George Floyd’s death is horrific, but not unique. America’s police and criminal justice systems are the legacies of our country’s white supremacist, slave-owning history. Structural racism persists across every facet of American life and is perhaps most evident in the way that law enforcement interacts with communities of color. All across the country, Black people are more likely to be harassed, arrested, and killed by police than their white counterparts.
We have a national crisis of white supremacist violence against Black people in this country. In the past 10 years alone, we witnessed the deaths of thousands of Black people at the hands of police. Breonna Taylor, Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Sandra Bland, and Philando Castile are just some of the names of those we’ve lost to racialized police violence.
Indivisible Evanston stands in solidarity with the four Evanston youth leaders who are spearheading the "Evanston Fight for Black Lives" march and rally on Sunday, May 31. The organizers, Liana Wallace, Amalia Louiseau, Sinobia Aiden, and Nia Williams say they have planned an action that will adhere to social distancing and safety guidelines given the COVID-19 pandemic.
From the organizers: "Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd. Their deaths permeate in an America where Black death composes the soil we stand upon. Whether it has been the disproportionate rate at which Black and Brown folks are dying from COVID-19 and the disregard for these deaths reflected in pools packed with white people, or the brutality under which we have lost so many with little regard or action from leadership we know that Black death in many ways is meaningless to many. We are tired. Join us Sunday, May 31st in a demonstration to stand in solidarity with the Black community and demand justice for Black lives. Not only should Black culture matter but the lives of Black people should be protected in America. Especially in light of recent events involving theEvanston Police Department against citizens, this action is needed."
1:30 pm: Join us at Church & Ridge as we march in a socially distant fashion, led by informed youth leaders to ETHS.
3:00 pm: Rally together at ETHS Parking Lot 1 (in front of the school) to demand action while social distancing.
All attendees must wear a mask or face-covering.
If you are not able to physically march with us, please join us for our ETHS rally at 3 pm.
Please bring posters and information on how to take action to help get justice for Black lives and their right to not only survive but live. Due to COVID-19, please do not bring anything paper to pass out.
More ways to take action from home in the event resource.
TAKE ACTION FROM HOME
The organizers of "Evanston Fight for Black Lives" are taking many measures to ensure that this event adheres to social distancing and everyone attending is required to wear a mask. However, if you are not comfortable with taking the risk to attend a public event of this size, or unable to march or attend the rally for other reasons, you can still take action in support protest tomorrow from the safety of your own home. FROM EVANSTON FIGHT FOR BLACK LIVES RESOURCE:
We love these ideas from the youth leaders of today's event. If you can't attend the march due to health, safety or other concerns, here are some ideas about how you can express your feelings from a distance.
Chalk It Out! Use art to express what you feel! During, and after the rally, plan to decorate your neighborhood with positive messages. Remind your neighbors that Black Lives Matter!
Write it out! It is important to let your feelings out in your notes on your phone, or handwritten in a journal. Whatever works best for you! Do not keep them in. Take this time on Sunday to reflect on how the recent events have been affecting you personally. With your emotions, use it to come up with tangible ways to make change. In the march resource document are articles with ideas if you are having some trouble. Also included in the guide are phone numbers and emails to contact, petitions to sign, and organizations to support.
Take a walk in solidarity with us! Although you may not be able to march, feel free to take a walk in your respective neighborhood with us! Don’t worry, we will still feel your presence!
At Indivisible, we believe Black Lives Matter without qualifications, asterisks, or add-ons. We also believe in the right for communities to protest and protect themselves against state-sanctioned violence.
To support Black people in the Twin Cities fighting for their community, we recommend donating and supporting these local organizations: Black Visions Collective: Supporting Black activists on the ground; Minnesota Freedom Fund: Bail fund for activists; Reclaim the Block: Community fund; Northstar Health Collective: Medical donations; Unicorn Riot: On-the-ground independent & radical media coverage; George Floyd Family/Memorial Fund.
Pursue your own anti-racist education with these resources: Anti-Racism Resources for White People, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh, and Qualified Immunity: Explained.
Ask your representative to co-sponsor the Omar-Pressley resolution. Reps. Ilhan Omar (MN-5) and Ayanna Pressley (MA-7) have introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives condemning police violence. Call your representative and demand that they co-sponsor the resolution and speak out publicly about the need for the House to pass it without delay. Contact Rep. Jan Schakowsky. Update: Rep. Schakowsky signed on 6/1/20. Contact her to thank her for supporting this important resolution.
Only one of the officers involved in the murder of George Floyd has been arrested and charged. Call County Attorney Michael Freeman at (844) 278-2934 and demand that the other three officers are arrested and charged, and that protestors are released now. (See this tweet from Color of Change)
Use the Winning Justice Prosecutor Project from Color of Change to make calls to keep pressure on the two District Attorneys to take responsibility for the large role they played in delaying justice for the murder of Ahmaud Arbery. Make calls now. Indivisible Evanston asks you to support the work of BLOC in Milwaukee (Black Leaders Organizing for Communities). BLOC's mission is to: 1/ invest in our community and engage citizens to build long-term political power. 2/ Through coordinated political action ensure a high quality of life and access to economic opportunity for members of the Black community in Milwaukee and throughout Wisconsin. 3/ Empower Black leaders with the tools, training, and resources needed to organize and guarantee that their issues, concerns, and values are represented at all levels of government. Please share with friends and family, and stay strong and safe. In solidarity, IE Leadership #BlackLivesMatter #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd #StopPoliceBrutality
Author: Laura Tanner, Co-Leader
Youth organizers of the Evanston Fight for Black Lives.
Photo credit: Dear Evanston