George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis has caused a strong reaction here in Atlanta. Protests played out Thursday afternoon and more are promised today Friday 5/29.
“If they allow that to happen in Minneapolis, we’re going to allow it to happen everywhere,” one protestor told Channel 2’s Matt Johnson.
Demonstrators lined sidewalks around the CNN Center in downtown Thursday.
The deaths of Floyd in Minnesota, Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Ky., and Ahmaud Arbery in coastal Georgia are inspiring a larger protest on Friday.
Organizers of the protest are expecting more than 100 people to show up and remain peaceful too.
“We don’t need anyone else getting hurt. We don’t need any more hashtags,” protestor Zoe Bambara said.
She is helping organize a Justice for Us demonstration starting at the state Capitol Friday at 3 p.m. and ending at Centennial Olympic Park.
“I just want people to understand our anger. We have a right to be angry,” Bambara said.
Here’s the schedule of Friday’s protest
3 p.m.: Meet Centennial Olympic Park to make signs and distribute water
3:45 p.m.: Begin March to Capitol
4:20 p.m.: Protest/Brief Moment of Silence
5:30 p.m.: Begin march back to Centennial Olympic Park
African Americans across the country have voiced frustration about delays in the prosecution of each case.
“Everyone’s ready for a change, ready to get together,” Bambara said.
Recent Georgia demonstrations in Brunswick over Arbery’s death have remained peaceful.
But even something as peaceful as bird watching turned into a racist encounter in New York’s Central Park recently.
“It was scary to watch,” said Jason Ward, a bird watcher here in Atlanta.
Ward worked with Christian Cooper, the man shown in a viral video. He asked a woman to put her dog on a leash and she responded by telling Cooper she would call police and accuse him of threatening her.
“To hear the trembling in his voice shed light on how precarious the interaction was,” Ward said, noting that he’s been profiled several times for doing what he loves. He said you can’t achieve equality by hiding.
“We should make sure that we’re out there. We should make sure that our faces are seen out there. We should make this a more regular, common occurrence—black people enjoying outdoor spaces,” Ward said.