New York — A flying squad of activists from New Yorkers Against Bratton confronted Mayor Bill de Blasio as he left the Preschool Nation Summit in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood Aug. 5. They chanted, “Hey, hey, De Blasio! Bratton’s got to go!” and “Justice for Eric Garner!”
Democrat De Blasio swept to victory last year on his reputation as a progressive and on campaign promises to end stop-and-frisk racial profiling. But once elected, his appointment to head the New York Police Department was Bill Bratton — the architect of stop-and-frisk under arch-racist Mayor Rudy Giuliani in the 1990s.
As police rushed De Blasio into his sport utility vehicle, protesters loudly demanded that he fire racist New York Police Commissioner Bratton and end his “broken windows” policing policy that racially profiles Black, Latino/a and other New Yorkers of color.
It was this type of occupation-style policing championed by Bratton that led to the NYPD murder July 17 of African-American father of six Eric Garner by an illegal chokehold in Staten Island. Police claimed they went after Garner because he was allegedly selling individual cigarettes.
“Mayor de Blasio is appearing at this summit to talk about early childhood education,” said parent and activist Greg Butterfield. “But what kind of education is he giving the children of New York when his police kill their parents and family members?”