Take a Stand Pulaski: A Call for Pulaski, TN to Respond to the Racial Issues of the Nation

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The wrongful death of George Floyd at the hands of the Minneapolis police department has thus far shown the nation that racism and institutional discrimination refuses to cease, even as the world is plunged into the troubled waters of a global pandemic. Some of the citizens of Pulaski, Tennessee believe that the small, rural town has no need for a protest involving a corrupt system that has no seeming evidence of taking place on its quiet streets, and there’s two responses to this belief.

First, the town’s secluded, rural nature still does not exempt the Pulaski Police Department and Pulaski’s citizens from the consequences of a criminal justice system that continues to judge friends and strangers alike not by the content of their character, but by the color of their skin. Not only that, but the town’s peaceful streets further makes it our mission, as civil servants to the state of Tennessee, to ensure that a tragic incident like that of George Floyd’s case never occurs on any county street in any given future. Secondly, Pulaski’s stained, dark  history of suppression is the very reason why the town must not only protest against police brutality and racism, but also take further steps to make it known that its streets no longer stand as a martyr to white supremacy and suppression.

It is with these two statements in mind that I take my stand of action, and officially announce my creation of a petition addressing the following: One, a call for Pulaski’s NAACP chapter, along with other advocates that wish for action, to spearhead the coordination of a meaningful, effective, unified, and peaceful march on the streets of Pulaski, protesting the unjustifiable causes of police brutality, institutional discrimination within the criminal justice system, white supremacy, and racism. Two.a call on Police Chief John Dickey, the Pulaski Police Department, Sheriff Kyle Helton, the Giles County Sheriff’s Department, and other Giles County officials to open a town hall discussion into the precautionary steps and methods Giles can take to best prevent the atrocities of police brutality and excessive force from occurring in any corner of the county. Finally, a call on Giles County Executive Melissa Greene, Pulaski Mayor Pat Ford, and City Attorney Andrew Hoover to pursue in the effort of legally relocating the Sam Davis statue from its suppressive place on Pulaski’s square to its rightful place in the Sam Davis Museum. Furthermore, in replacement of this statue, I call for these city officials to form a diverse, inclusive council directly tasked with finding both an honorable town figure to commemorate in the monument's place, and finding a more suitable, considerable name for Sam Davis Park.

If you are currently experiencing the same feeling I found myself in a few weeks ago, you may not yet know your place in this moment in history, or how you can leave your own mark. I can assure you that doing this small act is one small, yet monumental way you can take that first step into action. I encourage all who may see this to continue looking into what I have discussed by reading my Official Petition Statement. Also I encourage you all to please share, copy and paste, whatever you may need to do to get the message out to all of those willing to listen! To simply put it,  it’s time for change! Let’s make it happen together!