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The 555th West Wednesday: Long live the fight for Tyrone West

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29 March 2024 174 hits

BALTIMORE, MD, March 13- The West Wednesday Coalition (WC) marched and held a rally at Baltimore City Hall and the Baltimore City Police (BPD) headquarters against racist police terror. The night was in honor of Tyrone West and all victims of state-sanctioned police brutality. This makes 555 Wednesdays which the coalition has tirelessly dedicated to calling out the fake liberal bosses and their politricks—as they were described by WC. Nine members of Progressive Labor Party and 3 friends of the Party attended. We led sharp political chants and distributed our newspaper CHALLENGE to enthusiastic attendees. 

It’s now been over 10 years since 17 killer KKKops murdered Tyrone West and then covered it up. “… [T]wo plain-clothes officers in an unmarked car pulled Tyrone over in a residential neighborhood for an alleged minor traffic infraction. Witness statements indicated that he was pulled out of his car and attacked by the police. Several residents and witnesses in the neighborhood where this happened tried to intervene and were told by one of the officers (Bernardez-Ruiz) to ‘back the f— up’ and go into their houses or the same thing would happen to them (westcoalition.com).” Baltimore City government has passed lackluster reforms over the last 10 years, but the killer pigs in blue have still not been put behind bars. 

Tyrone West deserves to be here, among his family and friends, creating more of his beautiful art and inspiring others to care for one another. But the BPD took that away—a man who was the light of his sister’s life. Tyrone, like many working-class people, is a testament to the underappreciated and long-ignored beauty in a city that is victim to a criminally vile system founded on the historic oppression of working-class people of color. 

But the movement is still strong! It’s become increasingly militant! 

While a few workers who spoke promoted working within the system to enact substantial change for workers, the majority blamed capitalism for police terror, and many even called for a revolution. Speeches pointed to our need for multiracial unity against the cops and their crooked institutions. They may terrorize Black and Brown workers at drastically high rates, but they terrorize our white class siblings, too. One strength of our rally was pointing out the connection between police terror and imperialist war. During the speakout, a worker called out Baltimore City’s fascist funding of the genocide in Palestine, pointing out that the Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) butchers have been working in tandem with Baltimore City counterparts to learn new tactics for terrorizing workers into submission in this period of developing fascism.

With the Party’s help, the coalition has become more anti-capitalist, but we are continuing to sharpen the struggle against police terror. A comrade argued that workers all over the world need to join together, that the struggle against genocides in Palestine, Congo, Myanmar, and abroad is our struggle too, and that we need a society ruled by and for the workers—communism!