More than 20,000 rally peacefully in Chicago, demanding justice and racial equality
CHICAGO - Thousands of people protesting police brutality marched and rallied together in Chicago on Saturday, the latest in more than a week of protests over the death of George Floyd at the hands of Minneapolis police.
Some of Saturday's protesters marched to Seward Park, which is near Cabrini Green. Other demonstrators marched downtown. The crowd sizes were estimated to be over 20,000.
A flower shop owner gave protesters hundreds of roses and daisies in memory of George Floyd, the color white for peace. Demonstrators chanted loudly while a trail of cars beeped continually. Pockets of protests from afternoon to evening popped all over the city.
Thousands of people packed Union Park and Seward Park on the Near North Side demanding justice for all.
Downtown, Chicago police, assisted by the National Guard, lined street corners in great numbers following behind peaceful marches.
And Saturday night, a rally held outside Roberto Clemente High School in Humboldt Park where the first speaker was a parent. She said the mistrust of police starts in the schools.
“I wish everybody would’ve brought their kids . You could see in people’s heads like man I need to be a part of this., like it’s crazy, just so many on fire. And there was just so many people who wasn’t black here, you know what I’m saying,” said Christopher Kirkendoll.
Grant Park was shut down Saturday night. Protesters had been there earlier in the evening.
National Guard troops and police were blocking many routes in and out of downtown on Saturday, leading to massive delays for people trying to get to work or home.
A massive protest on Friday night echoed with calls to defund the Chicago Police Department.
On Friday, Mayor Lori Lightfoot earlier in the night encouraged the continuance of peaceful protests while outlining plans to protect neighborhoods from violence, riots and looting as more protests are planned for the weekend.
The mayor says the 9 p.m. curfew will last through the weekend, while the city is opening up Grant Park and Union Park for protesters to make sure the gatherings are contained. Three-hundred city trucks will be used across the city, along with extra private security guards, to prevent businesses from targeted.