Connect with us

Black Lives Matter: Moving Forward

Greetings from the Burr Magazine

Black Lives Matter: Moving Forward

Black Kent students share reaction to social movements that shaped summer of 2020

In Collaboration with Uhuru Magazine

Words by Zaria Johnson, Editor-in-Chief of Uhuru Magazine

Photos by Anna Lawrence with assistance from Maya Little, photographer for Uhuru Magazine

Black squares, raised fists and ACAB Twitter memes. 

The Black Lives Matter movement has always been more than that. 

Though the Black Lives Matter protests that spread across the nation during the summer of 2020 have long since been removed from headlines, front pages and newscasts, the fight for justice and an end to police brutality continue.

Movement leaders hold conversations discussing safety in Black communities, calls to action and demands for legislative change. 

“I would just describe [Black Lives Matter] as a huge movement that has a lot of moving parts,” senior journalism major Alex Gray says. “It’s not just signing petitions, it’s not just going out and protesting. It’s also, like, checking your family, checking your closest friends. It’s making sure that people feel safe around you and around the people that you’re around.” 

“It’s not just signing petitions, it’s not just going out and protesting. It’s also, like, checking your family, checking your closest friends. It’s making sure that people feel safe around you and around the people that you’re around,” Gray says. 

The summer of 2020 highlighted a lot of non-Black allies showing support for the Black Lives Matter movement, including protests held on Kent State’s campuses, and it is important that the community stays united to enact real change. 

“Everything about it is just uplifting in my personal view, and people that [were] involved in it … were so passionate, because our lives are really being taken from us just, like, casually,” sophomore DMP major CeeJay Scott says. “When it comes to a group of people such as us Black people, we don’t really see justice, we really don’t see fairness, so I just hope overall the country just does better, and people actually start learning and waking up about these situations.”

“When it comes to a group of people such as us Black people, we don’t really see justice, we really don’t see fairness, so I just hope overall the country just does better, and people actually start learning and waking up about these situations,” Scott says.

There is still a long way to go for equality, and the first step is educating people about the meaning behind and goals of the movement, junior VCD major Mariah Johnson says.

“I just want it to get better, even if it’s just a little bit. I just want to keep having stepping stones to see things get better. People actually trying to be a part of it and see what’s actually going on because so many people just try to pretend like nothing’s happening. And there’s a lot happening. Even if it doesn’t affect them as a person or it doesn’t affect their life at all I feel they should still try to understand it,” Johnson says. “As someone who’s mixed it’s been kind of rough on my end just because some people treat me like, ‘Oh, you’re too, white to be black and too black to be white.’”

“I just want it to get better, even if it’s just a little bit. I just want to keep having stepping stones to see things get better. People actually trying to be a part of it and see what’s actually going on because so many people just try to pretend like nothing’s happening. And there’s a lot happening. Even if it doesn’t affect them as a person or it doesn’t affect their life at all I feel they should still try to understand it,” Johnson says.

Black students and Black people should not have to live in fear. The Black experience during the 2020 protests and afterward is a lot more than a trendy hashtag. The movement is about protecting Black lives, and that needs to continue to be amplified. 

“I hope that at some point, I don’t have to say that my life matters,” Gray says. “I would like it to be a known fact, and it’s not right now.” 

Scroll down to hear Gray, Scott, Johnson and G.P. speak about the Black Lives Matter movement.

G.P., Digital Sciences Major, Senior

“When we have Black Lives Matter protests that are tearing down our cities and burning down stuff and rioting and tearing down our own communities. That’s not what the Black Lives Matter movement is and what it should represent. But, when we have peaceful protests and we say, ‘hey, police, can we denounce police brutality?” That is what the Black Lives Matter movement should be and what it should stand for.”

Alex Gray, Journalism Major, Senior

“I think that it’s been a very long road for me to kind of figure out where I fit within the Black Lives Matter movement as a journalist as a black journalist specifically. Even now there are times where I don’t know if I’m quote-unquote allowed to speak on things as they happen, or if my activism is best to use more with my writing.”

CeeJay Scott, Digital Media Productions Major, Sophomore

“How would you feel if somebody just was walking down the street, they see your child, and they decide just to kill them. How would you feel? That is basically what it is because even though we don’t really know these people personally, we see them as actual people because that’s what they are. They are people, and as humans, we automatically have empathy for others. And if somebody looks like me, and they’re in a bad position, I’m going to feel some type of way. Whether that’s I want to help them or whether that’s enraged because what happened to them.“

Mariah Johnson, VCD Major, Junior

“I was really happy to see so many people standing up for the Black Lives Matter movement. But I was also sad to see the other people who took advantage of all the craziness going on who were robbing stores and everything because I feel like that makes people think that’s what it’s about when that’s not what it’s about at all.”

SUPPORT STUDENT MEDIA

Hi, I’m Holly Liptak, a senior journalism student from Akron and the editor-in-chief of The Burr this semester. My staff and I are committed to bringing you interesting, humorous and hard-hitting stories that tap into current events, trends and the lives of those who have made a home in Kent, Ohio. We are full-time students and hard-working journalists. While we get support from the student media fee and earned revenue such as advertising, both of those continue to decline. Your generous gift of any amount will help enhance our student experience as we grow into working professionals. Please go here to donate.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

More in Greetings from the Burr Magazine

  • Greetings from the Burr Magazine

    Live from Kent, Ohio

    By

    Local musicians play on despite the disappearance of live shows Words by Grace Marie Burton, Photos...

  • Greetings from the Burr Magazine

    It’s the Little Things

    By

    Embracing the everyday during challenging times Words by Molly Heideman, Illustration by Paige Gaskins On Jan....

  • Greetings from the Burr Magazine

    Behind the Mask

    By

    What is the Emotion Behind the Mask? Words by Annie Zwisler; Photo Story by Peiyu Liu...

Facebook

Trending

Staff Playlists

Playlists

Playlist: Heartbreak Songs

By February 27, 2021

Playlists

Playlist: On Our Radar

By February 13, 2021

Playlists

Playlist: The End Of An Era

By December 12, 2020

Playlists

Playlist: The End of The World

By December 5, 2020

Playlists

Playlist: Moments In Movies

By November 14, 2020

Recent Stories

Season of Justice

Evelyn Kay Day

By May 11, 2021

Entertainment Analysis

Dead Poets Society

By May 11, 2021

The Art Outlet

My Journey As An Artist

By May 5, 2021

Celestial Conversations

Taurus Season

By May 5, 2021

Talking With Taylor

Trying Budget-Friendly Recipes

By April 30, 2021

Picture Books Aren't Just For Kids

Bridge To Terabithia

By April 29, 2021

A Step Forward

A Step Forward #6

By April 27, 2021

Season of Justice

Esther Hollis And “Crime Junkie”

By April 26, 2021

FEATURES

Off The Hook

By April 23, 2021

Greetings from the Burr Magazine

Black Lives Matter: Moving Forward

By April 7, 2021

Celestial Conversations

April Forecast!

By April 6, 2021

GUEST BLOGGERS

Kent Love Blooms Every Spring

By April 5, 2021

Picture Books Aren't Just For Kids

“Charlotte’s Web”

By April 1, 2021

Real, Good, Human

Feed Your Soul, Feed Your Pocket

By March 31, 2021

A Step Forward

A Step Forward #5

By March 30, 2021

Celestial Conversations

What Do The Planets Represent In Astrology?

By March 23, 2021

GUEST BLOGGERS

Coffee Connoisseur

By March 22, 2021

Talking With Taylor

Ways I Relieve Stress

By March 19, 2021

Talking With Taylor

Ways I Relieve Stress

By March 19, 2021

Picture Books Aren't Just For Kids

The Books of Roald Dahl

By March 18, 2021

A Step Forward

A Step Forward #4

By March 17, 2021

Real, Good, Human

New Beginnings and Old Memories

By March 17, 2021

FEATURES

Can Totemism Save The World?

By March 15, 2021

FEATURES

Thrift Store Gentrification

By March 12, 2021

GUEST BLOGGERS

(Almost) Legally Blonde

By March 12, 2021

Entertainment Analysis

Entertainment Analysis: Fight Club (1999)

By March 11, 2021

The Art Outlet

Everyday Art

By March 10, 2021

Celestial Conversations

Zodiac Signs And What They Represent

By March 9, 2021

GUEST BLOGGERS

Terry And Reality

By March 8, 2021

Talking With Taylor

My Typical Day At Kent State

By March 5, 2021
To Top