3 minute read

OKLAHOMA CITY — With repetitive killings of black people at the hands of police in the U.S., the pain and anger among Black people and those who consider themselves allies continues.

Wednesday night about 80-100 people gathered at NW 23rd and Classen to protest the decision of a grand jury in Kentucky to not charge any of the Louisville Police officers in the death of Breonna Taylor who died from police gunfire in her apartment.

“Taylor, an emergency medical worker, was shot multiple times by white officers who entered her home on a no-knock warrant during a narcotics investigation,” reported the Associated Press. “State Attorney General Daniel Cameron, however, said the investigation showed the officers announced themselves before entering. The warrant used to search her home was connected to a suspect who did not live there, and no drugs were found inside.”

Louisville streets filled with protesters who clashed with police only hours after the announcement Wednesday.

The protest in Oklahoma City did not draw a police response and protesters did not tie up traffic as they have done before.

“Sad to say”

The brutal and slow death of George Floyd on video in Minneapolis earlier in the year resulted in large protests across the U.S including Oklahoma City.

May 30 that same weekend in Oklahoma City, large protests flared here due to perceived similarities of police treatment of Black and brown people in Oklahoma City.

Eric Parker was there at 23rd and Classen the night of May 30 and has been to other protests around the city since including Wednesday where he was back at the intersection again.

He talked to Free Press about why.

“It’s sad that I have to say I’m not surprised,” said Parker. “We’ve almost been conditioned to expect these kinds of outcomes when it comes to this kind of thing. Rana Taylor was murdered in her home.”

Parker continued, “the murderer saw there’s no justice whatever your definition of justice is….”

“So here we are, again, 23rd and Classen, and it’s getting repetitive. You know, I don’t want to be out here every time I but it’s what has to be done.”

He said that he hears people say that they have a mother, sister, etc. and so they come out to protest the mistreatment of Black women.

“I don’t need a mother and sister to be out here to support black women,” said Parker. “I have black women in my life. I have black women that fight for me, I have black women that are students. I have black women that are colleagues. It’s just what needs to be done.”

“Really tired”

Another Black young adult Free Press interviewed said she was out protesting because “we’re really tired of police killing our people.”

“And we’re really tired of having to be worried about what the police are going to do to our sons.”

She said that Black people have to “go before judges that don’t listen to us – that don’t care about us.”

“We’re tired of having our people locked up for no reason,” she said. “And then they’re getting the death penalty without even having as much as DNA evidence. So we’re tired of that.”

“Life is precious”

Garland Pruitt, president of the Oklahoma City chapter of the NAACP told us that he came out to demonstrate against the decision to not hold two of the officers involved in the shooting accountable.

This the whole thing that’s going on nationwide, right now, there’s everything to do with injustice, everything to do with a lack of holding fools accountable for making the decisions that they make. Life is precious,” said Pruitt.


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