So proud to have been a part of today's #blackouthollywood march ... Peaceful, passionate, and so inspiring! So proud of @darnellappling for pulling together such a massive and well organized event. I encourage everyone to do their part to show up in support of human rights! We all deserve to be treated equally, regardless of race, where we live, or financial means. We are all human and we are all Americans! Regram from @honestlytish #humanrights #justice
Peaceful protests across the country have ramped up thanks to the growing awareness that deaths at the hands of police officers happen all the time. According to recent reporting in the Wall Street Journal, more than 550 police homicides went unrecorded between 2007 and 2012.
While protests after grand juries refused to indict police officers in the deaths of Mike Brown in Ferguson and Eric Garner in Staten Island have intentionally inconvenienced cities — no one should think a traffic jam is more important than people being killed — they have been peaceful. Eric Garner's mother, speaking at a rally in Harlem on Saturday, said that a demonstration had her stuck in traffic on the West Side Highway in Manhattan. A protester recognized her and hugged her and "everybody else followed," CNN reported. "My heart is overflowing with joy."
Today, dozens of protesters staged die-ins, laying down on the ground at Grand Central Station in Manhattan and Union Station in Washington. Protesters also gathered at Union Square in Manhattan on Saturday evening. There have been similar protests in Atlanta, Boston, Providence, and many other cities across the country.
On the west coast, protesters in Los Angeles staged a die-in on Hollywood Boulevard, where less than 24 hours earlier, police fatally shot a man after law enforcement officials said he did not comply with officer orders. Actor Tyrese Gibson posted a video on his Facebook page asking everyone to "show up and make a statement today," and was pictured marching with hundreds of demonstrators.
Unfortunately, last night in Berkeley, police tear-gassed protestors and made a show of force that resembled the first chaotic night in Ferguson.
Only time will tell if our reaction to these tragedies will cause reforms in policing, but more protests are scheduled for today. Organization is being conducted largely via social media. To get involved, search hashtags such as #blackouthollywood, #icantbreathe, #dcprotest, and #nycprotest and show support in your area.