused a number of people to come forward with stories of having been victims of crimes and violence at the hands of Long Beach's finest, according to campaign organizers, who believe exposing bad cops is the only hope at changing things.
According to the campaign's notice to protest the 43rd annual Beach Police Awards Ceremony from 4-6 p.m. at the Carpenter Center for the Performing Arts, 6200 E. Atherton St. (on the campus of Cal State Long Beach):
At the awards ceremony, the Long Beach Police Foundation and LBPD attempt to paint the police as "heroes" in a blatant publicity stunt. To the vast majority of working-class and poor communities in Long Beach, the police are viewed as racist and violent oppressors that do little more than harass them. We will not sit by as the police award themselves for a year filled with unjust killings, tasings, terror tactics and cover-up operations. The police are hitmen, not heroes.
More information about the campaign is available by calling 213.251.1025 or emailing email@example.com.