Speech at the Demonstration from the Campaign Justice for Mohamed on 15th August 2020
Many of you have probably heard, that Mohamed Idrissi was shot by police officers in Gröpelingen on 18th June. Many of you probably know, that we have founded the campaign „Justice for Mohamed“ to indict the murder of Mohamed Idrissi. We are a coalition of different civil society and anti-racist groups and relatives of Mohamed Idrissi.
But maybe you don‘t know exactly why we startet this campaign. So we want to explain today, why we insist on unveiling the truth about what happend on 18th June in Gröpelingen. And: We want to promote to join the campaign.
Thus, I will answer two questions today: Why do we speak of justice? And: Why are you our addressees?
As campaign „Justice for Mohamed“ we have set two basic aims: Firstly, we want justice. Secondly, we want to ensure, that something like this will not happen again – that nevermore a person is being murdered by the police.
And both – meaning justice and „never again!“ – are connected directly. Because we won‘t achieve justice if we can‘t elucidate, how the fatal shots by the police happend. We won‘t achieve justice if we don‘t unveil the truth, if we don‘t raise awareness about what exactly the problem is constituted of.
To anticipate it: The problem is not only, that four police officers cornered Mohamed in his backyard, that the situation completly escalated and that they shot him in the end. The mistake lies – as so often – in statist structures and societal mechanisms, that initially made this homicide possible. As a result, many people are in denial of this violent structures and their consequences. Mohamed‘s death steps in a tragical row of more than 160 migrants, People of Color and Black people brought to death in some way or other by german police since 1990. Only expressing this truth publically and elucidating this murder, can gurantee something like this to not happen again. Only by doing so, we can achieve justice.
When speaking about „murder“, we don‘t mean simple „revenge“, of course. We know: Neither the – unlikely – possibility of convicting the police officers being responsible for Mohamed‘s death, nor their take over of responsibility that until today didn‘t happen anywhere, will bring Mohamed back into life.
But we also now: It‘s the power relationship in our society in which a life like Mohamed‘s isn‘t valued equally than other peoples‘ lifes. Power relationships revealing, that human dignity of some people isn‘t regarded equally, compared to dignity of others.
We want to make these conditions visible and point out on them – we impeach this violent conditions!
Mohamed migrated to Bremen many years ago, he was unemployed, he lived in a „poor“ neighbourhood, he wasn‘t young any more and he was mentally ill. Most likely, some of these factors apply for many of the 160 humans being killed by police within the last 30 years.
We live in a society in which many people face discrimination in various ways. Daily racism and institutionalized racism is one of them. Many people are thrusted on the margins of society and are
forced to live under bad undeserving conditions. That‘s how problems are created, that‘s how existing problems are exacerbated.
Many people neither have the possibilites, nor the privilege, of those being counted to white majority society. Many marginalized, so to say people „on the margins“, are put in a special danger – be it through violent normality, be it their lifes are regarded less valueable, or be it, that they become a target of police brutality or even fatal shots by the police. And often enough even after their deaths, their lifes are not being seen equally, their killings are regarded as „unimportant“ or they are even buried in oblivion.
But we don‘t want to and we won‘t forget compared to the majority in this country. We want, that every single person can live in freedom and dignity with the same rights in this society – that‘s the origin of our campaign. „Justice for Mohamed!“
Now concerning the second question: Why are you our addressees, why do we approach you?
You are our addressees because in our opinion neither the state nor public institutions are our main counterparts, as the main task of public institutions is „protecting“ the existing order.
Statial structures like parliaments, polices, justice, administration – they all aim to maintain the described violent power relationships. To maintain them with all the discrimination, dreprivation of rights and oppression, including brutal police violence – ultimatedly at all costs.
Therefore, those people having a free and liberal consciousness and advocating for dignity of all humans are the focus group of our campaign. Thereby, we mainly refer to those who are – for different reasons – thrusted to the margins of society or are threatend to get so. We refer to those who are threatend by violent conditions, to those who suffer most from consequences of discrimination and structural violence. Because those are, we are, the ones having good reasons to oppose all forms of injustice – because they, as we, can only profit from changing society.
And of course, we refer to the ones from majority society being aware of their unjustified privileges. The ones kowing that „freedom“ can only mean freedom of all. The ones knowing that defending this freedom means fighting for freedom of all people.
That‘s why our campaign invites everybody, meaining liberally thinking people and especially the ones being affected by discrimination and oppression, to not be content with less than the truth. We invite you to struggle for justice, freedom and equal rights. Because these are the most important elements of society – they are not being donated to us, but we have to contend successfully for them in a long process together.
The campaign Justice for Mohamed Idrissi is part of this fight. That‘s why your place is not on the side of those „protecting“ and administrating the existing violent conditions.
Your place is here with us!
Because they can break one finger – but they can‘t break a fist!