Statement from Dr. Jocelynne Rainey on Breaching of U.S. Capitol


January 7, 2021

Yesterday was a clear illustration of how people of color are policed differently than white people. The violent insurrection that struck at the heart of our democracy was a culmination of harmful, racist rhetoric and actions that have been tolerated for too long and evidence of a justice system that denies true justice.

The treatment by a small police force of a large, dangerous mob who illegally stormed and damaged the Capitol in contrast to the treatment of peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters who encountered police in riot gear ready to make arrests and deploy tear gas and rubber bullets is entirely a function of the double standard for white people and people of color in our country.

The time is now to call for justice for Black and brown people who—even in our efforts to call for equal treatment—are far too often jailed and mistreated by people who are meant to enforce the law. We must hold those who enable racist and dangerous rhetoric and those who impede a fair election accountable. We must demand of our new leadership a justice system that does not kill and disproportionately incarcerate Black and brown young men. And we must continue to push back against those who use a false perception of our young people as dangerous to justify mass incarceration while allowing those who try to subvert our democracy to do so without consequence.

Dr. Jocelynne Rainey
President and CEO
Getting Out and Staying Out (GOSO)