Over the past week, the streets of New York City have been in uproar over the killing of black men and women throughout the country. The most recent involved the gruesome killing of George Floyd which was caught on camera. Since then, many people have taken to the streets to protest the injustices and call for change. One woman in particular, Theresee Tull, also took to the streets and believes this is the time for black leadership to step forward.
“As a woman of African descent, I don’t want to be represented by someone who is not like me.”
Theresee, a dancer and war historian, is in full support of Black men taking the role during this time to lead towards the change we need and deserve.
“My concern, my deepest concern is that black men are being seen as the victim instead of the fighter. We have enough imagery of our black men being thrown to the ground. Your black men and black women are pillars of the community and when you see those strong individuals go down like that it hurts your psyche, it hurts your inner child.”
The next step it seems will have to involve the movement going forward and not losing its current momentum. Protests have broken out around the world and while most have been peaceful, what stood out the most for Theresee, was the leadership of black men who made sure to deescalate instigators.
However she believes if the momentum stops here it will not be for the best.
“This is breadcrumbing, if we stop here we’re not going to get anything done. There needs to be more.”
Protests in the past have done wonders to draw the attention of world leaders. In moments like this, the next steps are what will be important to the future goal.
“I think we need to take our black youth and discipline them. We need to educate and discipline them. Once you discipline that you can use it very strategically. So my first goal would be weaponizing and disciplining the black youth and the black community.”
Black bodies and lives are what these protests are fighting for but it seems the black community as a whole is in disarray and requires stronger communication amongst each other.
“Communication with black communities. There are communities out there who already have the discipline, the knowledge and the weapons.”
Unity during this time with black communities worldwide is what will be the drive in moving these protests to the next level. Theresee is in support of reconnecting with black brothers and sisters all over under a nation represented by one flag.
“Unity across the board. The black red and green flag. It’s such an important black flag to this cause. I had to keep it up in the air because we had to know what it means. That flag is our unity, our safe place. Any black man can come under that flag and have family.”
Time will tell where this unrest will lead to as tensions continue to build between police and peaceful protestors. The hope for unity and leadership will fuel the next steps in change.