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Say Their Names

Tim Evans | Minnesota, United States

The day after George Floyd was murdered, people gather outside Cup Food, the small market where the incident took place. Rally goers soon marched three miles to the 3rd Police Precinct. After a window was broken and protesters began to damage squad cars, police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd, which drove tensions to a new peak.

On Monday, May 25, 2020--in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic--George Floyd was murdered by Minneapolis police officers. Unprecedented civil unrest quickly engulfed the Twin Cities. Confrontations between protesters and police continued to escalate. Widespread property damage was carried out, while officers indiscriminately deployed tear gas and rubber bullets against peaceful gatherings. On May 29, after officials declared a state of emergency, the Minnesota National Guard was mobilized to impose curfews. As protests continued, activists expanded their demands beyond the arrest of George Floyd’s killers, calling on white American society to atone for centuries of physical and economic violence dispassionately carried out against Black, Brown, and indigenous bodies. Some two weeks after the inciting murder, nearly 1,500 buildings had been razed, looted, or vandalized, hundreds of people were arrested, and a generation of youth had joined the movement to dismantle systemic oppression.

Say Their Names offers a visual record aimed at commemorating and furthering this particular phase of a long-standing movement for racial equity--a phase whose roots reside in Minneapolis but whose branches now span the world.

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