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Baltimore Celebrates ‘Nobody Kill Anybody’ Weekend. Yes, Seriously.

“Monday, Monday, Can’t Trust That Day …”

A Baltimore woman is spearheading an effort for the violent city of Baltimore to eschew killing over the weekend. Along with other activists, Erricka Bridgeford, whose stepson and brother were murdered, is taking to the streets with flyers urging people to have a “Nobody Kill Anybody” weekend.

If that works, Monday should be interesting.

As NBC News points out, “Although it has less than a tenth of New York City’s population, Baltimore has suffered 48 more homicides in 2017, according to police statistics. The Maryland city’s murder rate is also on the rise, 20 percent higher compared to the same period last year.”

Bridgeford told NBC News, “We didn’t come up with anything that was brand new but we just had to make a decision that we could at least try.”

Some gang leaders and members pledged to hold off on killing until at least Monday.

Although police and city government told NBC News they want to support the movement, Bridgeford insisted she didn’t want their help. Why? Because the people of Baltimore don’t trust them, she said. She added, “You don’t have to be woke very long in America, especially if you’re a person of color, to notice that there are certain parts of the city that get resources that yours don’t.”

The Baltimore Police Department (BPD) is 42% black; in 2015 more than half of the force was non-white, either black, Hispanic, Asian or Native American. Over 60% of the incumbents at the highest command levels came from from minority communities. 54% of the command leadership came from minority groups.

BPD spokesman T.J. Smith told NBC News, “At the end of the day we all want the same thing. We want officers to do what they’re expected to do, and the community wants officers to do what they’re expected to do. But we also all want people to stop harming each other, especially with guns.”

Last year, a Department of Justice report concluded the police department had permitted conduct that violated the Constitution and federal law.

Jonathan Smith, former chief of the Justice Department’s Special Litigation Section of the Civil Rights Division, took issue with Bridgeford’s rejection of the police. He stated, “This is a real opportunity for dialogue with police to occur and address ways that policing creates circumstances for violence. There are many neighborhoods in Baltimore that are over-policed and under-served. Kids are being swept off the streets at the same time that you can’t solve a homicide because you can’t get anyone to talk about what they saw.”

Bridgeford confessed, “We don’t think this is a cure. We don’t think this will even necessarily stop violence that weekend, but we know that some people have made promises that they won’t, and that just might save somebody’s life.”

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