NEW YORK—Princeton University professor Cornel West was among a few dozen protesters arrested at a solidarity march on Friday as OWS activists locked arms with members of progressive groups in front of a Harlem police station. The crowd of a couple of hundred was protesting the practice of “stop-and-frisk,” which allows officers to stop and search city residents on the street.
Data shows that blacks and Hispanics are disproportionately targeted by the practice. The stops have become more frequent since Mayor Michael Bloomberg took office. Last year 600,000 stops were performed, 87 percent of which were on nonwhites. Only 7 percent resulted in arrests.
Participation in Friday’s march by Wall Street protesters shows the wide breadth of issues that those encamped in Liberty Plaza want to incorporate into their program. Stop-and-frisk was officially adopted as an OWS issue Thursday when protesters voted to endorse the campaign against the practice during a general assembly.
Click below to see and hear the speech West gave minutes before he and others were arrested. —Alexander Reed Kelly
Justin Elliot at Salon:
The number of stop and frisks have soared under Mayor Michael Bloomberg, with 600,000 stops performed last year. 87 percent of those stopped last year were black or Hispanic, a number disproportionate to their share of the population. And just 7 percent of the stops resulted in arrests, meaning the vast majority of those stopped committed no crime. The NYPD argues the practice reduces crime, but it has been coming under increasingly intense criticism in recent months.