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    12.11.14 BLS Students Organize “Die-In”
    Brooklyn Law School - Die-in event December 11 2014

    At noon on Dec. 11, 2014, over four-dozen Brooklyn Law School students held a "die-in" in the school's courtyard to protest the non-indictments of the police officers responsible for the deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner.

    The die-in (a demonstration in which a gathering of people lie down as if dead) lasted for 4 minutes and 30 seconds to symbolize the 4 1/2 hours Michael Brown was left on the street after he was shot in Ferguson, MO. Student die-ins have taken place in recent weeks in high schools, colleges and universities across the country and world.

    A coalition of BLS students planned the event to give their classmates an opportunity to express their opposition to the grand juries' decisions in both cases and support for a justice system that better protects lives in communities of color, and in particular, the lives of black men.

    Janeen Hall, a student and President of the Black Law Students Association, stated: "I was contacted by fellow students about their concerns and reactions to the lack of indictments. There was a strong urge to figure out a way to express the many pent up emotions surrounding the killings of unarmed black men by police. We approached the administration and received their support for a demonstration by a diverse representation of students here at Brooklyn Law School. Today's die-in gave students a chance to release some of the many emotions they have been experiencing, in a peaceful way. It also showed students that they have a community of support here at school. However, many students have more to say about what they believe to be a fault in our justice system. I hope that from today's event, BLS students connect with each other as we continue to stand up for what we think is right. Many of us came to law school to effect change, and it's amazing that we don't have to wait until we graduate and pass the bar to do so."

    Eric Eingold, one of the student organizers of the event, stated: "Over the past few weeks, die-ins have taken place all over the world to express solidarity with people fighting for justice in Ferguson and Staten Island. Today's event allowed the Brooklyn Law School Community to express our collective sorrow and anger at our society's failure to protect the lives of people of color from police violence, and to declare that we want justice. Brooklyn is in many ways ground zero when it comes to police violence. Just last week an unarmed black men, Akai Gurley, was killed by an on-duty police officer. If there are federal civil rights charges brought regarding the Eric Garner prosecution, the case will be heard in the federal courthouse five minutes away from school at the Eastern District of New York. For those reasons, we felt it was important to host this event even though we are all swamped and overwhelmed during exam period."

    Dean Nicholas Allard said of the gathering: "Our law students are fully engaged in the world around them. A big part of their motivation to become lawyers is not just to do well, but to do good. We respect and admire their expressions of empathy and concern about racial justice, and about community and police relations. I was deeply moved by the thoughtful, respectful way our students who engaged in their own 'die-in' made their point."