Another reason Chinatown needs to be part of City Council District 2

City Council District 2September 12, 2017- Margaret Chin skipped the debates, ran for an illegal third-term, and still won the primaries for City Council District 1. Aaron Foldenaur, a candidate that defeated all of the others by a wide margin in our poll, which was biased towards non-Chinatown regions, lost badly.

The residents of Tribeca, SoHo, FiDi, the Seaport, and BPC are not being represented properly as long as the lower East Side and Chinatown is part of District 1.

February 21, 2016- We have previously reported on how members of the Chinese-American community have wanted their city council district to be merged with District 2, which is the Lower East Side.

In the news now, “At least 10,000 people, many of them Chinese Americans, crammed into Cadman Plaza in Downtown Brooklyn yesterday afternoon to protest the treatment of former NYPD officer Peter Liang, who was found guilty of second-degree manslaughter two weeks ago.

Protesters piled into vans and subways beginning Saturday morning in Chinatowns across the city. Yonghon Tan, a Chinese American in her thirties, took the R train from Elmhurst after the van she’d lined up for was too full to accommodate any more passengers.

“When I heard the result, I started reading the newspaper and looking up what actually happened,” Tan told Gothamist while on the subway platform. “I think it’s unfair to put a rookie in the most unsafe place in the city. Then, after the shooting, the NYPD abandoned him. The NYPD should be held accountable just as much as he is for what happened.”

Liang shot and killed 28-year-old Akai Gurley in the dark stairwell of East New York’s Pink Houses in November of 2014.

Many in the crowd lashed out against a criminal justice system they perceive as biased against minorities. While Liang, a rookie sent to a housing project deemed “one of the most dangerous in the city,” was found guilty and is facing serious jail time, NYPD officers like Daniel Pantaleo, who choked Eric Garner to death on a Staten Island sidewalk in 2014, never get indicted.

“We understand the pain among our African-American brothers and sisters, who have witnessed the killing of one unarmed black man after another in continuous succession, with no prosecutions against the officers,” former City Comptroller John Liu, told the raucous crowd. “That is a great injustice.”

Away from the speakers at the northern end of the park, supporters of the verdict, including Hortencia Peterson, the aunt of Akai Gurley, stood in front of a large “Black Lives Matter” banner, and faced near-relentless aggression and derogatory language from those who had come to protest Liang’s treatment.

After earlier scuffles, where Liang supporters had apparently ripped up a sign belonging to them, the supporters of the verdict were moved to a median in the middle of the street by the NYPD, completely surrounding them on all sides by the protestors.

“Peter Liang shouldn’t have been allowed to kill anybody, it’s wrong,” Najieb Isaac, a supporter of the verdict and member of the group Why Accountability, which focuses on the prosecution of police misconduct, shouted across the street to the opposing protesters. “And if you’re standing for that, you’re standing for the wrong thing. You should be standing against police brutality and murder.”

Members of CAAAV, an advocacy group in New York allied against police violence that works with Asian immigrants, who have stood with the Gurley family since the immediate aftermath of the shooting, raised their arms and chanted “which side are you on?” in solidarity with Gurley’s aunt. The group has had several threats made against them since the verdict.

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