Protesters line Highway 90 by Lighthouse Pier in Biloxi
As protests have turned to riots across the country, a peaceful protest took place in Biloxi Saturday afternoon.
The usual Saturday traffic along the beach on Highway 90 was especially loud this Saturday as drivers honked in support of a protest against racial injustice in front of the Biloxi Visitor’s Center.
After the death of George Floyd last week while being arrested by a Minneapolis police officer, two local sisters organized a protest against social injustice in hope of bringing awareness to their own community. Co-Organizer Cierra Deshields said, “We knew other people would like to join because it’s a great community and it would be awesome for everyone to come out. So we posted on Snapchat, Facebook. People shared it. We got posters, filled them out, started passing them out. And everyone just came together.”
Some of the posters held by demonstrators had Floyd’s last words written on them, “I can’t breathe,” words that have swept the nation. Co-organizer Ashton Bradley said, “I can’t breathe is just a cry of a black man, that’s it. Cry of a black man. That’s what he said in his last moments of his life. So we use that as a chant to let people know hear his cry, speak his name. George Floyd. That’s it.”
After nationwide protests for George Floyd’s death broke out into riots, Biloxi demonstrators wanted to make sure their protests stayed peaceful. They leaned on words from civil rights activists such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcom X to do so. “We just want the words to be heard by everyone. So we want everybody that’s pulling up out here, everybody to read those words and take that with them. And maybe they’ll think about it later on tonight and be like hey I want to be a part of the movement. Cause if you’re not a part of the solution then you’re a part of the problem.”
“In times like this it’s very important for all of us to step together and love and care for one another. That’s the only way we’re going to be able to get through times like these.”