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“The decision by a grand jury not to indict in the death of Eric Garner is a miscarriage of justice. It’s an outrage, it’s a disgrace, it’s a blow to our democracy and it should shock the conscience of every single American who cares about justice and fair play,” said Rep. Hakeem Jeffries.

New York, N.Y. – A U.S. congressional delegation of Congressmen from New York, representing a broad cross section of ethnicity, held a press conference to express their absolute disgust with the grand jury decision to not indict anyone in the killing of Eric Garner.

“The decision by a grand jury not to indict in the death of Eric Garner is a miscarriage of justice. It’s an outrage, it’s a disgrace, it’s a blow to our democracy and it should shock the conscience of every single American who cares about justice and fair play,” said Rep. Hakeem Jeffries.

The words expressed by these congressmen are some of the most genuine reactions to ever be publicly displayed by politicians, in regards to the American police state.

Since the grand jury decision, demonstrations have sprung up across the country to protest the extreme injustice that has taken place. The killing of Garner has cast a dark shadow over the entire U.S. justice system, as well as those entrusted to enforce the law.

Rep. Jefferies went on to say,

“Eric Garner did not deserve to die. He was placed in a choke hold that is illegal. His death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner. He begged for his life. He said over and over and over again that he could not breath There were multiple officers on the scene who did not intervene and he was killed in plain sight for all of America to see, because this was captured on video. And so it’s inexplicable that this grand jury could not return a single charge, this grand jury couldn’t return a charge for assault, this grand jury couldn’t return a charge for involuntary manslaughter, this grand jury couldn’t return a charge for criminally negligent homicide, this grand jury couldn’t return a charge for reckless endangerment of human life, this grand jury couldn’t even see fit to charge this officer with a misdemeanor, what more does America need to see. I’m struggling because I’m a father of two young African American boys and I don’t know what to say to them about what’s happening in this country right now. We’re better than this as a country.”

The delegation of congressmen, were flabbergasted as to how the grand jury, given the evidence available, could not have returned an indictment.

The idea of body cameras on officers, recently forward by President Obama, which has been made out to be a solution to the problem of police brutality, was questioned by Representative Gregory Meeks.

“What good is a body camera? A body camera is supposed to be utilized so you can see the facts of what took place, so in effect we had a body camera here we’ve seen it all from an individual and there’s been a lot of media hysteria about hands up but hands up isn’t just about Ferguson because if you look at this video it shows Eric Garner had his hands up pulling back, not going toward anyone, but pulling back, so hands up is not just about Ferguson it’s about the issue of what were talking about with police and young black males,” said Rep. Meeks.

Rep. Meeks went on to question how the U.S. can call out other nations for violating human rights and yet allow this type of behavior in America. He then went on to liken the recent events of police abuse of authority and lack of justice in America to the U.S. of old and urged that if there is no justice that perhaps Americans need to take to the streets to make their voices heard.

Rep. Meeks, a former prosecutor himself, then questioned the grand jury process stating,

“If justice can’t be had in a clear and transparent manner, through a grand jury system, which it’s been clearly stated that you could indict a ham sandwich if you wanted to, then I think, and although generally the grand jury process is a secret process, then I think we’ve got to call on DA Murphy to open this process up. We need to know exactly… We need to see the transcripts. We need to know whether or not after he presented his case, whether he asked that grand jury for an indictment or not. That’s important, I’m a former prosecutor. And I know when you take a case to a grand jury when you finish because all you wanna do is prove probable cause. That tape was probable cause by itself. Then you go back and you ask the grand jury for an indictment. We need to know Mr. Murphy… did you ask that grand jury for an indictment? We need to know how those witnesses were treated and what questions were asked, other witnesses that were presented. All of the facts have to be open and clear and transparent. Because America, I hope you are looking, I hope your looking and your eyes are open, your eyes are not lying, that tape was real.”

With such passionate displays by these sitting United States Congressmen, it is clear that this miscarriage of justice has not only been felt across main street of America but also in halls of Congress.

Let us hope that the emotions that are so visceral today can be translated into solutions to reign in an over militarized police state that is entrenched in American society.

Perhaps the coalition of citizens and politicians together can begin to reign in the out of control law enforcement apparatus that dominates American society with little to no accountability.


Jay Syrmopoulos is an investigative journalist, freethinker, researcher, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs. Jay’s work has previously been published on BenSwann.com and WeAreChange.org. You can follow him on Twitter @sirmetropolis, on Facebook at Sir Metropolis and now on tsu.


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Jay Syrmopoulos is a geopolitical analyst, freethinker, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at the University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs and holds a BA in International Relations. Jay's writing has been featured on both mainstream and independent media - and has been viewed tens of millions of times. You can follow him on Twitter @SirMetropolis and on Facebook at SirMetropolis.