Black Lives Matter, perhaps the most significant new American social movement since the Occupy phenomenon, coalesced following the 26 February shooting of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida, and the acquittal six months later of his killer, George Zimmerman.
Three community organizers — Opal Tometi of Brooklyn, New, York, Alicia Garza of Oakland, California, and Patrisse Cullors of Los Angeles — gave the movement its name and form.
But it was the police killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri on 9 August 2014 that gave the movement national attention, when organizers headed to Missouri and helped organizer protests that brought the focus of the world’s media to bear.
It was Patrisse Cullors along with another activist who seized the stage from Bernie Sanders during a Town Hall forum in Phoenix in July 2015, drawing yet more attention on the movement.
In this documentary from Dutch public television we get a closer look at Cullors, and the complexity of a figure at the center of the movement. It’s a fascinating story.
From VPRO Backlight:
Black Lives Matter
In 2013 in Sanford, Florida, vigilante George Zimmerman was found not guilty of the murder of 17-year-old African American Trayvon Martin. As a result, the struggle against police violence flared up under the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter and turned into one of the biggest grassroots movements in the United States. VPRO Backlight talked to co-founder Patrisse Cullors about the various forms of violence against black citizens, and why resistance is essential.
Director: Nirit Peled
Research: Henneke Hagen