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Be The Change

Two days ago, a Mill Valley police officer explained to me why the ‘carotid hold’ was “an appropriate restraint” because it “restricts blood, not airway” and that he was “well qualified in the application of the restraint," like all officers in California. The Colonel spoke rather boastfully about using that method in place of chokeholds or strangleholds, during one of my many calls with law enforcement about police policy here in my hometown to gather information and demand reform, using Campaign Zero tools and the #8CantWait framework.

Yesterday, our Governor Gavin Newsom ordered the state police training program to stop teaching officers how to use that precise neck hold, which blocks the flow of blood to the brain, denouncing it as a “dangerous tact that should not be used by law enforcement.” He pledged to back legislation to ban it altogether is his first action — hopefully of many — on the use of force since George Floyd’s murder at the hands of Minneapolis police and nationwide calls for concrete change and an end to such brutality and violence.

We, the people, can effect change as citizens, we can lobby for legislation, we can hold cops accountable, we can raise our voices, and we can vote for people who fight for justice, black lives and police reform in our cities, states and nation. Make the calls. Send the letters. Write the emails. Hit the streets. Join the meetings. Show up at the polls. Spread the word. Do the work. Be the change. Save lives.

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