SAMMY

ALERT! Disturbing Content

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By now, if you live in the Greater Toronto Area you’ve seen the amateur video capture of the events that led up to the shooting death of 18 year-old Sammy Yatim. Early Saturday morning (July 27, 2013), police were called to a stopped streetcar on Dundas West in Toronto. There was a knife wielding man on that streetcar which had been vacated by the time police got there. What happens next is absolutely devastating.

By time I joined the demonstration against police brutality on Monday, July 30th, I thought most Torontonians had seen the video. However, I came across West End residents like SCOTT who had not. I offered to show him the video on my iPhone and record his reaction. That’s part of what you’ll see here.

Also at the demonstration was a kind-hearted and gentle man who came up behind the crowd gathered at the memorial and offered candles that he and his friend had brought along with sidewalk chalk. ALARIC spoke passionately about feeling the need to bring a little peace into a volatile situation.

At demonstrations like this – where an entire crowd’s emotions are high and wounds raw, I am made acutely aware of how connected we are. And although the circumstances of this incident point to some of the worst qualities in humans, there were moments when I was pleasantly reminded of our collective grace.

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