Oscar-winning filmmaker Quentin Tarantino joined the peaceful protest against police brutality in New York City this weekend. Tarantino flew into the city from California to march the seven and a half miles on Greenwich Village’s Sixth Avenue as a part of a series of demonstrations organized by the New York group “RiseUpOctober. ”
“I’m a human being with a conscience,” said Tarantino to the crowd of protesters in Washington Square Park. “And if you believe there’s murder going on then you need to rise up and stand up against it. I’m here to say I’m on the side of the murdered.” He explained to the demonstrators that he thinks, too often, that policemen are “murderers.”
There were no arrests at the demonstration, but Patrick Lynch, the head of the cop union, thought Tarantino’s appearance was disgraceful considering his glorification of fictional violence. It was also shortly after the murder of a police officer on the job (Tarantino acknowledged the bad timing) but had been organized months beforehand.
Tarantino, on the other hand, stood his ground and responded: “When I see murders, I do not stand by… I have to call a murder a murder and I have to call the murderers the murderers.”
“The police officers that Quentin Tarantino calls ‘murderers’ aren’t living in one of his depraved big-screen fantasies — they’re risking and sometimes sacrificing their lives to protect communities from real crime and mayhem,” said Lynch in a response.
The protestors seemed to be moved by the appearance of a figure of influence at their demonstration.