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Black lives matter protests in new york city

The meaning of «black lives matter protests in new york city»

New York City has been the site of many Black Lives Matter protests in response to incidents of police brutality and racially motivated violence against black people. The Black Lives Matter movement began as a hashtag after the shooting death of African-American teen Trayvon Martin, and became nationally recognized for street demonstrations following the 2014 deaths of two African Americans, Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Garner was killed in the Staten Island borough of New York City, leading to protests, demonstrations, and work towards changes in policing and the law. Following the murder of George Floyd in Minnesota in 2020, the global response included extensive protests in New York City, and several subsequent changes to policy.

The Black Lives Matter movement began in 2013 at the end of the trial of George Zimmerman for the shooting death of African-American teen Trayvon Martin. It began has a hashtag in response to the "not guilty" verdict, and soon after appeared on a banner in a protest march in California.[1] A year later, the phrase and the movement surrounding it came to national attention following the shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the killing of Eric Garner on Staten Island, New York.[1]

There is a long history of civil unrest in New York City related to race and policing preceding the coalescing of Black Lives Matter, and the New York Police Department has been the subject of frequent criticism for its treatment of black citizens, including use of racial profiling, its stop-and-frisk program, and the use of mass arrests and other aggressive tactics against protesters.[2] There have been several cases of controversial use of force which attracted national attention, such as the shootings of Clifford Glover, Sean Bell, Eleanor Bumpurs, Gidone Busch, Amadou Diallo, Ramarley Graham, and Timothy Stansbury.[3]

On July 17, 2014, New York City Police Department (NYPD) officers approached Eric Garner on suspicion of selling single cigarettes without tax stamps. Garner denied selling cigarettes and told police he was tired of being harassed. Officers attempted to arrest Garner, and when Garner pulled his arms away, officer Daniel Pantaleo placed his arm around Garner's neck, using a prohibited chokehold, and wrestled him to the ground. As multiple police subdued him, Garner repeated the words "I can't breathe" 11 times while lying face down on the sidewalk. He eventually lost conscious and remained on the sidewalk for seven minutes while officers waiting for an ambulance. He was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital an hour later.[4][5] The medical examiner ruled Garner's death a homicide resulting from "[compression] of neck, compression of chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police."[6] Video footage of the event circulated widely on social media and in news media.[7]

The first public event protesting Garner's death was organized by Al Sharpton in Harlem. Joined by Garner's wife and mother, Sharpton condemned the actions of the officers involved and called for an investigation.[8] At the Harlem event and at a protest in Staten Island the same day, he highlighted the use of a chokehold, which is not allowed by the NYPD, as well as the lack of response to a person repeatedly telling police that "I can't breathe".[8] Sharpton also addressed attendees at Garner's funeral on July 23, calling for consequences for the officers involved.[9] On July 29, WalkRunFly, a company formed by Tony Award winners Warren Adams and Brandon Victor Dixon, created a guerrilla theater event in Times Square whereby a flashmob led by actor Daniel J. Watts gathered outside NYPD Headquarters to give a protest performance.[10][11] Sharpton led another march on August 23 on Staten Island, joined by an estimated 2,500 protesters.[12][13]

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