May 3rd was the end of the USC semester and supposed to represent another school year’s accomplishments for USC students. However, a celebratory party turned warzone transformed that night into a devastating memory for many students. When LAPD gathered 79 officers at a house party on 23rd street, the cheerful atmosphere quickly perished. The majority of the party’s attendees were Black. I not only felt threatened but also like a criminal. The only thing I did that night was believe that it was possible for me to be Black as well as have the ability to celebrate without having to deal with unfair profiling. Is that something a student should be punished for? Yesterday's events did not see the first time that such an encounter with LAPD took place. And this has to STOP.
"By now most people know what happened to the African-American USC students that attended last night's party at Nate's. I was one of the students detained, but was one of the main people trying to disperse the crowd. To everyone there last night that witnessed the event, I want you to understand the power that you possess. Physically fighting back with the police in that situation is not how we win. We have to fight back using the intellect that we've developed. I've never before felt like an animal until last night and that was just a sliver of what it must've been like for those in the Civil Rights movement. Times have changed. As Blacks, we've been waiting for a HERO for too long. That day when one person stands on a soapbox and boisterously promotes his opinion to his followers is over. YOU HAVE TO BE THAT PERSON. Our new soapboxes are these blog websites, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, ETC. We clearly see this animosity between us, DPS, LAPD, and a few IGNORANT students beginning to build. It's all good! I want everyone who is going to attend the open dialogue between us and the Southwest LAPD division on Tuesday at 6pm in the Annenberg Auditorium [moved to the Ronald Tutor Campus Center Ballroom], I want you to create a list of demands you feel we need if, and when a similar situation to last night's arises. For example, there needs to be an emergency call number for Campus Cruiser that we can call to evacuate students in light of an emergency, or legal advisors for mediation or legal support. Come up with methods reasonable and necessary. I’m not okay with this situation and I hope everyone reading this, no matter what racial group you identify with, comes out to support this conversation. PEACE"
These are the words of Jason Sneed, a graduating USC senior, a Political Science major studying Law and Public Policy, and Vice President of USC’s Black Student Assembly. Jason, as well as a diverse group of USC students dedicated to the cause are asking for YOUR help and support. PLEASE, sign and share this petition to combat the ever so prevalent issue of racial profiling!
Alice Rakotoarison started this petition with a single signature, and now has 4,509 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.