NorthBorosNews.com

North Boroughs’ Pastors and Residents Unite to March for Equal Justice and Police Protection

Avalon, PA - On Saturday, July 7th six men from a self-proclaimed “white nationalist” organization threatened and beat a local man in an Avalon bar. No arrests were made and after 11 days, mere misdemeanor citations were issued. The assault was racially motivated as evidenced by the fact that the attackers called out racial slurs before attacking the man. A group of pastors from the North Boroughs have decided to stand up against hatred and violence in our neighborhood. These pastors and other members of the faith community want to publicly denounce racism, hate, violence, and inaction and expose them as unbiblical. We strongly believe that when something like this happens in our community, there must be a clear response. In these circumstances, apathetic silence is complicity, so we are making a statement that racial violence will not be tolerated.  

We view this unfortunate situation as an opportunity to examine the policies and procedures of local law enforcement and to ensure that all of our citizens are protected by the law. We have joined forces with community members, both within and outside of our churches, to assemble for this cause. We are asking questions of our borough leadership to determine the source of delayed and inadequate justice: whether the problem was insufficient policies or a failure to enforce existing policies. We want to call for accountability in our policing. Inaction from the authorities and the community disenfranchises people.  This leads to mistrust, alienation, increased tensions, and may even cause some to take matters into their own hands. We don't want anyone in the North Boroughs to be terrorized and left vulnerable by those sworn to protect them. By speaking up now, we hope to create a better community dialogue and prevent further violence. We are not protesting against the police, but we are refusing to be complicit in injustice and calling for honesty and accountability.

On Tuesday, August 21st at 5:30pm, we will begin a peaceful march from the Bellevue Borough building to the Avalon Borough building to raise awareness that racial violence and intimidation has happened in our community and that it must not be tolerated. We will share the written responses of the two boroughs to our questions and provide an opportunity for each borough to make a public statement so that, as a community, we can continue to call for fair and sufficient protection of ALL citizens in our neighborhood. Our march is called “Protect us North Boros” because we want everyone in the North Boroughs to be protected from intimidation and violence. When justice is not equally administered, we believe it is our civic and Christian duty to hold people accountable and call for change.

Please note that the inception of this march has stemmed from a deep-seated belief that ALL people are made in the image of God and have innate dignity and value; however, this is not a Christian-specific march. We do not require any participant to have any particular beliefs or values except those that inspire one to respectfully and peacefully pursue justice and denounce denigration of anyone, including police officers. In addition, this is not an exclusive march for those who consider themselves community activists or “justice warriors.” This march is open to all who are willing to peacefully walk and affirm that what happened at the Jackman Inn should never happen again.

For more information about our efforts, please join the facebook group “Protect Us North Boros” or email us at protectusnorthboros@gmail.com. Even if you cannot march that day, you can join in our activism and spread awareness by posting your support to @protectusnorthboros or by using the following hashtags: #protectusnorthboros #nohatenorthboros