BLM protest attracts big crowd in Stratford

Protesters marched through the town to get their message across. Photo: Mark Williamson

An estimated 600 people turned up at Stratford’s Black Lives Matter demonstration today (Friday). The event started at 3pm at the bandstand on the Recreation Ground. Organisers, including teenagers Frazer Forbes, Rhianna Barnwell and Shianne Williams, addressed the gathered crowd, many of whom had made banners that they held aloft.

Frazer Forbes, one of the event organisers, welcomed demonstrators to the gathering on the Recreation Ground where he told of how his family had been the victims of racism over the years.                                                                                                                     Photo: Mark Williamson

In remembrance of George Floyd, the black Minnesota man whose death at the hands of the police inspired the latest BLM protests, the crowd knelt for nine minutes, the time Floyd was knelt on and killed.

The protest then marched around the town – going over the Tramway Bridge, up Bridge Street, and along the High Street, and Sheep Street before returning to the Rec.

An estimated 600 people gathered for the protest.                                        Photo: Mark Williamson

Despite the crowds, social distancing was largely adhered to, with most attending wearing face masks. There was a notable police presence, but the day appeared to go peacefully.

Not everyone was sympathetic to the protesters: a large group of white men gathered around the War Memorial; they told the Herald they were there to protect the monument from potentially being defaced. They dismissed the protest as being “not necessary”.

All generations gathered to show their support for the the Black Lives Matter demonstration.     Photo: Mark Williamson

Read more about this story in next week’s Herald.

  • jon coote

    why do you have to use the word WHITE when describing a group of men ??

    • 1jamessmith1

      jon coote if you refer to ‘a large group of white men gathered around the War Memorial;’it may simply be a statement of fact, unless any body that was there can advise other wise

      • Matthew Black

        If the use of the word white in a matter of fact way is okay then there should be nothing wrong with saying “a group of black men” in this or another article as it is (as you say) simply a “statement of fact”. But we all know that would never be said especially not in this climate. Given this the use of the word white is more divisive than constructive in this context and makes the problem worse.

        • 1jamessmith1

          Matthew you certainly challenge me in a good way here. Ultimatley a picture of the group of men would have been the ideal situation. Any news article has a purpose to inform as much as possible about the event were relivant and reasonable. This leads me to believe that some feel that the back ground of the group around the war memorial did not need mentioning. The difficulty being that being relivant and reasonable are not exact terms. I find it hard to believe that the back ground of the men around the memorial was mentioned simply to stir up emotion

      • jon coote

        would you use the description Black ,Asian, Muslim when describing a group of men its still a statement of fact but would you use it ??

        • jon coote

          my point being is why describe a group of people by there colour or religion why not say a group of youths, a group of men, a group of women etc describing there colour just fuels the racism we are tiring to eradicate

          • Vijar Yulkman

            It’s what happens when a group of Asians, Blacks or any other groups have done something, so why would we have one rule of one group and another rule for some other groups of people?
            When someone who doesn’t even act according to Islam has done something wrong the whole of the muslim world will take the blame for it. Double standard, if a black man does something the whole of the black community is tarnished.

            But when a black man / woman wins a gold medal it’s the “British”. Suddenly his origins don’t matter.

  • JD Hogg

    Those useless sacks of ***** that call themselves police that kneeled on command for this mob should hand in their notice first thing Monday. What a disgrace.
    NO POLITICS when in uniform. It’s that simple.

    • 1jamessmith1
      • JD Hogg

        I know damn well what it is called and it has no place in policing.

        They sit there doing nothing when gypos camp on public land, they send you a crime number by email if you get burgled, they set up an incident room when someone tuts at a homosexual and now they kneel down for ten minutes out of respect for a drugged up, violent career criminal.

        The police today are a disgrace and an insult to the law abiding.

        • Vijar Yulkman

          Which drugged up violent criminal are you referring to?

          • JD Hogg

            The African-American fella in the news every day. The gud boy getting the angel wings and halos in all the graffiti portraits. The guy that was high on Fentanyl and Methamphetamine when the police arrested him for using fake money – that one.

          • 1jamessmith1

            JD Hogg Any chance that you might have heard of George Floyd?He was killed over 20 measly US dollars, that in many states is close to 2 hours of legal min. He was killed for being **BLACK**. The officer directly responcible for his death is being charged

          • JD Hogg

            “He was killed for being **BLACK**”

            Oh lordy – that’s some hysterical nonsense. There is no evidence that his race played a part in the arrest or his treatment.

            He **died** (he was not ‘killed’) as a result of multiple factors, one of which was the (at the time) lawful restraint used by the police officer. Another factor was his intoxication with dangerous drugs. I know that this news hasn’t been widely reported in The Herald or on the BBC, but it doesn’t make it any less true.

            The newly cannonized St George was also a convicted criminal with a history of violence.

            Have you ever thought WHY police in America use force in the way they do? It’s because they have to police the hood, full of violent thugs exactly like Mr Floyd.

            Once the burning and the looting spree is over, the money, jobs and productive people will leave Minneapolis and it will become another Detroit. A miserable dump full of poverty and despair. And you’re right – all because some idiot tried to rip off a shop with fake 20s. Sad.

          • 1jamessmith1

            JD Hogg ref George Floyd’s death because of his not being white, my proof of concept


            Yes being high on drugs can cause a fatality, it is likely to take time. Heavilly pressing your knee on some one’s neck/ throat kills them a lot quicker.

            There is common belief that American police are a lot more heavy handed towards minority ethnic groups

          • JD Hogg

            You shouldn’t listen to the mayor, Jacob Frey. His politics are, at their core, anti-white.

            As for the American police being more heavy handed with non-whites – the studies don’t show this. In realistic simulations of a cross section of officers they were quicker to shoot at whites than blacks, whether armed or not. You also don’t hear about the police shootings of white people – to the media Justine Damond, Daniel Shaver and Tony Timpa don’t matter.

            The entire ‘systemic racism’ narrative is a myth – look up ‘Channon Christian and Christopher Newsom’ – the brutality that they suffered should have made international news. There should have been riots, but there wasn’t even a peep. You never even heard of it. For another, look up the ‘Wichita Massacre’. Again, extraordinary brutality by blacks against whites, again, a silent media. But there’s space for a career criminal drug addict thug in the Stratford Herald(!).

            It’s time to wake up and realise we are being sold a lie. It’s time to stand up for the truth.

          • 1jamessmith1

            JD Hogg time to agree to disagree. I’m sure that you are a good ol’ boy

          • JD Hogg

            My conscience is clear. Have a great day 👍

      • wicked messenger

        The police are not there to join the protest – their role is to police. Let’s say they are policing a demo by the English Defence League – would it be in order for them to join in by giving fascist salutes?

        • 1jamessmith1

          Wicked messenger if you and JD Hogg don’t like how the police are doing things, you each need to contact the regional commisioner responcible

        • Hugh Janus

          No, but if they had groveled down in the same way in front of the Football Lads in London last weekend then maybe the ‘violent disorder’ may not have happened.

  • Wet Letice

    Ah yes because trigger happy racist cops are a real issue in this country…..