'This is not going to stand' — Springfield socialists protest death of Tyre Nichols in Memphis
Sunday night saw another protest by the Springfield branch of the Party of Socialism and Liberation. This time, demonstrators went downtown to denounce the death of Tyre Nichols after he was severely beaten by Memphis, Tennessee police earlier this month.
On January 7, five Black police officers in Memphis, Tennessee were captured on camera severely beating a 29-year-old Black man, Tyre Nichols. Nichols died of his injuries three days later.
On Friday night Memphis police released graphic video from body cameras and surveillance posts showing the officers’ conduct. KSMU viewed the video shortly after its release; it shows Nichols being savagely hit, kicked, pepper-sprayed, chased and struck with a taser. In the video, Nichols calls out for his mom.
Late last week, the five officers who beat Nichols were charged with second-degree murder and other crimes.
Two nights after the video release prompted mostly peaceful protests around the United States, the Springfield branch of the Party of Socialism and Liberation put on a public event to express their view of solidarity with communities of color.
The small crowd chanted, "No justice, no peace, no racist police."
Protester Autumn Reynolds was one of about 20 demonstrators who turned out amid 24-degree weather, gusts of wind — and freezing mist that slicked up the Park Central Square pavement.
“We really just want to show up and show that this is not going to stand" she said. "We’re really pushing to try to get public support for the conviction of the five police officers.”
Speakers at the protest linked issues with race relations and policing to their view of larger economic and political struggles in American society.