CHICAGO–(ENEWSPF)–August 5, 2016. On Sunday, August 7 at 5:00 PM, Chicagoans of all ages and backgrounds will gather at Wrigley Square in Millennium Park in Chicago, for a march in response to the recent recorded acts of police brutality that resulted in the deaths of Paul O’Neal and others. The protesters will all stand in solidarity with the Black community, the Black Lives Matter movement, as well as the families of those who have lost their lives to police brutality and other forms of systemic oppression. This country is plagued with systemic oppression that keeps certain races in unfavorable positions. The organizers want an end to the same oppression their ancestors fought, and for the first time in American history, they want equity. The protesters will unite to shine light on both issues, to show how much they care about the effects they will have on their generation and the next.
“Knowing that it’s only been four weeks since many youth gathered, for the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile, and someone else’s death has become a hashtag is mentally draining. Knowing that if my little brother ever felt scared enough to run from the police, that he could possibly get shot, makes me scared for our future. We need to keep saying their names until we see change, we have to make their names visible, we cannot stay silent to the injustice that is happening in our country,” says Maxine Wint, 16.
“The United States was built on the oppression of people of color and women and we cannot move towards a more equitable society without acknowledging this fact. People like to think we live in a post-racial society because we have a black president and the Civil Rights Act but there’s still so many problems when it comes to race in this country. Black people are still targeted by the police simply because of their skin. As well, the justice system is clearly ineffective when it comes to the numerous cases of unjust killing of black and brown people. There is an obvious need for change in this country and it needs to happen now,” says Natalie Braye, 16.
The protest aims to break the divide between communities, and bring youth from all areas of Chicago in solidarity with Black Lives Matter. The goals are for their initiatives and passions as young people to catch the eye of politicians and judges, who have the power to indict the officers responsible. Breaking the cycle of officers getting away with injustice is crucial to eradicating systemic oppression towards Black people, as well as other communities of color. Also, they aim for their collective voices to eliminate the ‘othering’ of the Black Lives Matter movement in the media. Most importantly, they seek to abolish systemic oppression as a whole. Lastly, they demand validation that Black Lives Matter, and more political representation when dealing with these cases, so that justice will always be served, and the system will be equitable.
Natalie Braye, age 16
Sophia Byrd, age 17
Eva Lewis, age 17
Maxine Wint, age 16
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