Times Square was jammed with just some of the peaceful protestors in New York City Sunday afternoon led by members of the Black Lives Matter movement and Black leaders in the city.
Unlike some protestors of the past week, this demonstration was peaceful and was focused on speakers on a stage set up on 42nd Street and Broadway, who among other things, called for the creation of a controversial “elected Civilian Complaint Review Board,” directly chosen by voters. Currently, the board is selected by elected officials.
Nupol Kiazolu, president of the Greater New York Chapter of Black Lives Matter, apparently let it slip at their rally in Times Square, alluding to the crowd that they had other pending proposals that would reform to the police department and the way people are treated. She said her group has been working on this legislation for more than two years.
This means that we the community will have power — and that power is in this community,” she said, before being interrupted as being premature in making the announcement.
She decried the death of George Floyd, but she called it symptomatic of what is going on nationwide.
“It’s not a moment, it’s a movement,” Kiazolu said of the protests since Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police officers.
“Young people have been on the front lines since the beginning carrying every single movement as we cross this road,” she said. “It’s time for adults to step aside and lift us because we are not just the future, but the present.
Rev. Dr. Marvin Dewitt Hooks, a pastor of the First African Methodist Zion Church in Brooklyn, said he is upset that “60 years after Martin Luther King, here we are yet again.”
“After we thought we had gotten through Jim Crow, after we thought we had gotten through segregation, after we had thought we had gotten through voter suppression, here we are yet again, sick and tired of being sick and tired,” Hooks said.
Groups came from all parts of the city to take part in this demonstration, with many other marches occurring simultaneously throughout the city and country. So far today, police report those marches to be mostly peaceful, following yesterday’s protests that reported very few arrests. Many protestors have been stepping in to stem the violence, looting, and throwing of objects at police, forcing many of those to stop those actions and remain peaceful.