Hundreds of people gathered in dozens of communities throughout the country on Saturday to “combat state-sanctioned, racially-motivated violence against black people”.
The movement began on twitter with the hashtag #BlackoutAmerica, which called for a national day of action in response to the violence experienced by Black people in America. The activist, @_indigomoon on twitter, began organizing the event over social media. Soon other activists, many of them in their teens and 20s, began to organize rallies in their own cities.
Event organizer Kyron Battle of Newark said it was “important for this demonstration to be held because we need to constantly raise awareness on the disparities plaguing the urban communities. As occupants of the city I also feel it’s our duty to take control and make people aware.”
“#BlackOutOKC was organized by 3 17-year old women. I feel that more young voices like mine can really bring a change and show that these are serious issues,” said co-organizer Brionna Monae. “We need to keep speaking up and letting or voices be heard”.
#BlackoutOKC was amazing. Thanks to the 3 young ppl who made it happen @cocain_daisies @SAMURAIYAH @iAmBrionnaMonae pic.twitter.com/WWoRkBopk9
— #BLACKLIVESMATTER (@forcontrol_) August 15, 2015
The largest #BlackOutAmerica demonstration took place in DC. The rally was attended by musicians Janelle Monae and Jidenna, who performed their song Hell You Talmbout. The large crowd then marched and shutdown highway 395.
Janelle Monae & Jidenna @ #BlackoutDC pic.twitter.com/e1RaRNrRh6
— El Jefe (@alexr856) August 15, 2015
#BlackoutDC Protestors shut down 395 in DC today. pic.twitter.com/f1O2wA7Vfm
— DC Maryland Virginia (@DMVFollowers) August 15, 2015
Creator, @_indigomoon, confirmed over twitter that more actions and community outreach will be taking place over the next few weeks.