Black Lives Matter Protests Are Still Occurring Nationwide

Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter has had a huge following and an enormous amount of support since May 2020 when George Floyd was killed. There has been a protest, after protest demanding change and that police be held accountable for the use of excessive force. It had become a social media trend a little over a month ago but has since lost traction on social media such as Instagram or Twitter. Just because the movement has less exposure to social media does not mean it has stopped. Protesting continues across the country, and it looks as though there is no intention to slow down.

In Loomis, a small town outside of Sacramento,  a protest was held on Saturday. Zasu Scott, a 19-year-old organized the protest. They said, “As an ally, it was my responsibility to build the trenches for change to happen here,”  “I recognize that a lot of my friends of color don’t feel comfortable coming down here. They didn’t want to come to the event because they were scared. That’s the reason to have it.” A protester wearing a shirt that read “Grandmas for BLM” made the statement, “I just watch what’s going on and I feel for people who are afraid all the time,” “I don’t have to worry about that. I can look in my rear-view mirror and feel safe. I just know young Black men cannot.” These powerful statements show the necessity of the Black Lives Matter movement.

The “Boogaloo”

The Boogaloo movement is a group of people who believe there will be an armed conflict, resulting in at the end of the world. Three of the members of this group were arrested after having plotted to create violence between the police and the protestors. The three men were Andrew Lynam who is a member of the United States Army Reserve, Stephen Parshall who served in the Navy, and William Loomis of the Air Force. They met while attending a protest against the restriction sput in pace to stop the spread of COVID-19. The FBI said all three were preparing for an upcoming “civil war.”

The three saw the protests as an opportunity to spread chaos and start violence. Prosecutors say they attempted to hijack to anger and unrest about the death of George Floyd and use it as a catalyst for violence. According to a federal complaint, they planned to use smoke bombs and fireworks to create a confrontation between police and protestors.  In the complaint, it seemed that the men were upset the protests had not turned violent and decided to make them violent. The men discussed causing a riot by firebombing a power station and on May 30th they set out to do so.

On the 30th of May, the FBI surveilled Parshall buying a gasoline can. The men then met at their appointed spot. What they did not know, was Loomis was a source for the FBI. A swat team swooped in and both Lynam and Parshall were arrested. On their person, the FBI found an AR-15, ammunition, fireworks, and Molotov cocktails. They originally were arrested under state terrorism and obtaining explosive charges, but now face federal charges for conspiracy to damage and destroy by explosive and the possession of unregistered firearms.

Black Lives Matter

Black Lives Matter started in 2013 when George Zimmerman was on trial for killing Trayvon Martin. Then, it was only a hashtag started by Alicia Garza after she felt that she had been punched in the stomach when Zimmerman was acquitted. She wrote a highly emotional post that explained that she was continuously surprised by how little Black Lives Mattered. The phrase continued to be used around the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd. It is much more than a hashtag now. It is chanted at protests and is the anthem of the movement against racism and police brutality.

Recently, the leaders of Black Lives Matter explain that for seven years, they’ve had their work cut out for them. With as little as $100,000 over seven years, resources were few and far between. Though now with the recent spike in exposure, Black Lives Matter has had more money than ever before, which the same three women who started the movement in 2013 decide how to spend it. This means for the first time in seven years, the Black Lives Matter organization has the potential to make a huge change, which is an enormous achievement.

Written by Joseph Nelson

Edited by Sheena Robertson

Sources:

The Sacramento Bee: Black Lives Matter rally met by All Lives Matter counter protesters in Loomis

ABC7: Feds charge 3 ‘boogaloo’ adherents plotting violence at BLM protest
CNN: How Black Lives Matter went from a hashtag to a global rallying cry
Image Courtesy of Fibonacci Blue’s Flickr Page

Leave a Reply