Peter Yew/Police Brutality Protestz, 1975
In April 1975, Peter Yew, a young Chinese-American living in New York City’s Chinatown, asked police to stop beating a 15-year-old whom they had stopped for a traffic violation. For his concern, Yew was savagely beaten right on the spot, taken back to the police station, stripped, beaten again and arrested on charges of resisting arrest and assault on a police officer.
His beating was the last straw as 15,000 Chinatown community members took to the streets to fight back against police attacks and brutality against their community. Virtually every shop and factory in Chinatown was closed on May 19th for the demonstration and signs reading “Closed to Protest Police Brutality” were put in windows and on doors. The community united around demands for the dismissal of all charges against Yew, an end to discrimination of the Chinese community, and an end to discrimination in employment, housing, education, health, and…
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