The Rev. Shonda Nicole Gladden | Indianapolis Star
Sept. 27, 2020
Her name was Breonna Taylor.
She was young and kind, and at 26, had so much life left to live. She wanted the same things that most of us do: to own a home, raise a family and be a part of a community that is safe and welcoming. She filled her home with tiny sticky notes detailing her dreams and planned for the day she would become a mom.
But on March 13, Breonna was killed by the very system sworn to protect her. That same system once again turned its back on her and denied her the one thing it had left to give: justice. None of the law enforcement officers involved in Breonna’s death will face charges for her death. This atrocity will go unanswered and, once again, those sworn to uphold our system of justice are instead held immune from it.
That’s unacceptable, and we cannot let it keep happening. That’s why, in Indianapolis, there is a bill, Proposal 237, that would restore democracy in law enforcement – and we need your help. Stand with us by urging the Indianapolis City-County Council to pass this co-governance bill, which would add civilians to a board that helps determine policies of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.
Let’s be clear: Any system that continuously exempts an elite few from accountability is a system that has failed. Over and over again, the very law enforcement officers sworn to protect us instead target, beat and kill Black and brown members of our community with little to no accountability. The justice system failed Breonna Taylor because it was designed to fail her – and to protect the men who killed her.
So yes, we must all say her name, over and over again – but we must also do everything within our power to change the system that killed her.
That starts with ensuring that law enforcement is held accountable to the communities they serve and that the community has a seat at the table when law enforcement policies are being designed.
We’re doing just that in Indianapolis, with the co-governance bill, which would ensure that law enforcement is held accountable to the same system that every other municipal agency is held.
The Rev. Shonda Nichole Gladden is CEO of Good to the Soul and a member of Faith in Indiana.