Local News

The protests will continue: Protester from NC BORN speaks out about election night protests

Posted November 4, 2020 6:28 p.m. EST
Updated November 5, 2020 2:59 p.m. EST

— Soon after the polls closed on election day, members of NC BORN took to the streets of downtown Raleigh to begin protesting.

"Whoever wins, we lose," some chanted, while others were seen burning a flag. Raleigh police declared it an unlawful assembly and arrested six protesters.

Members of NC BORN have been protesting since May 30.

Member Lauren Howell said a new president will change nothing because at the end of the day there is a mistrust that will be a problem no matter who is in office.

"We know there is mistrust between the community and the political system because the community has been asking for things from both parties and received little to nothing," she said. "Regardless of what happens, it’s important that we continue and maintain the idea that we need to put pressure on them."

NC BORN is asking for three things:

  1. Transparency from police
  2. Justice for the lives lost to police brutality
  3. Change in policies and legislation

When asked if they'd considering reaching out to Raleigh police or the Wake County Sheriff's Office for a discussion, Howell said no.

"No. I don’t think that a conversation with Raleigh police and the sheriff's department will ultimately do anything," she said.

Raleigh Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin said, "The city has taken several steps to address social justice issues."

She pointed to a partnership with Shaw University to "lead difficult community conversations and help develop a 10-point plan of action."

"We are taking steps to address these important issues so critical to our future. We are asking the community to work with us," Baldwin said.

Political science professor Dr. Emily Neff-Sharum said protesting is helpful in holding government officials accountable, but only when it's done without violence.

“I think they absolutely are effective," she said. "It absolutely can be it can be nasty it can be violent and brutal but it also serves a very important place."

Howell said, however, the anger and frustration of years of pain and injustice can sometimes carry over. She said those bad feelings manifest itself into broken windows and destroyed buildings.

"At the end of the day, those can be rebuilt, and what can’t be rebuilt is people's actual lives and loved ones,” said Howell.

Regardless of who wins the White House, Neff-Sharum said there could be protests from either side – and not just in North Carolina, but across the country.

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