For Immediate Release
July 12, 2016
- Aaron Abriam-Orpilla, Political Affairs Coordinator of Pilipino American Collegiate Endeavor, firstname.lastname@example.org
- Aaron Agudelo, Member of Intervarsity Kapwa – San Francisco State University Chapter
- Angeline Ubaldo, Solidarity Officer of League of Filipino Students – San Francisco State University Chapter, LFS.SFSU@gmail.com
- Judith Marie Cantiller, Community Action Chair of Kappa Psi Epsilon – Beta Chapter
- Noel Balce, Community Chair of Chi Rho Omicron – Beta Chapter, email@example.com
- Sandra Salinas, President of Alpha Kappa Omicron – Alpha Chapter, firstname.lastname@example.org
MULA SA UGAT STANDS IN SOLIDARITY FOR BLACK POWER!
Mula Sa Ugat, the alliance of Filipino organizations at San Francisco State University condemns the state-sanctioned murder of black lives, most recently Philando Castile, 32, of Falcon Heights, Minnesota and Alton Sterling, 37, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. We extend our deepest condolences to both men’s families and mourn alongside the black community.
On July 5, Sterling was selling CDs in front of a convenience store until an anonymous caller tipped the Baton Rouge police off and alleged that Sterling was threatening them with a gun. Two police officers tackled Sterling, who was not resisting, and fatally shot him. On July 6, Castile was pulled over due to a broken tail light but the police shot him in his car as he was reaching for his driver’s license and registration. Castile’s girlfriend and her four-year-old daughter were in the vehicle when they opened fire with no regard for the child’s safety. These are not isolated incidents: As of July 7, 116 Black Americans have been killed by the police in 2016 alone.
It is vividly clear that racial discrimination against Black Americans have persisted through the civil rights movement. Structural racism issues left unattended allowed the police officers to act as judge, jury, and executioner in the cases of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.
The U.S. was built on the backs of Black Americans’ unpaid and stolen labor. Historically the main intent of the U.S. government and law enforcement was never meant to protect and serve black people in the United States.
The oppression and killings of Black Americans have persisted since the inception of the U.S., and yet it seems that only now that the veil of ignorance on this structural violence is being pulled back centimeter by centimeter. We must remember that anti-black racism is the crux of racism against other people of color. We cannot achieve justice and liberation without uniting with black people.
As Filipino Americans, we recognize how our struggle is connected with theirs with our roots stemming from solidarity during the civil rights movement. Even during the Filipino-American War of 1899, it was recognized how African Americans from the Buffalo Soldiers defected from the U.S. to unite with the Filipino people in their struggle against American colonizers.
The Black Lives Matter movement exists because black people continue to be the most oppressed in American society and face the most severe social and economic difficulties.
The BLM movement and we, as Filipinos, should act with and under the leadership of black people. It is our responsibility for us as Filipino youth is to educate ourselves on BLM and understand the anti-blackness that is within our community in order to understand the discrimination we all face as people of color. A mass movement, that serves the interests of the people should be first and foremost people-oriented. It must aim to unite and create a collective culture where we love each other and support each other.
We express our deepest sympathies to the affected families of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, and all other victims of state violence and structural inequality.
We stand firmly with black lives.
Filipinos in Solidarity with the black Community at a Rally in San Francisco
Photo Credit: Irma Bajar, Gabriela-USA National Chairperson
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
Alton Sterling – Philando Castile – their names must be said until it is heard.
Beyond their names are the lives they lived before they were stripped away.
END STATE VIOLENCE! END POLICE TERROR! COMBAT INEQUALITY!
CHANGE THE JUSTICE SYSTEM TO TRULY SERVE THE PEOPLE!
BLACK LIVES MATTER!