Across America on Thursday night, thousands of people marched to their state capitols, their public squares, their police precincts. Across America, they shouted “I can’t breathe”—a dying plea turned rallying cry. Police took arms against demonstrators—dressing in riot gear, shooting at the citizens who employ them with rubber bullets, or spraying tear gas to “disperse” the crowds. Across America, gunshots rang out. Across America, protestors held up the names of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, and dozens more on handmade signs, demanding justice too long delayed. They wore masks, knowledgeable of the pandemic that still grips this country, but pushed to act because of a more pernicious, more terrorizing epidemic: the ongoing, state-sponsored, state-enabled assault on black lives.
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