LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement is ready to force change in Louisville. One organizer, Shauntrice Martin, says it's about abolition. Martin spoke to Spectrum News 1 about how she wants to see protests for justice proceed, following the Breonna Taylor decision and her family's reaction on Friday.
The words Civil Rights Attorney Ben Crump used to describe the way Taylor's family feels about the decision are heartbroken, devastated, outraged, confused, and bewildered. This, after the Grand Jury decided not to charge any of the officers that killed Breonna Taylor with her death.
Martin goes as far as to say she feels slightly silly about it. She said, "I had a little bit of hope that something might be different this time, just like we have hope every time. So, I feel disappointed. I feel silly for thinking that for once Black women would be valued."
Now, Martin says radical change is necessary to fight racism. That goes beyond peaceful protests, to her. Martin says the people watching must be made to feel inconvenienced and uncomfortable.
"A lot of political leaders have given us small crumbs and expected us to be happy with that," she explains. BLM Louisville is demanding divestment from Louisville Metro Police (LMPD), and defunding the department, among many other changes.
"Without funding, they can't enact the militaristic tactics that they have used in Black communities historically," she adds.
"We have to have a more rigorous disruption of business as usual," Martin exclaims.
Here's the full list of demands Spectrum News 1 received from BLM Louisville:
- Immediately fire and revoke the pensions of the officers that murdered Breonna
- Divest from LMPD and invest in community building
- Immediate resignation (or impeachment) of Mayor Greg Fisher
- Metro Council ends the use of force by Louisville Metro Police Department (a. Police shootings are gun violence)
- A local, civilian, community police accountability council that is independent of the mayor’s office and LMPD with investigation and discipline power #CPAC
- The creation of policy to ensure transparent investigation processes