Yesterday May 11th 2010, US Attorney General Eric Holder swung through the Bay Area to visit Youth Uprising in East Oakland. For those outside the Bay Area, Youth Uprising is a state of the art community center located in one of Oakland’s toughest neighborhoods. It’s been an oasis of sorts where folks gather to do everything from learn how to shoot film and make beats on down to taking classes. Everyone from Too Short to Casual of Hiero can be found there working with folks. Over the past couple of years the center has made its mark as to being a ‘go to location’ that many feel should be replicated in other cities.
Apparently Eric Holder heard about the center and wanted to come out here to visit as he and other law enforcement communities are trying to find innovative ways to quell youth violence. Holder came and met with some of the youth from the center as well as stake holders like Oakland police chief Anthony Batts, Mayor Ron Dellums, folks from the probation department, school district and grassroots organizations. Sadly many who wanted to attend, including the community orgs that have been fighting Oakland’s proposed Gang Injunction did not get a chance to get inside.
In any case below are a series of videos documenting the occasion…I got a chance to ask Holder the first question, which centered around ‘How can we solve crime when the police are out and control and the community doesn’t trust them?’ I also asked him about Oakland’s controversial gang injunction. I also got to ask a couple of the youth who met with Holder privately if the issue of police brutality came up..
During the press conference with Holder covered a variety of topics including California legalizing marijuana, Arizona’s harsh immigration law, racial profiling and the war on terror.. Below are clips from the Eric Holder event and press conference…
Clip 1– Attorney General Eric Holder came by Youth Uprising in Oakland to speak with community folks about Youth Violence. He got a tour of the place and then held a press conference. Here he addresses a number of issues. In this clip he weighs in on police brutality, gang injunctions and legalizing marijuana…
Clip-2-Eric Holder addressed a variety of issues including Arizona’s controversial immigration law SB 1070. He said it was divisive and would keep entire communities from working with Law Enforcement. He said the feds are looking to see if it violates Civil Rights laws…
Clip 3– Oakland Police Chief Anthony Batts and Mayor Ron Dellums talked about what they discussed in their meeting and round table with Attorney General Eric Holder. . They talked about getting fed money which would free up city money for social programs.. Chief Batts talked about various methods he wants to employ to stop crime in Oakland..
Clip-4-We spoke w/ Netty & Marcus during yesterday’s (May 11 2010) press conference about their meeting w/ US Attorney general Eric Holder around the issue of ending teen violence. I asked them if police brutality was an issue. They talked about Code 33 which is supposed to help youth and police interact better.. Marcus and Netty spoke about the press always focusing on bad news in Oakland.. They wanted more accountability from the press. They said it hurts people to always see Oakland depicted in a bad light.
Clip-5-During US Attorney General Eric Holder‘s visit to Oakland’s Youth Uprising, Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums and Police Chief Anthony Batts talked about Code 33 which is a program OPD has to better interact with youth.. Chief Batts then talked about the controversial Gang Injunction which he’s has been proposed for North Oakland. I wanted to know how he will balance police suppression and preventive measures..
Mayor Ron Dellums added to the discussion and then directed his concerns about the way Bay Area media often covers Oakland casting the city in a negative light. Dellums reminded the press that their coverage impacts real people and that they should be more mindful..
Clip-6-We caught up w/ Def Poet and community activist Paul Flores who was in attendance when US Attorney General Eric Holder came to Oakland. Holder addressed the issue of Gang Junctions, Immigration and racial profiling.. Paul Flores felt like Holder didn’t come correct.. Here’s his response to Holder’s visit…