PATERSON, NJ - The Community Charter School of Paterson (CCSP) presented their Law Day 2021 poetry night event Thursday with more than 100 students, educators and community leaders participating. 

In opening remarks CCSP CEO Curtis Palmore offered his gratitude to those attending the celebration of Law Day 2021.“Who is going to be that champion of Justice,” Palmore asked. “We’ve seen before our own eyes throughout the summer and the last several weeks, when young people, people of color, people of all races - when we stand up to systematic inequality we can change things…to the youth here tonight...use the things from now and beyond to be a champion of justice. My charge is to you, let’s do this for our communities and our families and we can make the world a better place.”

Also participating in the celebration was Talena Lachelle Queen, Paterson’s first Poet Laureate. “It’s been really fantastic to see all these young voices to chime up and speak,” Queen said of her experiencing working with Paterson youth in her role. “I had the opportunity to share some of your student’s voices in Montclair and they were in awe.” 

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While audience members were invited to participate in an interactive word cloud to express their definitions of the word law they were also presented with a pre-recorded video by Mayor Andre Sayegh who offered that a just and orderly society is necessary so that all people can be treated fairly. 

CCSP students were the main attractions of the evening, several presenting videos and visual artwork. These include Leon who work “No Violence” features an AK-45 behind a red prohibition sign surrounded by the locations where mass shootings have taken place. 

This was followed by Natalie who submitted a video in which she shared her belief that “no one should be above the law.” 

“If you’re an important person, let me just tell you, a person who admires you and you break a law, they’re going to think that it’s okay to break a law,” Natlie explained. “You’re taking advantage of the power you have. You should really care about what you’re doing because that’s not okay.” 

The event also featured visual artworks based on law, activism, and women’s rights on mediums such as collage, canvas, digital art, poster boards, and included interviews and pre-recorded responses.

“How about we stop the wars. Stop fighting and actually make a functional government. A government ensures the safety of its people. If they invest more money into our community and not into the military then we can live in peace, and start new projects. This could be revolutionary if we work together. It’s going to bring a new host for new things. It will be the greatest human achievement.” Noah offered. 

Michael presented “The American Law System” which attempted to educate those in attendance on the impeachment of President Donald Trump and shared his opinion that Trump’s behavior was unacceptable, while Aleylin shared eloquently that “we can stop racism and treat everyone with the same respect, we can help out on another.”

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