Nearly 150 people gathered at the community center on Charleston Avenue for the peaceful walk chanting “Black Lives Matter” and other slogans commemorating the deaths of George Floyd and so many other men and women.
The throng massed at the Peter Mott House Underground Railroad Museum where they heard retired history teacher and documentarian Muneerah Higgs encourage them to remember the lessons she taught them, to organize and strategize.
Here is an excerpt of her remarks:
What about Trayvon Martin, Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Sandra Bland, Ahmaud Arbery and the list goes on and on? This destruction has festered because of racism and poor policing in our communities. Policing that encourages a system of oppression with fear of incarceration and death. So I say there must be reform to these systems NOW!
So where do we go from here? We’ve carried the torch as far as we can. Now we appeal, to you, the younger generations, to pick up the torch and run with it.
What can you do, you might ask?
- Follow Shaun King (activist on Instagram-Facebook) who knows the issues and gives a plan. Follow Van Jones who also discussed police and prison reform with a plan.
- Get out to vote and get 5 friends to register and if needed give them a ride to the polls!
- Get involved in the community issues, be informed, and speak out, go to council meetings, look at budgets, see how they allocate the money.
- If your white friends come to you and ask you what they can do, tell them to have conversations with their white friends and family because we can’t change them.
- Connect with the police/talk to them/form alliances.
- Read and educate yourselves.
- Stop fighting each other and protect each other. Stop selling drugs to each other and support black businesses
Young people, don’t let this opportunity pass you by to make significant change in this country and the world. This is your day and time. This will never stop until we lift our voices and challenge this racism and injustice. Don’t let this be the end of your journey. Let it be the beginning of a new day in Lawnside and America. You must continue this fight for social justice. Be the change that you want to see.
NO LONGER ARE WE WILLING TO SIT BY AND ACCEPT SYSTEMIC RACISM AS PART OF OUR NATIONAL CONDITION. WE HAVE TAKEN TO THE STREETS PEACEFULLY TO CREATE A BETTER FUTURE FOR THE UNITED STATES AND THE WORLD.
And in conclusion, let us older people remember that our younger people need us to show them love, give them hugs and to be listened to. We must join the younger people in this fight for reform.
I STAND STRONG WITH YOU. KNOW THAT YOU HAVE MY SUPPORT!