“Everywhere I go, I’m profiled whether I like it or not,” said nineteen-year-old organizer, Oluwatoyin “Toyin” Salau during a protest for Tony McDade, a black trans man lynched by the pigs earlier this month. Oluwatoyin was declared missing on June 6th She was found murdered – a victim of a double homicide on Saturday.
Salau was alive in surveillance tape footage at an ice cream shop four days after she was reported missing. That same day, Salau tweeted a detailed description of a man who had assaulted her earlier in the morning. Many people replied to the tweet reaching out to help. She never responded. The man she described murdered her shortly after she sent the tweet.
The suspect, Aaron Glee Jr., has since been arrested and charged with homicide.
The Tallahassee Community Action Committee organized a social media campaign after Salau was declared missing on June 6th. They also organized the search party to look for her on June 10th.
The murder of yet another African woman – and the failure to prevent it– must be put into historical context. Aaron Glee Jr. has a history of aggravated assault against African women. According to friends, Salau herself had a history of being brutalized by sex traffickers. Neither of these facts are coincidental; they are the outcome of centuries of colonial terrorism eating away at the social fabric of colonized communities.
Did the pigs lift a finger to find Salau when she went missing? Nah.
Did the pigs protect her from any of her traffickers? Hell nah.
Did the pigs release Aaron Glee Jr. from prison thinking he would no longer assault women?
No the fuck they did not.
Prisons don’t exist to rehabilitate. They exist to prop up white power capitalism with free labor. Pigs are herded into colonized communities to force our colonized people to rely on white nationalist institutions in place of direct community organization. There was no community organization to pull Oluwatoyin Salau from the sex trafficking houses to which the state turned a blind eye. There was no collective community institution to hold Aaron Glee Jr. accountable for assaulting colonized women.
It was, however, the poor and working class, colonized people in Tallahassee that organized a search party for missing African women. That is because organized community control is the only weapon that poor and working class colonized people have against our mass murder.
Black lives only matter once Black Power matters. It is the pigs terrorizing our communities that makes that power so difficult to organize without fear of violent retaliation.
Even though it was Aaron Glee Jr., an African man, who murdered Salau, it was the pigs’ occupation of the community–by the white nationalist state – that made an organized community response in her defense so difficult.
It would have taken organized leadership of the Colonized working poor to answer the history of violence that profiled Salau for the whole of her young life. When setting our sights on justice, we must aim high. The colonizers who uphold this system are just as responsible for this murder as Glee himself.
Don’t let sellout rats in the electoral system confuse you. Don’t let our message get watered down. Protest not only on police brutality alone, protest the rape against our sisters across the World!
Colonialism is a global system. All institutions are paved with the blood of the colonized. They must be destroyed and the people who defend these parasites be marked as enemies of the people. Period. As Oluwatoyin said in that same rebellion for Tony McDade, “Y’all need to remember who the enemy is.”
Rest in power, Oluwatoyin. We will do more than say your name. We will take back control of our lands, lives, and resources. We will see freedom in our lifetime.