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George Floyd Protest: 57 Buffalo police officers quit emergency team after 2 suspended for allegedly shoving 75-year-old man
Fifty-seven police officers in Buffalo, New York, have resigned from the force's emergency response team following the suspension of two officers who allegedly pushed a 75-year-old protester to the ground, a source close to the situation informed CNN on Friday (local time).
An investigation is underway in a protest incident Governor Andrew Cuomo called "wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful." The man was seriously injured.
After a video of police shoving a 75-year-old white protester who approached them in a city in New York state went viral, two of them were suspended, but all the members of the emergency team resigned in protest.
Video of the demonstration on Thursday showed a row of officers walking toward the man and as he nears them a policeman shoves him with his baton and another with his hand and he falls backwards and injures his head. His head bleeds onto the sidewalk as officers walk past him, some looking down at him.
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT Video shows two police officers in Buffalo, New York, shoving a 75-year-old man to the ground. The sound of a crack is heard and blood trickles from the man’s head https://reut.rs/2Y9eLF0
12:00 AM - Jun 5, 2020
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Gugino was hospitalised and his lawyer told the local NBC affiliate, WGRZ, on Friday that he was "alert and oriented".
The demonstrators in Niagara Square were, like those across the country, calling for racial justice after the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
The 57 officers resigned from the emergency unit but not from the force. The Buffalo mayor's office told CNN that the 57 members that resigned from the unit make up the entire active emergency response team.
A 75-year-old protester falls to the ground after being shoved by Buffalo, New York, police, on June 4, 2020, after Buffalos curfew went into effect, according to media reports.AFP
he protester was reported to be in stable but serious condition at a local hospitalAFP
A few members of the unit are out currently and are not included in the 57 that resigned, according to the mayor's office.
"Fifty-seven resigned in disgust because of the treatment of two of their members, who were simply executing orders," Buffalo Police Benevolent Association president John Evans told WGRZ on Friday.
But responding to the suspensions, all the 57 members of Buffalo's police emergency response team resigned from the unit "in disgust because of the treatment of two of their members, who were simply executing orders", WGRZ quoted police union president John Evans as saying.
The man identified as Martin Gugino, as confirmed by Cuomo's office, is currently hospitalized and is reported to be in serious but stable condition, as per authorities.
Attorney Kelly V. Zarone representing Gugino released a statement saying he is "alert and oriented" and described him as a longtime peaceful protester and human rights advocate.
"Mr. Gugino requests privacy for himself and his family as he recovers," Zarone said.
"He appreciates all of the well wishes he has received and requests that any further protests continue to be peaceful," Zarone added.
Megan Toufexis, Gugino's daughter, told CNN that her father attended the protest Thursday to discuss First Amendment rights with police.
Protests in the city continued into the evening Friday.
While police excesses, especially against minorities, are in focus because of the nationwide protests triggered by the dead of George Floyd, an unarmed African-American man in Minneapolis on May 25 while in police custody, the force have also come under attack.
In the most serious incident in New York City, one police officer was stabbed in the neck and two others were shot on Wednesday night while on patrol to stop looters.
A police officer was shot in the head in Las Vegas and four police officers were injured and a retired police captain killed by gunfire in St Louis, Missouri, on Tuesday.
Police have also been hit with stones, bricks and other objects during protests, while videos are also surfacing every day of police excesses against protesters.
After brazen looting of stores across in New York City on Monday night, Cuomo faulted New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and called his leadership a "disgrace".
But after he tightened enforcement, he was criticised for police actions and booed on Thursday when he spoke at a memorial service for Floyd.
Justice for George Floyd: Why 'the white liberal' is the worst enemy to the black man' by Malcolm X
The rights of the black man in America is again in the news after the horrific killing of George Floyd by a racist white cop which has resulted in pan-America process.
At such a crucial juncture, it becomes even more important to understand black history in America and its two leading figures – Martin Luther King Jr and Malcolm X.
The two were divided like Professor X and Magneto in X-Men, where mutant rights became an analogy for black rights. While the former believed in peaceful means, the latter believed mutants had to take their stand with force.
While King advocated non-violence and passive resistance, Malcolm X as spokesman of the Nation of Islam (NOI) wanted to violently reject America and its Christian values, which he believed advocated white supremacy over black.
As historian James H Cone explained once: “King was working to take down signs that prevented black people from riding buses where they wanted to, and to ride in trains, public transportation, preventing them from voting, and all of those things that black people were prevented from doing in the south. In the north, blacks always could vote, but as Malcolm said 'You may have the vote but you ain't no voting for nothing because they've already decided that you are not going to have any power’.”
He didn’t believe in turning the other cheek unlike King who was deeply influenced Mahatma Gandhi.
And he had had a great mistrust of the ‘white liberal’. Here’s a speech he made in 1963, when he was a member of the Nation of Islam. He would later quit and become a Sunni Muslim.
The White Liberal
“The white liberal is the worst enemy to America, and the worst enemy to the black man. Let me explain what I mean by the white liberal. In America there is no such thing as Democrat or Republican anymore. In America you have liberals and conservatives. The only people living in the past who think in terms of I’m a Democrat or Republican, is the American Negro.
He’s the one that runs around bragging about party affiliation. He’s the one that sticks to the Democrat or sticks to the Republican. But white people are divided into two groups, liberals and conservative. The Democrats who are conservative, vote with the Republicans who are conservative. The Democrats who are liberal vote with the Republicans that are liberal. The white liberal aren’t white people who are for independence, who are moral and ethical in their thinking. They are just a faction of white people that are jockeying for power. The same as the white conservative is a faction of white people that are jockeying for power.
They are fighting each other for power and prestige, and the one that is the football in the game is the Negro, 20 million black people. A political football, a political pawn, an economic football, and economic pawn. A social football, a social pawn. The liberal elements of whites are those who have perfected the art of selling themselves to the Negro as a friend of the Negro. Getting sympathy of the Negro, getting the allegiance of the Negro, and getting the mind of the Negro.
Then the Negro sides with the white liberal, and the white liberal use the Negro against the white conservative. So that anything that the Negro does is never for his own good, never for his own advancement, never for his own progress, he’s only a pawn in the hands of the white liberal.
The worst enemy that the Negro have is this white man that runs around here drooling at the mouth professing to love Negros, and calling himself a liberal, and it is following these white liberals that has perpetuated problems that Negros have. If the Negro wasn’t taken, tricked, or deceived by the white liberal then Negros would get together and solve our own problems. I only cite these things to show you that in America the history of the white liberal has been nothing but a series of trickery designed to make Negros think that the white liberal was going to solve our problems.
Our problems will never be solved by the white man. The only way that our problem will be solved is when the black man wakes up, clean himself up, stand on his own feet and stop begging the white man, and take immediate steps to do for ourselves the things that we have been waiting on the white man to do for us.
Once we do for self then we will be able to solve our own problems’ "The white conservatives aren't friends of the Negro either, but they at least don't try to hide it. They are like wolves; they show their teeth in a snarl that keeps the Negro always aware of where he stands with them. But the white liberals are foxes, who also show their teeth to the Negro but pretend that they are smiling. The white liberals are more dangerous than the conservatives; they lure the Negro, and as the Negro runs from the growling wolf, he flees into the open jaws of the "smiling" fox. One is the wolf, the other is a fox. No matter what, they’ll both eat you.”
Source: Digital History