Did they know why they were protesting?

| 03 Aug 2020 | 05:18

    To the Editor:

    I wanted to provide my opinion , thoughts and feedback on the protest that took place on Saturday, June 20. As an observer at Dysktra Park, I saw lots of people out for the first time in over three months, mostly teens with the different signs stating , Black Lives Matter, Racism is a Pandemic, Enough is Enough.

    I decided to casually start asking the different teens, why it was important for them to be there, what does the most common signs “Black Lives Matter” mean to them? I heard, I’m here “because Black Lives Matter,” “ I think it’s important to be here and show my support,” or “Racism is bad,” but I said what does it really mean to you? After pursuing further, I heard the same theme from most, well, I am here because “everyone is here and I wanted to show my support,” “I didn’t want people to think that I was racist,” or, “I feel like if I didn’t participate, my friends would think differently of me.”

    I left the protest thinking, these were good kids with good intentions who wanted to show their support, but honestly do they really know why they were protesting? Do they have all the knowledge and facts, or were they there because of the pressures of social media and “protest and race shaming”?

    After their 2.5 hours of holding up signs, socially gathering after being in a three-months lockdown, listening to the speeches that they said went on for too long, they went back to their homes behind the white picket fences, some planning a trip to the Sparta Diner later that day for a late lunch.

    Did anyone think of going to Patterson, or Newark to see how they can lend a hand to the mostly African American population, where poverty, a lack of education and crime looms?

    Let’s be honest to ourselves, most of us are not racist, you know in your hearts of hearts “All Lives Matter”!

    Sally Saffarally