On May 25, 2020, George Floyd was murdered while in police custody, and the ensuing protests have brought Americans out into the streets in 584 cities and towns across the US. Sadly, despite first amendment protections, journalists have been increasingly under threat. The Committee to Protect Journalists has recorded over 300 press-freedom violations, as media members continue to get attacked and arrested just for doing their jobs. In their honor, we bring you the first ever Protest Edition of Storyhunter Staff Picks. Here are the six best videos we’ve seen that focus on George Floyd, the Black Lives Matter movement, and the complex cultural issues that have reached a boiling point in the United States.
What happens when a leader of the Black Lives Matter movement walks on the stage at a Trump rally? You’ll have to watch this remarkable video to find out. NowThis attended a pro-Trump rally where the organizers gave Hawk Newsome, the President of Black Lives Matter New York, 2 minutes on stage to explain his mission. This inspirational story is a testament to the power of communication, and a great piece of video journalism to boot. This was a rare opportunity for dialogue between two groups of people that rarely see eye to eye.
Brands are in an odd position right now with this movement. It isn’t quite their place to report on the marches happening around the world. Household names like Starbucks, Lego, and Ben & Jerry’s have put out statements, but haven’t created video regarding these protests yet. Airbnb made its position known by putting together this simple, 13 second-long video of just white text on a black screen saying “We believe in a world where everyone belongs. We reject all racism that stands in the way. We stand with #BlackLivesMatter.” They tweeted this out, along with the announcement of their donations totalling $500,000 to Black Lives Matter and the NAACP.
Even though hundreds of thousands of people around the world have been out protesting the murder of Geroge Floyd, we’re still in the middle of the pandemic. It’s no secret that protests and large public gatherings aren’t perfect for social distancing, so it’s important that we take precautions. QuickTake by Bloomberg talked with Mike Griffin, an activist in Minneapolis who has been handing out water, masks and hand sanitizer at protests. Anyone out advocating for justice should make sure that they’re doing their part to prevent the spread of COVID-19, while also making their voices heard.
Forbes resurfaced some clips of DeRay McKesson’s interview at their 2016 Under 30 Summit. McKesson is a civil rights activist and a face of Black Lives Matter. He talked with Adam Foss about the growth of the Black Lives Matter movement, and his relationship with Colin Kaepernick. Republishing old content enforces the fact that even though years have passed, this is still an issue that plagues our society.
Dexter Thomas, a correspondent for VICE News Tonight, marched with protesters on Sunday, May 31st. This was just two days after rioters looted and started fires all over the city. Dexter noted that there was a real sense of solidarity between the residents, who were cheering on their balconies, and the protestors walking below.
It’s been inspiring to see so many people come together in the name of racial equality. At first, the protests were limited to the United States. Now, there’s been protests in New Zealand, France, England, and many other countries around the world. Police brutality and racism aren’t exclusive to the USA. Reuters shows us in this global piece that this isn’t just a fight for justice in America. This is a fight for justice worldwide.
The importance of listening to protestors and people of color cannot be overstated. To create this video, The Guardian descended into the streets of New York City to walk with the protesters and give them a chance to state their views to the camera. We heard from activists that want the true nature of these protests to be documented, so that change can come from their efforts.
By Jake Watkins, Head of Stories