On Amir Locke: No More Words...
No more words …
A young Black man, Amir Locke, was killed by Minneapolis police on Wednesday morning, February 2, 2022. Reminiscent of Breonna Taylor, Minneapolis police used a no-knock warrant to silently enter the private residence where he was asleep and they shot and killed Amir. They were looking for someone else.
We have no more words … First, we are still numb and in shock. Second, with the police killings of George Floyd and Daunte Wright, we made statements, quoted Scripture, protested, and called for action. Our colleagues around the country who are speaking out about police killings of Black people, Native people, and other people of color in their communities are also feeling like they have said all that needs to be said already.
We have no more words … Yet Amir’s family needs our prayers.
We have no more words … Yet Black women, many who were Mothers, gathered on Monday to cry out for justice, accountability, and the transformation of public safety. So, we must join these courageous Black women and once again find the words, the Scriptures, the protests, and the actions to demand that the City of Minneapolis account for its racism and incompetence in policing. We must demand from the Mayor of Minneapolis to use his newly gained powers to transform public safety in Minneapolis. And we use the prophet Isaiah’s words to demand, “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed” (1:17).
Minnesota Council of Churches
Presiding Elder Stacey Smith, President
Bishop Richard Howell, Vice President
Rev. Curtiss DeYoung, Chief Executive Officer
Rev. Jim Bear Jacobs, Co-Director of Racial Justice
Rev. Pamela Ngunjiri, Co-Director of Racial Justice
Other MCC Member judicatories and board members have also released statements. Some excerpts from these include
The Christian Church in the Upper Midwest (Disciples of Christ)
The Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the Upper Midwest Anti-Racism/Pro-Reconciliation Team condemns the use of no-knock search warrants. We condemn their use because they have proven to lead to the tragic deaths of people of color. The latest example of their use killing an innocent person of color occurred on Wednesday, February 2, 2022, when the Minneapolis Police Department used a no-knock search warrant to enter a home where Mr. Amir Locke was asleep on a couch and was shot three times by Minneapolis Police.
Bishop Anne Svennungsen, Minneapolis Area Synod ELCA
We pray for all reeling from this re-inflicted trauma and the layers of harm that ripple out from this moment. We pray for the activists and community leaders raising questions and seeking change. We pray for our elected leaders called to courageously work for the reformation of our law enforcement and criminal justice system.
Presbytery of the Twin Cities Area, PCUSA
These words and expressions of deep lamentation and anger, and the cries for justice within our community are a clarion call:
We. Must. Be. Moved.
We must be moved not only by the devastating theft of Amir Locke's life, but also led by the brilliance, joy, and powerful dreaming of Black communities. Black life, Black joy, and Black thriving are so much more than these moments of communal anguish.
Bishop David Bard, United Methodist Church
The killing of Amir Locke, a 22-year-old, by Minneapolis police as they executed a no-knock warrant in the early morning of February 2 is a profound tragedy that evokes deep sadness, lamentation and bitter weeping, and righteous anger. Another Black man is dead—a man who was not named in the warrant, nor a permanent resident of the apartment in which he was killed. Another family is grieving. While I understand that details continue to emerge, how can we say anything except, “This should not have happened.” As followers of Jesus Christ in the Wesleyan tradition, our hearts break and we seek a better way forward.