The anniversary has taken on new significance as peaceful protests continue around the world. These marches were sparked by the murder of George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man killed by Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin. Hundreds of thousands of people in cities around the world, from London to Amsterdam to Toronto and all across the United States, chant Floyd’s name as they take a non-violent stand against police brutality and systemic racism in their countries. In the United States, these demonstrations have been met by a show of police force unprecedented in scale in modern times.
As each day unfolds, troubling clips from each protest are uploaded, shared, and go viral. Over and over, we see police forces displaying its capacity for violence with a demonic vibrance: they emulate a white supremacist killer in Charlottesville using an automobile to disperse a crowd, they pluck people off the street unprompted, shoot journalists with less-lethal rounds. For me, the most disturbing video that did not include any physical violence was one of a heavily armed officer bouncing on his feet as he clutched his weapon and licked his lips at the prospect of bloodshed.
Media can continue to blast out copaganda of officers kneeling with protestors in ostensible displays of solidarity, or focus on isolated instances of looting, but it all seems a bit feeble; it feels like we go past the point of no return several times each day. If this moment is to be an inflection point for real, positive change, it’s going to take a lot of work and organizing to see it through. If that sounds good to you, we’ve collected some resources below.
Donate to bail funds for protestors
And of course, if you go out to protest, make sure you stay safe.
Urge institutions and politicians to divest from police
Do the reading
Keep that same energy
June is Pride Month, a celebration that would not have been created without the radical leadership of Black transgender woman named Marsha P. Blackburn, who was on the frontlines of the Stonewall Uprising. At the end of the month, will you have donated any money to the Marsha P. Johnson Institute, or the Black Trans Homeless Fund?
You might have a fear that any activism you share on social media could be perceived as self-gratifying, or more for clout than any sense of solidarity. For tips on how to be an effective ally, Mireille Cassandra Harper has “10 Steps for Non-Optical Allyship.”