Hundreds of protesters gathered to demand justice for the murder of George Floyd and in solidarity with Black Lives Matter in Ogden on May 30
Speakers, including an 11-year-old girl, lined up along the steps of the Ogden/Weber Municipal Building to share their thoughts and feelings with the crowd. During their speeches, those who identified as white allies formed a protective barrier around speakers and protesters.
“As a mother and grandmother of brilliant black sons and grandsons, I am suffocated by the burden of the responsibility that I have to render that talk of the unwritten rules of how to make it home alive,” Monique Reed said, reading a poem she wrote. “I can’t breathe. I am angry.”
When Reed began to cry, four women standing around her extended their arms to give her support. Reed cried silently, as did many of the speakers and members of the crowd.
“I can’t breathe. I am paralyzed with disappointment at the death of my sons,” she said, concluding her poem.
Men, women and children wore shirts with the insignia “Black Lives Matter” and held signs showing support during the protest and during the addresses. Those gathered for the protest chanted “I can’t breathe” throughout the day.
Protesters also held a moment of silence for George Floyd’s wife. During these moments, the protest became tearful and emotional for many of the members.
Malik Dayo, the event organizer, asked the multitude to sing, “I can hear my brothers crying. I can’t breathe. Now I am in the struggle, and I can lead calling on the violence of the racist police. We ain’t gonna stop ’til people are free.”
Support and pride were abundant in the crowd as the chants and protest began to disperse.
“It was a powerful protest, and I am proud to be from Ogden,” attendee Allison James said.
This protest was Ogden’s largest Black Lives Matter protest, according to speakers at the event. Even with the many police cars and officers in the streets, the protest ended with all walking away peacefully.