By Blake Garrison
On Tuesday evening, about 200 people rallied at Freedom Corner and marched in honor of George Floyd after former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin was found guilty on all three counts in the murder of Floyd. The march was organized by Alliance for Police Accountability (APA) who collaborated with city politicians and other organizations to channel the announcement of the verdict into an appeal for reformism and electoral politics.
Brandi Fisher, the CEO of APA opened the event, “I know we’re so sick of this government and its system, and until we overthrow it, we still have to live in it. That’s why we put initiatives on the ballot.”
Event organizers invited politicians Jerry Dickinson and Ed Gainey to speak at the event. Gainey, who is running for mayor, recently told the ruling-class Pittsburgh City Paper that “The amount of protesters gas sprayed in the park last year, a lot of that could have been avoided […] by just having [police] sitting down weekly with protesters.”
In reference to Chauvin’s guilty verdicts, one protester, a Black woman, told Tribune, “We won this victory because we came out, because white people came out with us. Because we all protested.”
Once the protesters took to the streets the crowd began chanting, “No good cops in a racist system, no bad protesters in a revolution!” and “You can’t stop the revolution!”
“If they didn’t find [Chauvin] guilty this would be a different kind of protest. They don’t want that,” one woman said.
In the Uptown neighborhood, community members gathered on their porches, others opened their windows to cheer the march on. Onlookers could be heard shouting, “Victory!” and “Black lives matter!”
“We as our people can make our country a better place if we work together, because it’s not just one culture struggling on their own,” a woman standing outside of her home shared, “Seeing everyone out here, I really believe a new world is possible.”
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