Pasco protesters speak out against disproportionate sentencing of Black people

PASCO, Wash. — Representatives of the Party for Socialism and Liberation made their voices heard in Pasco on Saturday afternoon.

Protesters met at the intersections of N 20th Ave and W Court St on Saturday to protest the federal execution of Brandon Bernard.

As an organizer for the Party for Socialism and Liberation, Mitchell Malloy was influential in holding the event.

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“What we’re out here challenging is really about the disproportionate effect that these sentencing laws, that these arrests have on the Black community and we just want everybody to better understand that this represents a systemic failure,” Malloy said.

The Party for Socialism and Liberation isn’t a sector of the Black Lives Matter movement. Established in the United States in 2004, the Party for Socialism and Liberation is a group that’s in favor of transforming the country’s capitalist structure into a socialist structure.

In addition to protesting social injustices against the Black community, PSL is active in movements regarding immigrant rights, women’s rights, unionizing labor and averting war.

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Counter-protesters stood across the street from the PSL protest holding signs with phrases like “Brandon was a Murderer” and “BLM Celebrates Evil.”

Bernard was put to death on Dec. 11 for the robbery, kidnapping and murder of Todd and Stacie Bagley in 1999. He was 40 years old at the time of his execution.

Though the movement for social justice reform has progressed steadily over time, the nation’s focus on racial injustice was re-invigorated during the Summer of 2020 with the tragic police-shooters of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.

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