The City of Newark, NJ showed up and showed out this past weekend for George Floyd. Following the atrocious murder of yet another unarmed Black man at the hands of police, cities across The United States have taken action to express their anger and agony. Demonstrations dominate our social media timelines and news cycles. While comprehensible acts of arson and looting permeate cities across America, Newark, NJ took center stage.
Led by Mayor Ras Baraka and the People’s Organization For Progress, New Jersey’s largest metropolis staged a peaceful and unified demonstration this past weekend. Thousands of New Jerseyans from far and near gathered Downtown Newark to echo the pain felt across this nation, but Newark natives and city leaders set the tone.
“We have to speak against the barbaric and inhumane, outright sickness that took place in Minneapolis, Minnesota, it is our job to do so,” exclaimed Mayor Baraka.
In one instance, an unidentified man and non-Newark native carried a bat in an attempt to destroy property. The man was quickly stopped and disarmed by Newark residents, demonstrating pride in protection for the city.
The exemplary act of pride and protection is rooted in Mayor Baraka’s opening message prior to Saturday’s peaceful protest.
“Newark has been here before.”
More than 50 years ago, Newark experience the riots in 1967. These riots were ignited by the brutal beating of an unarmed Black cab driver at the hands of two white police officers, in addition to many instances of racial profiling and systemic racism within the city.
As you can see, not much has changed throughout this country, but we continue to fight. While we fight, we do so in solidarity.