Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Amadou Diallo's Memory in the New York Times

Woke up this morning to a haunting image of Mamadou Diallo and his young son walking by a mural of his deceased cousin Amadou Diallo. Amadou Diallo was mercilessly shot by the NYPD as he reached for his wallet in an attempt to placate the undercover cop's demands. More than once, because of this event, I have told my son, "If an officer stops you - Promise me, you always be polite. And that you'll never. never run away. Promise that you'll always keep your hands in sight." I stood up against the stage as Springsteen and the E-Street band sang these words in Bruce's homage to Diallo - "American Skin" - during the "Rising" tour. Clarence Clemons' face was streaked with tears as he intoned the refrain "41 shots".

Enricsalas' YouTube video is a poignant mash-up of Springsteen and the E-Street Band's brave rendition from a series of concerts in Madison Square Garden, that some members of the NYPD naively picketed, overlayed with footage of the events around the shooting. In my estimation, then NYC mayor, Rudy Giuliani destroyed any chance of a real shot at the White House with his feeble attempts to explain away the horrific event.

Today's story in the New York Times is a must read: Diallo Cousin Still Fights for a Foothold

photo by Oscar Hidalgo/The New York Times
"Mamadou Diallo, taking his son Abdul, 3, to day care, passes a mural near their Bronx home that is dedicated to the memory of their cousin Amadou Diallo."

I painted a small work in memory of the loved one's Diallo left behind: "American Beauty":

Gregg Chadwick
"American Beauty"
11"x11" oil on linen 2004


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