George Floyd’s death has no doubt sparked conversation and outrage among other things around the world after the 46-year-old died under the knee of a (former) Minneapolis police officer.
“I wanted to organize a protest because it was in my hometown and it is predominantly white and conservative and people there do not think racism is a thing,” said Alexis Wray, a recent graduate of N.C. A&T. She organized a peaceful protest of about 300 people in her hometown of West Jefferson, North Carolina which only has a population of about 1,300 people.
There have been protests worldwide. With Floyd being laid to rest last Tuesday, some questions that are being floated around social media and the black community. The questions are should the protests continue and what’s next for the “Black Lives Matter” movement?
“We should keep the movement going, we cannot let up, we should not get complacent. I feel like protests are working,” said Destiny Williams, a rising junior at N.C. A&T, who has participated in protests in Goldsboro, Kinston and Raleigh. “I do think some money needs to go into police training because it should be more extensive. It seems like anyone can just sign up to be a cop and do eight weeks of training. The lifestyle people maintain after those eight weeks are what determine the good and bad cops.”
The consensus among many protesters is that they do not want justice for other people who have fallen victim to police brutality to fall by the wayside just because of this one instance of perceived change.
“I feel like protests need to continue. We need to keep our foot on the gas. I hate that the "Black Lives Matter" movement was only about hashtag George Floyd. It is not just George Floyd, there are people like Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery who still need justice. Since we have their attention [law enforcement], we need to protest every day until they change the laws,” said Telisia Smith, a Durham citizen. She recently organized a protest in Durham on June 8 and raised $320 for the late Breonna Taylor.