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Coffee Party USA Statement about the lack of indictment in Ferguson

Absence of Justice

There is an absence of justice in our country. It is keenly felt in African American, Latino and other communities, where racial profiling has resulted in higher arrest rates, convictions and longer sentencing than caucasian offenders. We have criminalized mental illness and substance abuse; our largest treatment centers are the jails and prisons. After arrest, many people are retained without bail to await trial and chances for rehabilitation diminish as the “institution-mentality” takes root. While incarcerated, men and women are treated like animals and bullying is a survival strategy. This is the setting in which the lack of indictment in the shooting death of Michael Brown occurred.

Michael Brown was not a poster child for the cause of criminal justice reform; but his death has brought to the forefront the absurd inequality of our culture and the absence of justice in a system that claims to be the best in the world. And what we see via mainstream media cannot begin to convey the rage of generational injustice that our neighbors have endured. And make no mistake. This RAGE will not go unanswered.

This week, millions of people are standing up and saying ENOUGH. We will not be bullied into submission nor condescended to as children. We are equals. The police and government are public servants of our collective needs. It is our responsibility to convey our needs, interact and build relationships that are healthy and dignified. The peaceful protesters are speaking for many about the need for true equality before the law.

We stand in solidarity for justice.