Rally at Benson Park tackles rights, police

Organizers plan for 'peaceful demonstration'
Posted at 12:18 PM, Jul 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-13 13:26:36-04

For Kim Sherrod-Nichols, the movement against police brutality nationwide does not involve “all lives.”

“Absolutely not,” she says Tuesday while at Benson Park. “Why change it? To accommodate those who don't want to say it, just to make them feel like they're involved? No. Black Lives Matter. Period.”

Benson Park will be the site of a rally she is organizing, along with activists Dale Carter and Robert Wagner, Wednesday at 4 p.m.

Sherrod-Nichols and Carter say they are not part of the Black Lives Matter movement, but do believe in the slogan.

“Having rallies is definitely a benefit, but ultimately the end result is making sure that we have some of these young people that are coming up now to be able to sit at the table,” she says.

The rally comes more than a week after police shot and killed two black men in Louisiana and Minnesota and will focus on voter registration, understanding your rights and how to interact with law enforcement, Carter says.

Also on the agenda list: understanding the policies of the Omaha Police Department, including cross cultural training.

“We're talking about cross cultural training where you learn how to work with  the African American community,” Carter says. “[Understand] you fight things you don't understand. When you don't dig deeper into the culture, you don't really understand it. You'll come into it hostile every time.”

Unlike the Black Lives Matter rally held Friday, Sherrod-Nichols and Carter say they neither plan to chant nor shut down the streets as seen elsewhere. They say they plan to hold a peaceful demonstration and invited officers from the Northwest Precinct with Omaha police to join them.

But after we spoke to them on Tuesday about the rally planned for Wednesday, we came across a graphic flyer. On it, there is a target aimed on a young black boy with a still photo behind him capturing the last moments of Sterling’s encounter with Baton Rouge police before he died.

On Wednesday morning, just hours before the planned rally, Carter explains.

“I wanted the truth on the flyer. I think we have switched the narrative so many times, we have lost the original reason on why we need to come to the table.”

The flyer was made before a sniper shot and killed five Dallas officers, he says.

“We [have] made it about black against white, black against blue,” he says. “We've made it ‘us’ against ‘them.’ It's just all kinds of ways – that we have been distracted by the original cause, that two men lost their lives because procedures weren't followed properly.”

To learn more about the rally, click here.