‘Black Lives Matter’ Protests Seen In All 50 States Following The Death Of George Floyd
Peaceful protests within all 50 states of America have been defying curfews and marching well into the night this week to protest the murder of George Floyd and all other black people who have died at the hands of the police. On the eighth night of protests (last night), protesters experienced less violence due to a decrease in police presence, which also led to fewer interactions with protesters and police in general.
The violence, riots, and looting aspect of these protests are more times than not brought on by the police themselves, or outside parties not actually involved in the peaceful protests, and instead want to instigate the crowd to start acting violent. The majority of those who are actually fighting for justice reform and Black Lives Matter, however, have remained completely peaceful unless instigated by an aggressive outside presence.
The initial protests began last Monday after George Floyd was murdered by ex-officer Derek Chauvin who kneeled on Floyd’s neck for nearly nine minutes while he cried out that he couldn’t breathe multiple times; three officers also stood over Floyd and the officer for the nine minutes, watching Chauvin kill Floyd and not doing anything about it.
Protests initially began in Los Angeles, New York City, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Atlanta but within the past week alone peaceful protests have been occurring in major metropolitan’s in all 50 states! One of the first times in US history that all of the states were protesting for the same thing simultaneously.
However, due to the instigated violence and rioting behaviors that are being brought on by the police force, and now national guard, these metropolitan’s leaders are instilling curfews and strict protesting measures. LA and NY especially have been emphasizing their curfews; which has caused all major political parties to receive major backlash, especially considering the individuals who were protesting the pandemic and the right to go to work two weeks ago who were allowed to do so without any police presence whatsoever, and a majority of those protesters were yielding assault weapons; they were also all mainly white.
“He will never see her grow up, graduate. He will never walk her down the aisle. If there is a problem she’s having and she needs her daddy, she does not have that anymore. I am here for my baby, and I’m here for George because I want justice for him.” Roxie Washington, the mother of Floyd’s 6-year-old daughter, said.
Actor John Boyega speaks to the crowd during a Black Lives Matter protest
In regards to George Floyd’s case, Derek Chauvin has since been fired, arrested, and charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter; it’s important to note that the arrest wasn’t made until the protests actually began and the video went viral. The other three officers have also been fired, but remain uncharged; although Floyd’s family attorney, Ben Crump, believes that they will also receive justice for their crimes.
“We think all of them should be charged with some type of felony murder for participating in the horrific killing of George Floyd. An independent autopsy found that the knee on Floyd’s neck as well as two other officers’ knees holding him down contributed to his death,” Crump said.
The Minnesota Attorney General, Keith Ellison, is now leading the prosecution of the case and has vowed to “hold everyone accountable who is legally culpable.” He went on to explain that he would be going through everything with a fine tooth comb to ensure that every single aspect of this case is clear when presented to a court.
Anyone with social media has seen the extreme violence that’s been brought on by the police with some of these larger protests in cities like LA and NYC especially. Thousands have been arrested throughout the country, hundreds have been injured, and some have been killed. It’s even more essential that those out there peacefully protesting are protected and able to express their first amendment rights as Americans.
Protests are projected to continue and grow larger until the case of George Floyd is brought to the courtroom and justice is served for all four officers involved. Black Lives Matter as an organization has made it very clear that Floyd’s murder just scratches the surface of what they’re fighting for in terms of racial equality and justice for all black people who have been killed unjustly by the police.
If you want to know more about the Black Lives Matter movement and how you can directly help from home, click here for access to dozens of petitions, donation pages, and fundraising efforts specifically for those fighting for racial equality right now.
Eric Mastrota is a Contributing Editor at The National Digest based in New York. A graduate of SUNY New Paltz, he reports on world news, culture, and lifestyle. You can reach him at email@example.com.