Houston Justice Coalition in the Age of the Millennial
By Graham Maio
There is a giant burning ball of hot passionate energy I am sensing in the millennial generation in Houston, TX. This enormous, glowing, ball of energy is enveloping Houston and demanding better human rights, and changes in government policies on a progressive level. I believe I first noticed this bright round ball seeking change after Mike Brown was killed by Officer Darryl Wilson in Ferguson, MO and the subsequent refusal of a Grand Jury to indict Officer Wilson on charges of murder. In Houston, the flames from that ball burst open and streaked into every street and alley of H-Town screaming, “Black Lives Matter” and “No Justice, No Peace”. But after the sign waving, and bravely facing and staring down a dismissive and impolite Houston Police Department, the question was: Where do we go from here? Like so many protestors who participated in the initial Houston “Black Lives Matter” movement, I wondered if the movement would lose steam or keep on charging albeit in a more structured manner.
Fortunately my attention was called to an upcoming Town Hall discussion about police brutality here in Houston, which promised to bring forth several proposals for plans of action to change the HPD system. This was my introduction to the Houston Justice Coalition, a grassroots organization which put together the Town Hall event. This coalition was created and is currently spearheaded by three remarkable African Americans of the millennial age; Durrel K. Douglas, Shekira C. Dennis, and Damien T. Jones. These three leaders took the “Black Lives Matter” movement, nurtured it, and let it blossom into their coalition’s rallying cry of “Less Talk, More Action”. “Less Talk, More Action” says let’s get more people of color to register to vote and sign up to be on Houston Grand Juries. “Less Talk, More Action” says, “let’s introduce a proposal to Houston City Council demanding that every HPD officer wear a body camera. For each step of the way, for every challenge and success, the Houston Justice Coalition has invited the everyday person to join in the discussion and be a part of this very important fight.