On the heels of various victories this week, including the rescinding of a motion by the City of Seattle to end the consent decree with the Justice Department and the termination of citywide curfews in the City of Seattle during protests, Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County (BLM) announced that they are organizing a statewide march and general strike next Fri., June 12.
According to BLM Chair Ebony Miranda, “this will be a silent march organized by Black Lives Matter Seattle-King County and led by those who have been organizing, fighting and working for our communities.”
Despite this week’s victories, Miranda says that it is important to keep pushing forward in order to put an end to policies and practices that are detrimental to the overall safety and well-being of our community.
“We won these victories because people across the state demanded them,” said Miranda. “But we also feel that this progress is not enough and this isn’t the time to back down. We won’t be satisfied with these wins in a short-term sense, we need to make sure that these are long-term, sustained, transformational impacts of Black communities and our communities as a whole.”
Recognizing that we are in the middle of a pandemic, BLM says that aware that not everyone will be able to attend the march, and they might be criticized by some members of the community for holding a mass protest in the middle of a pandemic. But, according to Miranda, the consequences of doing nothing outweigh the risks of taking direct action.
“It’s important to emphasize that this was not an easy decision,” says Miranda. “This is not taken lightly. We know that people will claim that our efforts are going to increase the risks of harm on our community and allies by doing such an action during this time. But I feel that we are not taking risks, but really we’ve been put at risk.”
“Anti-blackness is a greater threat to our survival and racism in itself is its own pandemic, its killing us,” continued Miranda. “There’s never been a time in American history that Black people have not lived and died under the unrelenting boot of racism and systematic oppression. If we truly want to create something that we’ve never had before, then we need to be willing to do the things that we’ve never done before.”
BLM has not released full details of the march yet, which are forthcoming, but they plan to gather in preparation for the march at 1:00 p.m. next Fri., June 12 at Judkins Park and will begin marching at 2:00 p.m.