Ashanti Hamilton
Press Release

The only path to justice involves peace and patience

Statement of President Ashanti Hamilton August 15, 2016

By - Aug 15th, 2016 05:26 pm

For generations, Milwaukee has been a city crying out for justice. But there is no justice in a mob scene, and the time is now to come together as a city and peacefully reflect on our problems instead of inciting more of them.

Accordingly, I’m calling on every Milwaukeean to practice nonviolence and restraint in the nights ahead. If you feel the need to make your voice heard, I would expect you to do it peacefully, and to obey the lawful orders of the police officers charged with protecting our lives and our property.

There is a process for investigating the police-involved shooting that precipitated this weekend’s unrest, and I would ask our residents to withhold their judgment until they have learned more of the facts in this matter. I am told there is body camera footage of the shooting, and that when it is shared, it will bring additional facts to light. We are pushing to expedite the release of this video and these facts as much as possible.

Make no mistake about it, the frustration and the anger that we’ve seen expressed—sometimes violently—are very real, and so are the disparities that created them. Our city is home to neighborhoods full of kids and young people who feel trapped without opportunity, without hope and without role models. They see a world that’s passing them by because of where they were born and the color of their skin.

We have struggled for too long just to begin to rebuild our city, and we will not stand by and let violence and incivility tear it all down again. The sort of unchecked rage and destruction we have witnessed these past two nights hasn’t put us any closer to finding solutions for our problems. Hurling bricks through windows doesn’t fix anything, but picking those bricks up and building something, as a community, might. I hope my neighbors will join me in seeking a peaceful solution to our problems.

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One thought on “The only path to justice involves peace and patience”

  1. Barb-West Bend says:

    Thank you, Mr. Hamilton, for your thoughtful and hearfelt statement.

    “Freedoms just another word for nothing left to lose.” Rage is a reaction to living with no hope of ever succeeding in life, or of getting justice. Slum landlords abuse their tenants, and authorities that could do something about this situation give a slap on the wrist to those heartless, greedy, scheming, manipulative, lowlife owners…who are then allowed to buy more properties to continue to scam the system. Where are the needed jobs, safe, decent, affordable housing? Children need to achieve a basic education to have hope for the future? It seems like the preferred solution is to build more costly prisons. Are Wisconsin’s liberal gun laws, with easy access to guns, complicating life for those living in Milwaukee? I live in a district where our Representative encourages the good guys with guns to go into the city and “take out the scum bags.” Are the majority of those who voted for this man in agreement with his statement? None has taken him up on his suggestion. How do comments like his help anything or anybody? We need our well trained, respected police officers, and we need a public who believes justice will be served when situations go bad.

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