Rev. Al Sharpton bikes for Bell cause
May 31, 2008
BY DAVID HINCKLEY
The Rev. Al Sharpton joined a Critical Mass bike ride through the city Friday night in yet another protest over the Sean Bell verdict.
“Whether you’re fat or skinny, gay or straight, we are all Sean Bell. We are all riding for justice,” he told the crowd in Union Square to enthusiastic applause.
Standing at Sharpton’s side were Bell’s fiance, Nicole Paultre Bell, Bell’s father, William and civil rights attorney Norman Siegel.
After his remarks, Sharpton jumped on a bike and headed west on 14th St. with other cyclists while motorcycle cops watched closely.
Bell’s father drew laughter from those around him, saying, “Justice is nice, but I just wanted to see Rev. Al ride a bike.”
Three city police detectives were acquitted in April in the fatal shooting of Bell, 23, on Nov. 25, 2006, his wedding day.
Sharpton has staged many of the protests to pressure federal officials to try the Bell detectives on civil rights charges.
Critical Mass is a loosely organized monthly bike ride promoting alternative forms of transportation and other causes.