Over the past two weeks I have been incessantly asking that people read The New Jim Crow. The book was instrumental in my understanding of the systemic racism very much alive in our justice system, and the way in which our justice system was formed with racist intent from the beginning. I know that seems like a leap to many people, including me 5 years ago, but to that I will simply say again: read the book.
Pertaining to the Eric Garner case where an officer used a chokehold to subdue a man to death in NYC, there is a lot of helpful background information that author Michelle Alexander provides about this once standard maneuver, and the legal action that has been attempted to discourage its use. I will post this excerpt in its entirety that I found most helpful to explain why the action that the coroner ruled a homicide yielded no indictment for the officer who perpetrated the violent act.
The three pages pictured below will hopefully provide insight into why people are taking to the streets over the issue instead of using the system for reform.
So as you can see, it was a virtual impossibility for there to be justice for Eric Garner, or the next person who this happens to. The only way justice can be done is if clamor for it. Hence, the need for protests.