Black Lives Matters come together at the Hall of Records building in Newark NJ. The movement which began as a hashtag after George Zimmerman’s 2013 acquittal for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, and later gained momentum after the shooting of Michael Brown, the shooting of John Crawford III, and the death of Eric Garner, all in 2014.
Has grown to be coastal including now, there are 23 Black Lives Matter chapters in the U.S., Canada, and Ghana. The organization states that Black Lives Matter is “a unique contribution that goes beyond extrajudicial killings of black people by police and vigilantes” and that “Black Lives Matter affirms the lives of black queer and trans folks, disabled folks, black undocumented folks, folks with records, women and all black lives along the gender spectrum.
The march and peaceful protest was organized by multiple groups, but orchestrated by the “People Organization for Progress”, and it’s President Larry Hamm. It was truly a collective event, the fundamental lesson here is that we have to stay in the street. Our powers based on our ability7 to organize and mobilize our people for collective action. And we these outrageous crime such as the death of Sandra Bland, happen. We have to stand together move together as one person. We can not be still,. We can not be silent, we must speak out, we must protest. Now when I say we must protwlsrt, that does not mean m, I do not support other collective action, such as economic boycott, and such as voting. But make no mistake about it, we would not be here talking about Sandra Bland, or Michael Brown, orEric Garner, if the masses were not protesting in the street.
The first group of speakers were the family members, who livens were killed, mainly from New York and New Jersey, Abdul Kamal, Jerome Reid, and Kashad Ashford. Michelle Kamal’s son, Abdul Kamal, was fatally shot last year by police in Irvington after he allegedly threatened officers during a domestic dispute. Michelle Kamal said she still struggled to continue her life amidst her grief, but was hopeful the officers would be indicted.
“I believe in my heart these officers will be indicted,” she told the crowd.
Cecille Hepburn’s grandson, Kashad Ashford, was shot in Rutherford earlier this year after police allegedly caught him driving a stolen SUV, according to NJ.com.
Hepburn said she was demanding justice for all families who have loved ones die at the hands of police.
“No matter what they did they was loved by their families,” she said
Another speakers from New York City was Juanita Young, the mothers of Malcolm Ferguson, who was awarded $10.45 million in a civil suit against the City of New York for the police killing of her son, in March 2000. A Bronx concluded that plainclothes police officer Louis Rivera had used excessive force while stopping Malcolm, that his conduct had been a substantial factor in causing Malcolm’s death, that he had handled his weapon in a negligent manner, and that this mishandling was a substantial factor in causing Malcolm’s death.
The assembly was multi-racial, and multi-regilous, many speakers thanked and welcome others, supporting the effort but suggested the action must be lead by Black people seeking justice.
Cornell West spoke at the rally, Assemblyman from East New York, Charles Barron, Pam Africa from Philadelphia. Most speakers were local activist, community leaders clergy and educators.Dr. Akil Kokayi Khalfani, Director of the Africana Institute.
Another rally will be held on August 8th, at 4 p.m. by Mayor Ras J. Baraka, the Newark Municipal Council, actor-rapper-activist Common, and thousands of Newark residents will unite to “Occupy the City” .They will meet at five rallying points at 3:30 p.m. in each of Newark’s five wards and walking to the City’s historic downtown “Four Corners” at Broad and Market Streets, for an anti-violence rally. Rapper-activist-actor Common will join the downtown rally.
Building on the success and support from Newark residents during his “Occupy the Block” events, Mayor Baraka decided to host an “Occupy the City” to unite residents from the entire City against despair, violence, and crime, and to promote love, hope, and empowerment. “Occupy the Block” is a community engagement tool modeled after the historic “Occupy” movement, which advocates social disruption of harmful or ineffective constructs.
The rallying points and contact organizers for each ward are as:
· North Ward: Victoria Avenue and Cutler Street. Contact: Daniel Figueroa (201) 566- 6097
· South Ward: Brunswick Street and Astor Street. Contact: Stacey Hillsman (973) 715-3629
· East Ward: Pennington Court. Contact: Ligia DeFreitas (201) 566-3137
· West Ward: 15th Street and 15th Avenue. Contact: Marques-Aquil Lewis (201) 566-5108
· Central Ward: Central Avenue and 9th Street. Contact: Al’Tarik Onque (201) 463-6372
demand an end to what they view as racial profiling, police brutality, mass incarceration of African-Americans, and the militarization of many U.S. police departments.