Miami, June 4 (IANS) A ‘funeral procession’ of more than 300 cars travelled through South Florida to mourn the death of African-American man George Floyd in police custody
The protest, which was organized by the Created Out of Love church, began on Wednesday in Hallandale Beach and ended in the city of Miramar, 32 km north of Miami, reports Efe news.
Following the symbolic hearse that led the convoy, hundreds of vehicles parked in front of the Miramar police station with the names of African-American people who have died at the hands of authorities written on the cars.
Among those names were Emmett Till, Sandra Bland, Dane Scott, Clifford Glover, Breonna Taylor, and hundreds of others.
Priest Johanne Wilson said that they had more than 200 names of people who died at the hands of racism and that is something they must change.
She also added that the car symbolized the death of racism and it will become more than just a symbol. It will be reality for everyone .
The rally was attended by Miramar Police chief Dexter Williams and city mayor Wayne Messam, among others, who asserted that what happened to Floyd was “unacceptable”.
The organizers reiterated to all those present that the protests must “take practical steps” and asked them to vote to “change the systemic racism that is embedded into this country”.
They also encouraged them to participate in the census, which takes place once every 10 years in the US, to ensure that each community receives its money.
Pastor Terrance Wilson added that if people wanted to see change in their community, they have to be counted in the census because it’s not only that voting matters, but being counted as a US citizen is important as well.
Miami also witnessed peaceful anti-racism protests for the fifth consecutive day.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis thanked the actions of peaceful protesters who “engaged in lawful first amendment activity” in recent days.
However, as in other states of the country, many of these protests ended in altercations and looting, such as those in Tampa and Orlando, where 90 and 28 arrests took place on Wednesday respectively.
“The gatherings that have been occurring statewide there have been respectful gatherings of large crowds with isolated instances of individuals who take the opportunity to exploit these events usually at night to engage in unlawful activities,” said DeSantis.
The mayor of Orlando, Buddy Dyer, announced that he will implement a much more restricted curfew that will begin at 8 pm.
The protests in Florida are not as big as those in other regions of the country, such as Washington D.C., where President Donald Trump summoned the National Guard.
DeSantis announced that he will send a total of 500 Florida National Guard troops.