Black lives matter
A year ago, one man’s death changed history. After George Floyd was killed in police custody on 25 May, a wave of protests against police violence and systemic racism erupted across the US and the rest of the world. The statement phrase: “Black Lives Matter”.
Black Lives Matter is a group that fights racism around the world. It has been run since 2013, when #BlackLivesMatter began trending on social media after the death of a black teenager named Trayvon Martin.
The 2020 Black Lives Matter protests inspired global change. They were the biggest protests in US history, with 26 million estimated to have taken part. Demonstrations also took place in over 2,000 cities in 60 countries. Graffiti of George Floyd’s face appeared on buildings everywhere, from bombed out buildings in Syria to the Berlin Wall.
Several US states, including California, Nevada and Texas, introduced immediate police reforms; the controversially named Washington Redskins team has changed its name; in the UK, protestors tore down statues of slave traders; Germany reopened discussions about racism ingrained in its language.
The main message of last year’s protests was that every single one of us has a duty to be anti-racist. How will you fight racism this week?
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An introduction to charity The Black Curriculum, which aims to teach black history in schools across the UK.
- Make a banner that you could take on a Black Lives Matter protest.
- Social media activism was a major aspect of the protests in 2020. Discuss as a group: can social media be a force for good?
- Research the Black Lives Matter protests in your country. Write a report in the style of The Day about them and describe any long term effects they had.