With the Tsarnaev trial going on, I am surprised that I am barely seeing any discussion of the killing & intimidation by the FBI of key witnesses, or of the overblown city-wide militarized lockdown of our entire metropolitan area in April 2013.
The citizens of Boston are in the position to say today that neither will we be terrorized by a few heartless criminals, nor will we intimidated by our own government.
Those of us who listened to the Serial podcast heard how readily the state pursued a lifetime conviction of a Pakistani American man with a case that was utterly baseless and self-contradictory. Today the Federal Government explains away the death of a Chechen American witness through various contradictory accounts and an unwillingness to release autopsy reports.
A few weeks ago I joined many other BMGers and Boston citizens to march for hours in protest of militarized police violence, institutionalized racism, and lack of law enforcement accountability. It seems to me that few recognize the connection between Michael Brown and Ibragim Todashev. Granted, our country’s racist treatment towards people who are black has a much longer history. The current unconstitutional treatment of suspected terrorists and their colleagues is a newer phenomenon. But the issues are linked – our law enforcement exploits our fear in order to act with more and more impunity.
We mustn’t be silent on this topic. Today’s trial is an opportunity to speak up and say that we will not let fear rule this city. We demand accountability and transparency.