We felt it was imperative to show this VICE News Video to you so that you can more clearly understand the communities we work in, the struggles they face, and the work we are trying to do to help solve some of these problems.
These images are distressing, so please take caution when sharing. Whilst it seems an impossibly different world to ours, this is the daily reality for our local leaders and our 200 ACE Projects Students.
This video is bloody because the police brutality is bloody. The police are fighting a war on gangs, but the boundaries between gang members and civilians is increasingly blurred. The power of the police to end the lives of innocents is currently going unchecked and unpunished. We are only a tiny voice, speaking up to a dominant chorus of politicians. But the more people who listen to us and others who are calling out this injustice, the more chance we have of protecting those who are being persecuted.
This year, Rio De Janeiro has seen:
A 17 percent increase in police killings since January.
More than 1000 people have died.
Helicopters fly snipers over the favela, taking potshots at whoever they like.
Families surround the bodies of loved ones who have been shot so that the site cannot be tampered with, drugs and weapons are planted on bodies to justify killings.
“Many innocent people die in war”
Civilian casualties are always a problem in war. They are people who are inadvertently in the wrong place at the wrong time. However, there is a difference between accidental killings and mass targeting of communities, without the necessary intel that separates the dangerous from the harmless.
“We aim to neutralize their unjust aggression”, claim the police. We must invert this madness, and neutralize the unjust aggression of the state. Politicians who back a militarized police force with a license to kill are putting the lives of millions at risk, as the state-sanctioned killings affect innocents in every quarter.
Please take a moment to digest this, share this, and remember all those who are suffering from an injustice we can scarcely comprehend. Human beings are not cockroaches, as Bolsonaro titles them. Human beings are people with the right to life. We have a duty to protect that right.
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