Tag Archives: George Floyd Protests

OPINION: CHOP Not the Beginning, and it’s Not the End

by Seattle Black Collective Voice

A man had been murdered by the police. A heartbreaking video of the killing had made it to the internet. Thousands watched as a policeman kneeled on George Floyd’s neck, while Mr. Floyd begged for his life in vain.  

Like protesters across the country, Seattle took a stand against police brutality only to experience more police brutality firsthand. Even non-protesters were harmed by the Seattle Police Department’s (SPD) negligence. On Capitol Hill, tear gas entered people’s homes and businesses, and the police did not care. 

SPD voluntarily abandoned Capitol Hill’s East Precinct, and the neighborhood tone changed to one of collaboration. In a city physically divided by wealth and class, people came together around a common goal: ending police violence against the Black community.

Continue reading OPINION: CHOP Not the Beginning, and it’s Not the End

Bless This (Revolutionary) Mess

by Sarah Stuteville

A few days ago, while walking home from the “CHOP” (also known as the Capitol Hill Organized Protest) I stopped to talk to a neighbor, who in turn introduced me to her Boomer-age mom, who was visiting Seattle from a rural area of Washington State.

“You all gardening?” I asked, sucking air through the thick fabric of my face mask. “Actually … we just got back from the … CHOP. My mom wanted to see it,” my neighbor answered with the halting uncertainty many Seattleites use to describe this anarchic organism of a protest that has drawn fire — literally and figuratively — from everywhere.

I turned to the White, gray-haired woman in her plum-colored fleece and Costco sneakers — looking all the world like the star of the next “Karen” video on Twitter. I braced myself for what I assumed would be her pinched disdain for the grime, the chaos — the unfocused, raw wildness of these four blocks that just a few months ago symbolized ground zero for a gentrifying “new Seattle.” A neighborhood where million-dollar condos and cavernous breweries battled it out with the “old Seattle” of non-profit art spaces, low-lit gay bars, and church-basement AA meetings.

I was glad the lower half of my face was covered when I asked her politely, “What did you think of it?”

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The Never-Ending Resilience Required to Be Black in America

by NaKeesa Frazier-Jennings

Early on the morning of Monday, May 25, my husband and I got out of bed while the sky was still dark and drove to the beach. We are both fans of a good day trip, but due to the recent recommendations for the people in our state to stay in and stay safe from the coronavirus, we had not taken one in quite a while. My favorite form of exercise is walking, and I prefer to do it outside while enjoying fresh air and the many beautiful sights to see and experience throughout the area that I call home: the Pacific Northwest. I have countless pictures of the beautiful scenery and look at them repeatedly because they bring me so much joy. However, with so many parks and trails being closed as of late, exercising for the most part has had to be done inside of my house. So, sensing that I needed an outing of some kind, my husband asked: “Do you want to get up at 2 a.m. one day during the Memorial Day weekend and drive to the beach to watch the sunrise?” He was not even finished with his sentence before I yelled out a resounding “Yes!”

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CHOP Protesters Pleaded for Help and Received None

by Elizabeth Turnbull

In the early morning of Saturday, June 20, following two shootings directly outside of the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) barricades, fire department safety protocols and the pleas of volunteer medics and bystanders collided. 

At 2:19 a.m., bystanders called 911 after a young adult male was shot on 10th Avenue and East Pine Street.

Following the gunshots, protesters began clearing the street in front of Rancho Bravo restaurant in order to allow potential Seattle Fire Department (SFD) medical vehicles to enter after hearing confirmation, by monitoring live fire department dispatch communications, that a medical vehicle was coming to assist the victim, according to David Lewis, a fixture at the Seattle protests who was on site the night of the shooting.

“Everyone was clearing the way for all medical staff continuously,” Lewis told the Emerald. “Of course we want — we needed the medical staff, we needed them to be here and with that confirmation we were clearing all cars, all people.”

Continue reading CHOP Protesters Pleaded for Help and Received None

Know Your Role

by Jasmine M. Pulido

I should be out there.

But I can’t.

When I read about protests in the 1960s in my history class, I always imagined that I would’ve been out there if I had been alive then. My values were clear, and I would fight for them alongside my peers. Chained to something, chanting loudly or getting arrested. No hesitation, no question, no fear.

I didn’t think that there would be a moment 60 years later, when we would need to fight for these same rights. Again. Nor did I think it would happen in the middle of a pandemic with two young kids and an immunocompromised husband. As a result, we’ve been in pretty intense quarantine and will continue to be until the end of Phase 4.

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Local Millennials Have Second Thoughts About Raising Children in Chaotic Times

by Alexa Peters

It’s been widely reported for some time that birthrates in the U.S. are plummeting. In fact, according to a New York Times report in mid-2019, the birthrate was at the lowest level it had been in 32 years.

A dominant factor in this unprecedented decline in births is a cultural shift: millennials are choosing to have kids later than previous generations, if they’re even having families at all. After all, millennials — recently deemed the unluckiest economic generation — have a laundry list of good reasons why not to procreate. And in 2020, that list continues to grow.

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One Reported Dead, One Wounded in Overnight Capitol Hill Protest Zone Shooting

by JSeattle

(This article originally appeared on Capitol Hill Seattle Blog and has been reprinted with permission.)

One man was reported dead and another person was shot and wounded in an overnight shooting at the Capitol Hill protest zone.

Police have confirmed the shooting but have not released further details. It was not clear if any suspects were in custody.

UPDATE 10:10 a.m.: Seattle Police have confirmed CHS’s early reports on the shooting and say that a 19-year-old is dead and that there have been no arrests:

Continue reading One Reported Dead, One Wounded in Overnight Capitol Hill Protest Zone Shooting

POETRY: The streets are crying.

by Cecilia Erin Walsh 

daily burials without memorial. selective testing. 
arrogance and stupidity passing for leadership.
seclusion. isolation. hunger. masks on every face. 
furtive movements across the city. essential travel only. 
certain scarcity. overcrowded hospitals. 
layoffs. domestic violence and suicide rise. 
mental health crisis phone lines ring incessantly. 

Continue reading POETRY: The streets are crying.

Seattle University Faces Demands to End Relationship With SPD

by Josh Merchant

Seattle University is facing demands from students, faculty and staff to cut ties with the Seattle Police Department (SPD) amid ongoing protests over police violence, White supremacy, and the criminal justice system. The university currently has a relationship through its Department of Public Safety and its Criminal Justice program. 

On May 30, a letter signed by over 100 faculty and staff in Seattle University’s College of Arts & Sciences questioned the relationship between Public Safety and SPD. Some Seattle University (also “Seattle U” or “SU”) community members have also spoken up on Twitter and on Instagram — one Tweet calling for the university to end this relationship has received dozens of retweets and over 100 likes.

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OPINION: Riders Nationwide Have Called on Transit Agencies to Cut Ties With Police — King Co. Metro Listened

by Jason Austin

Born out of a fight against bus service cuts in 2011 the Transit Riders Union (TRU) is an independent, democratic, member-run union of transit riders organizing for mobility and transit justice in Seattle and King County. We recognize that the uprisings sweeping the nation flow from centuries of racial oppression, increasing economic inequality, and years of unheeded calls for reform and restitution. TRU stands with protesters in Seattle, Minneapolis, Louisville and many other communities across the country demanding health, safety, and freedom for Black people in America and demanding justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade and countless others killed by the police. Our members have spent the last three weeks using public transportation to travel to the protests. We were horrified to see our public transportation infrastructure being weaponized against the very people it was created to serve. 

Continue reading OPINION: Riders Nationwide Have Called on Transit Agencies to Cut Ties With Police — King Co. Metro Listened