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By Carl Dix and Cornel West

The NYPD storming into people's homes before dawn on June 4th wearing body armor and carrying assault weapons, with battering rams to break down doors while helicopters hovered overhead were the actions of an occupying army and not of an institution that serves the public. Was putting guns in the faces of small children and grandparents and forcing a young women to lay on the floor half naked while male officers ransacked her room a display of the Courtesy and Respect New York City officials claim their cops give to the citizenry?

We strongly condemn these raids, and we call on everyone with an ounce of justice in their hearts to join us in condemning them. We must not turn our eyes away from this injustice because it wasn't our homes that these police marauded into, and we must not leave the people of Harlem alone in resisting this horrible mistreatment. They are our sisters and brothers. We love them, and we must care about what is done to them.

We must also note that these brutal, Gestapo style raids are in keeping with the way the NYPD has historically mistreated people. These raids and Operation Crew-cut overall, just like Stop and Frisk, are rooted in the way that Black and Latino youth have been criminalized in this society, treated like they're guilty until proven innocent, if they can survive to prove their innocence. This is illegitimate and unacceptable. It must be stopped. We initiated the civil disobedience campaign to Stop “Stop & Frisk” in 2011 to stop horrors like this, and we will continue and accelerate our efforts to stop it.

To the residents resisting these raids: We pledge to be with you in this fight, always in spirit and physically when we can. And we will take your spirit of resistance into the mobilization for the October Month of Resistance to Mass Incarceration, Police Terror, Repression and the Criminalization of a Generation. We call on everyone to join us, both in resisting these raids and in manifesting resistance in October that is powerful enough to change the way millions of people see the way the criminal justice system mistreats so many people.