“Even though there were 300 people on our original march and we had smaller people today, I don’t care if I was out here alone with a microphone.”
NEW ORLEANS – A rally was held in Armstrong Park, New Orleans on Thursday after the Kentucky Attorney General decided not to bring charges against police officers for the death of Breonna Taylor.
The mobilization of millennials brought about two dozen people to the park. Though smaller than the protests in New Orleans following the death of George Floyd, organizers say the meaning of the rallies has not changed.
“This is not going to go away anytime soon,” said J. Christopher Johnson, founder of Mobilizing Millennials. “As long as I am a black man who is part of the marginalization and disenfranchisement of what is going on in America, my struggle will not stop. Even though there were 300 people on our original march and we had smaller people today, I don’t care if I was out here alone with a microphone. “
Johnson and other attendees at the rally encouraged attendees to vote for candidates who will make changes. There are fears that what happened to Taylor could happen in New Orleans, where arrest warrants are still legal under state law. The city council passed a resolution calling on the NOPD to reconsider its use.
Marc Morial, former New Orleans mayor and current president of the National Urban League, believes that arrest warrants should only be used in extreme cases and require approval from the police chief.
“The risk of life, the risk of problem is high if you scare people at their door by simply breaking the door open. This is the theory of a warrant without knocking, without announcing you are the police,” he said.
Morial calls Taylor’s case a miscarriage of justice.
“While an officer was charged with a crime, no officers were charged with the death of Breonna Taylor. This suggests in the eyes of this prosecutor and that grand jury that the shooting was somehow justified, which I firmly oppose, ”he said.
Majeeda Snead, a lawyer and professor of law at Loyola University in New Orleans, agrees.
“The main thing is to look at the purpose of a no-knock warrant in the past and weigh that against the lives lost. I mean Breonna Taylor’s name, I mean we know her name. But there were so many others who died as a result of those warrants, ”said Snead.
Snead calls the announcement not to charge officers in Taylor’s death a “travesty”. But says this is undoubtedly a historic moment in the struggle for racial justice as Taylor’s death has national implications.
“I honestly think this is a new phenomenon. And I think the advent of social media and just people who are able to communicate across cities, states, and countries have allowed us to see the practices not just in our city or in our state, but nationally too Level to examine, “she said.
The time has come for those who will examine these practices and march for justice.