The Socialist 15 July 2020 |
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Black Lives Matter protests - another injustice exposed
Wolverhampton Black Lives Matter protest June 2020 (Click to enlarge)
1,000 people turned out for Bristol's latest Black Lives Matter (BLM) protest on 12 July. With protesters socially distanced and sat on the grass, there wasn't the same energy as the first BLM demonstration in the city, which saw the toppling of a statue of slave trader Edward Colston.
Those attending were no less determined in their desire to fight for change though. Every mention of the statue coming down elicited cheers from the crowd.
But the organisers were clear, change has to go wider than removing the name Colston from the city's buildings, and must include ensuring that the real history of Bristol and the slave trade is taught in schools.
The large panel of speakers put forward a range of different ways for fighting racism. These included advocating for more black-owned businesses.
Socialist Party members handed out leaflets which quoted from Malcolm X saying "you can't have capitalism without racism".
We put forward a socialist alternative to this racist capitalist system, where the economy would be neither white-owned nor black-owned, but collectively owned and run by the working class.
Another large demonstration in Brighton on 11 July, 5,000 marching, came days after the arrest of a young black man by Sussex Police was captured on video.
He was restrained on the ground by three officers, and can be heard complaining that he can't breathe.
The real anger stirred up by the incident was reflected on the march by the overwhelmingly young crowd.
As with previous Black Lives Matter protests, the Socialist Party received an enthusiastic response, with real hunger for our ideas.
Over the last two demonstrations we have met dozens of people interested in receiving more details about the Socialist Party.
A lively and enthusiastic BLM protest, overwhelmingly young, marched from Fairlands Park to Stevenage town centre, where an impromptu rally was held.
Speakers highlighted the many examples of police racism both here and in the USA. Everyone then took the knee.
We carried Socialist Party banners on the march and almost everyone accepted our leaflet that we handed out.