Black Lives Matter

At least 2000 Seattle teachers sported Black Lives Matter shirts at schools across the city on October 19, . The action was part of several rallies under the banner of “Black Lives Matter at School” to push for racial justice in education in the United States.

Sylville Smith (left) and protests against his killing in Milwaukee. With the media awash 24/7 with the charges and counter-charges between the two candidates for president from the major capitalist parties, police murders of African Americans and protests against them continue apace — receiving only cursory media attention.
An Australian version of an open letter from Asian Americans in solidarity with Black Lives Matter has been circulating on social media. “Letters for Black Lives” is a project that began in the United States to initiate cross-generational conversations between young Asian Americans and their families about anti-Blackness and police violence. The original letter has since gained 200 contributors, 30 translations, and dozens of audio and video recordings.
The death of yet another Black man at the hands of police — this time in Milwaukee on August 13 — touched off nights of rebellious protests as crowds of people confronted officers and demanded justice. The bitter discontent was years in the making. It is the result of systematic racism and discrimination that has left Black residents in Wisconsin's largest city as second-class citizens.
The US’s first Black swimmer to win a gold medal, Simone Manuel, dedicated her win to ending police brutality on August 11. Manuel tied with Penny Oleksiak from Canada at 52:70 to win gold in the 100 metre freestyle race at the Rio games that day.
"And, no, it's not going to end today. I can't tell you it's going to end tomorrow. I don't know when it's going to end. But it's for y'all to start." This is what Sedan Smith, the brother of Sylville Smith, the 23-year-old African American man shot dead by police, told Democracy Now! on August 15. "This is what you get! We're not the ones killing us! You're killing us! We can't make a change if you all don't change."
Chace Hill is a young Koori man who lives in Perth. He recently completed an honours degree in criminology at Murdoch University looking at racism. He is also a Resistance Young Socialist Alliance member. He spoke to Green Left Weekly's Zebedee Parkes about racism in the justice system and the recent Four Corners program about the abuse of Aboriginal children in the Don Dale detention centre in Darwin. * * * Tell us about your honours thesis.
in Minnesota and Louisiana in early July created an uproar across the US and around the world. In Australia there was lots of social media commentary and letters to the press about US racism.
A Black Lives Matter protest in New York on July 9. Once again the deep racism and racial divide in the United States has burst upon the national scene, dominating newspapers, TV and social media. Since 2014, videos taken by witnesses of police murders of Black people spurred the rise of the Black Lives Matter movement. In spite of the overwhelming visual proof of the guilt of the police murderers, they have almost all gotten away with it.
“Protesters in Chicago, New York and St Paul, Minnesota, took to the streets on July 7 to express outrage after the second fatal police shooting of a Black man in the United States in two days,” Reuters said that day . Reuters said the protests were peaceful but tension was evident after the shooting of Philando Castile, 32, by police near St Paul on July 6. His girlfriend posted live video on the internet of the bloody scene minutes afterward, which was widely viewed.
Three young African-American women started a blog in 2013 entitled “Black Lives Matter” in the wake of the acquittal of George Zimmerman, a racist vigilante backed by the police, for the murder of unarmed Black youth Trayvon Martin. The blog started a movement that took the same name, as young Blacks launched mass actions that broke through the wall of silence concerning police murders of Black people.
Protests against police killings in Chicago, November 25. Across the country, police murders of Black people continue apace — as do prosecutors' failure to charge the killers, getting hung juries at best.
In an atypical move in cases of police killings of unarmed African Americans,‭ ‬six police officers in Baltimore have been charged with serious crimes over the‭ ‬death of‭ ‬25-year-old African American man Freddie Gray last month. Baltimore state attorney Marilyn Mosby announced the charges on May‭ ‬1,‭ ‬which include second-degree murder against one officer.
Khury Petersen-Smith is a 32-year-old African American activist based in Boston, who is actively involved in the growing “Black Lives matter” struggle sweeping the US. I was able to speak with Petersen-Smith, a member of the International Socialist Organization, at the Marxism 2015 conference organised by Socialist Alternative in Melbourne over Easter, at which he was a featured guest.

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