NYC Protesters Denounce Mayor
NEW YORK (AP) _ More than 2,000 people marched from Brooklyn to City Hall demanding Mayor Rudolph Giuliani’s resignation over his handling of fatal police shootings of unarmed black men.
Protesters on the three-mile march also vowed to make sure Giuliani doesn’t win his bid for the U.S. Senate.
``You all have got to vote!″ shouted Marie Dorismond, whose brother, Patrick, was killed by police outside a Manhattan bar.
``All of this will mean nothing if you don’t vote. One vote will make one big difference. I’m tired of crying for black brothers.″
The mostly Haitian-American crowd specifically chanted the names of Amadou Diallo, Dorismond and Malcolm Ferguson, punctuating their cries with: ``Giuliani must go!″
Diallo was shot to death in 1999 by four white police officers, who were acquitted of all charges. Ferguson, who was fatally shot during an undercover drug raid, and Dorismond were killed this year.
In each case, Giuliani has vociferously defended the police. He sometimes sought to shift blame for the shootings to the victims and was criticized for releasing Dorismond’s sealed juvenile criminal record.
Giuliani’s office did not return a telephone call for comment on the rally but said earlier in the day: ``People have a right to protest, I really have no problem with that at all as long as they do it peacefully.″
There was no mention by speakers at the rally that if Giuliani loses the Senate race in November to Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton, he will remain mayor until 2001.
The protesters voiced anger toward the NYPD as well, but their real focus was Giuliani, and sign after sign depicted the mayor as the devil or as Adolf Hitler. The signs were cheered by about hundred onlookers as the marchers came off the Brooklyn Bridge into Manhattan.
``Giuliani violates human rights,″ ``Giuliani, the new Hitler,″ and ``Stop and frisk Giuliani, book him up for racism,″ read some of the signs.
One person was arrested during the protest, but he was later released and the arrest voided.