Democratic Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders promised Sandra Bland’s family that he would “say her name” at the debates, and this week that is exactly what he did.
Houston-area pastor Rev. Hannah Adair Bonner, along with Bland’s sister Shante Needham, and Bland’s mother Geneva Reed-Veal say that Sanders told them over dinner at the East Street Cafe, a Thai restaurant in Washington D.C.’s Union Station, that he would bring Sandra up by name.
The hashtag #SayHerName became widespread throughout social media after Bland’s death. Simply naming the victims of police brutality and murder became and act of rebellion against not only the police but the mainstream media who so often phrases headlines such as: “Woman Found Dead In Jail Cell, After Traffic Arrest”.
The encounter between Bland’s family and Sanders took place on Thursday, October 8, according to Yahoo News. That was only five days before the first Democratic debate, which took place in Las Vegas, Nevada last week.
“What happened to your daughter is inexcusable,” Sanders told Bland’s mother. “We are broken, and this has exposed us.”
Bland’s family and friends say that they asked for a picture with Sanders.
“He did not impose upon Ms. Geneva to ask for a picture of his own,” Bonner said. “He did not use the moment as an opportunity to promote his campaign. He took no record, he made no statement. He did not try to turn it into a publicity stunt.”
On Tuesday, when Anderson Cooper askedthe five Democratic presidential candidates about the #BlackLivesMa..., Sanders referred to Sandra by name.
“Black lives matter,” he responded. “The reason those words matter is the African-American community knows that on any given day, some innocent person like Sandra Bland can get into a car and then three days later she’s going to end up dead in jail.”
What do you think of Bernie Sanders? Does he have a chance to win? Will it make any difference if he does?