Today I marched for justice in Brixton. At 35 years strong, this was my first ever protest and I’m so glad I attended.
The whole event was heartfelt and peaceful. It started out in Windrush Square. As we approached the already increasing crowd around 4:00 pm – a crowd mixed with all ages, colours and nationalities – it was apparent that we all shared the same sentiment, that Black Lives Matter. Activists and supporters took turns on a mic to speak their piece on the tragedies that happened this past week in America, as well as what’s going on in our own back yard. We then took to the streets!
There was a police presence, but for the most part they kept their distance and allowed us to march down Brixton Road with only a few Community Support Officers in amongst the crowd.
As we marched chanting “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot”, “Black Lives Matter” and “No Justice, No Peace”, it got quite overwhelming at points. Seeing people who were stuck in their cars, in a traffic jam due to our protest, beeping their horns in support. Even a Fire truck with a sister fire fighter on board, gave us a burst of their sirens.
After marching a circuit around Brixton’s streets, we reached where we started and came to a holt in the middle of the crossroads. Some took to sitting down. As we gathered, a lady came on the mic and told the crowd “Don’t let anyone ever tell you that you’re worth nothing, because you are worth everything! We are enough! We are enough! We are enough!” As everyone joined in, I looked around and could see the fight in people’s eyes, and I saw tears in others. Kay of Black Out Ldn then led a minute’s silence for Alton Sterling and Philando Castile.
The main bulk of the crowd then made their way back over to Windrush Square to listen to people talk on the PA system and mega phones, whilst a group broke off and remained in the middle of the crossroads to continue their protest.
This was a peaceful protest, we had the support of Brixton yesterday. I don’t know exactly what happened towards the end of the night because I had already left. However, some mainstream media are only reporting on probably 5 minutes out of a good 6 hours! They’re making it appear that the we were trouble from the beginning and that definitely wasn’t the case.
A protest doesn’t pop up for no reason, it comes when people have had enough of something that isn’t fair and has been going on for too long. So yes, we shut down Brixton yesterday, people paid a small price for being inconvenienced for a few hours. We are being killed like its nothing and know one is being held responsible for it, that’s our inconvenience. Weigh it up.
I said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m so glad I went to this march today. It’s been an emotional week filled with tears of anger and helplessness. I needed to do something; I needed to shout! I can’t even begin to imagine what it’s been like for our brothers and sisters in the U.S. but know that we see you. We see what’s going on. We see how the mainstream media likes to manipulate the news. We may be over 4,000 miles away with an ocean between us, but we stand with you in solidarity.