Black Lives Matter Movement Shakes Up, Wakes Up the World with Protests

People+march+down+the+streets+of+New+York+City%2C+New+York%2C+for+the+BLM+movement.+Photo+taken+on+June+2%2C+2020.

Photo Courtesy of @rjg.iii on Instagram

People march down the streets of New York City, New York, for the BLM movement. Photo taken on June 2, 2020.

Elizabeth Perez and Kevin Ramirez

The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement shook the nation into countless marches, protesting harsh police brutality, and ill-treatment towards African Americans. 

George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man was killed after a police officer kneeled on his neck for almost nine minutes on May 25, 2020. This led to an uproar. Protests have occurred all around the world with the participation from supporters. On June 6, there were over 15 million people who protested in cities all around the world to protest the several deaths of African Americans who were victims of injustice. 

Nations came together to bring justice for all the Black men and women killed as a result of police brutality including Floyd.

The inability for these few “bad apples” to be properly sentenced caused outrage in protesters and their rage also affected the police officers and departments responsible for their involvement in the murders. 

A specific case of this was the burning of the Minneapolis Police Station. Hundreds of spectators began to chant “burn it down, burn it down,” as the fire began on May 28, only a few days after the death of Floyd. 

Sophomore, Emiliano Ayala, said, “There obviously needs to be reformation and requirement changes in order to be a police officer.”

Ayala added, “I feel like the protests are a great way to get our voices heard and get a message out.”

Opposing sides pleaded that “All lives matter.” This led to celebrities speaking out on social media about their thoughts on the Black Lives Matter protests.

Well known model Bella Hadid posted, “I’m sure all of you feel the same way, but my sadness has viciously turned into anger…this will not be overlooked!!” 

15-year-old Andrea Haro, attended one of the many BLM protests in Santa Ana and gave insight on what she experienced. 

“We were chanting, demanding justice for those who we have lost to police brutality,” said Haro. 

She felt safe and at home seeing crowds of people come together to spread awareness for people who lost their lives as a result of police brutality and she found it extraordinary. 

Haro saw that protests were being given a bad reputation. 

“At first I was really worried just because of what I was hearing from the media and I was scared I was going to be put in danger,” said Haro. 

Sophomore, Cecilia Mejia, attends Godinez Fundamental High School. 

Mejia said, “I think the BLM movement is so amazing and inspirational.”

For her, the BLM movement is not about making one racial group superior, it is about making them equal.

Mejia felt empowered, “It is a fight for equality that we’ve been fighting for, for decades.”

A peaceful protest in Seattle, Wash., June 1, quickly turned violent with the use of batons, pepper spray, and tear gas. Protests are said to often be peaceful and only turn violent because of police officers. 

Many cities such as New York, Miami, and Los Angeles have had countless protests to give light to the names of those who were murdered. In early June, a large group of protesters in Hollywood of over 20,000 people gathered to protest the death of George Floyd. This was the largest protest of the year for the BLM movement. 

The allegations of excessive police force on social media posts skyrocketed after the protests and the countless deaths of African Americans. People turned to social media as an outlet and as a billboard to announce these cases and get justice. 

Even with the increase of police murders of innocent Black Americans, the government and courts have not pressed charges on most of the officers involved. This sparked even more outrage in protesters who are looking for justice to be served. 

Jonathan Prince, a 31-year-old Black man, was killed by Wolfie City Police officer Shaun Lucas on October 3 at a local gas station. 

In a recent tweet, Ben Crump, a Trial Lawyer for Justice, made a memorial post for Prince. 

He tweeted, “Jonathan Price was a “pillar of the community” and was simply trying to help those in need… but was assaulted, tased, shot and KILLED on Saturday by Wolfe City police. When will the open season end on our Black brothers and sisters?? We demand #JusticeForJonathan!!”

According to the Texas Rangers, the investigation on his death found that Officer Lucas used deadly force that was not “objectively reasonable”

These kinds of tragedies are what started the BLM protests in the first place. This case is only one out of the countless deaths caused by unnecessary police brutality. 

With the never ending deaths of innocent African Americans, protests will continue to strive for change. This is not a mere phase, it is a movement that will continue to support BLM until equality and justice is fulfilled.