ONTD Political

Protests and outrage over police shooting of Aboriginal teens

6:11 am - 04/25/2012
APTN National News: In Australia, the shooting of two Aboriginal teenagers over the weekend has police in full damage control mode.

Six youth were in a stolen car when it was driven onto a sidewalk. The car hit a woman and dragged her for several metres. That prompted police officers to open fire on the car.

The 14 year-old driver and an 18 year-old in the front seat were shot.

The video of the incident shows one of the teens who was shot being dragged out of the car and repeatedly punched by one of the officers.

The incident has sparked outrage and Australian police are calling for peace.

The death of another teenager by police sparked riots in 2004. (- Aboriginal Peoples Television Network, National News)

A protester holds up a sign during a rally outside the New South Wales parliament in Sydney on April 24. - Bangkok Post

Angry protesters rallied outside Sydney's Parliament House on Tuesday over the shooting by police of two Aboriginal teenagers arrested in a stolen car in the city's nightclub district.">

Bangkok Post: The 14-year-old driver was shot in the chest and his front-seat passenger, 18, took a bullet in the neck when police opened fire on their car after it mounted a crowded footpath in Kings Cross early Sunday.

Police have said they had little choice after a woman was knocked over by the car and others were forced to leap from its its path.

But mobile phone footage shot by onlookers showing an officer punching and dragging one of those in the car along the ground has prompted accusations of excessive force and fed into racial tensions over the incident.

About 150 people including a number of the injured boys' friends gathered outside the New South Wales state parliament to protest their treatment, waving banners condemning racism and calling for an independent inquiry.

"You got a reason to hate the coppers, you know, when you're a young kid. But this crosses the line. (It's) straight-out racism," said 16-year-old Douglas Martin, a friend of the injured.

"I want them to get punished. Treat them the same as normal citizens. Just because they're coppers, that's just a... uniform, that's just a name."

Renowned Aboriginal boxer Anthony Mundine was among the demonstrators and described the shooting as "brutality at its best".

"There is no justification to just open fire like that, point-blank range, and furthermore bash them," said Mundine.

"There has been no ramifications, there's been no ramifications to the officers. Questions have got to be answered," he added.

Mundine said he had grown up with one of the boys' fathers and seeing the injured teens had been distressing.

"I saw the bloke and it just broke my heart to be honest. It really broke my heart. Fighting for his life you know?"

Police have repeatedly called for calm following the shooting, particularly in the impoverished inner-city Aboriginal district of Redfern, where wild rioting has taken place in the past.

One of Tuesday's rally's organisers, Ray Jackson, called for an independent inquiry into the shootings.

"We don't want police investigating themselves. That's never worked in the past, that's not going to work this time," Jackson told ABC Radio.

"We don't see any value in that. It's time the government bit the bullet and actually did something about setting up an independent investigative body."

Aborigines are Australia's most disadvantaged minority, with shorter life expectancy and much higher rates of imprisonment and disease than the broader population.

Primary Source - Bangkok Post
See also: The Ridge News
(no subject) - Anonymous
kaowolfie 26th-Apr-2012 05:28 am (UTC)
There are absolutely parallels between how Australia, Canada, and the US have handled their respective indigenous populations. I have a dodgy memory because of migraines, and sometimes incidents blend together in my head because the root causes, modern and historical, are so much the same. Or I get dates of residential schools and stolen generations mucked up, because it happened in all three countries... you know?

Also, I miss anthropology. I took twelve credits of it from a really awesome dude when I was younger - he'd spent his entire working career helping US Indian tribes fuck the BIA over as much as they could, and get as much aid as they could.
(no subject) - Anonymous
kaowolfie 27th-Apr-2012 08:37 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I had some familiarity with the fuckery because my mom's dad was half-Creek. He spent his life trying to pass for white for his own safety, and refused to teach my mom anything about her family history from his side. Then he died in his 40s from cirrhosis of the liver related to alcoholism, so now I have a really violent reaction to people who crack "jokes" about those damn Indians and their "firewater" - it's not fucking funny. It's especially not fucking funny when alcoholism killed your grandfather and his father, and they drank to try and cope with living in a racist society that was committing literal and cultural genocide against them.

Cool story, sis, but I'm kinda wishing that we hadn't been raised white, now. While I could pass sometimes in the DC area, and assumed people's static was due to my clothes, I don't pass at all in Missouri. My husband's Cherokee and Blackfoot, and he's been having to teach me to cope, the way his dad taught him. It's been a sobering experience, especially since I know that I've got it *easy*. but I'm still really sad that if we see a lot of cops when we do a drive-by of the state capitol tomorrow, I can't safely go protest. :( He had to explain that to me in small words yesterday, which was a weird reversal since he semi-trusts the city cops to not be constant douchebags and I expect all cops to be potentially violent.
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