On Monday and Tuesday night I was in the streets marching with #NYC2Ferguson protesters. On Tuesday night I started at 34th St walking looking for my fellow marchers, joined them at 42nd and made it up to 72nd with them chanting with hands up all the way, but by then my feet, thighs and vocal chords were screaming “No Mas” and I was freezing. Oh to be young again I could’ve made it all the way home to Harlem (the average age of the protestors had to be 26 and at least 200 of them [out of 3000] marched all the way from 14th St. to 125th to the State Office Building! Not to be totally out done by the youth, after I got home at 11:30p, I put on a heavier coat and proceeded to go to the grocery store and do all of my Thanksgiving shopping. Got home a lil after midnight and I could hear the helicopters and pretty much knew it was going down on 125. When I checked my Twitter feed so many of the protesters were there and saying they were hungry and thirsty and that they needed their phones to be charged (they started at 7pm). So I packed up the few apples, pears and oranges I had and grabbed some juice boxes and my portable charger and proceeded to 125th at 1am where there were still about 50 people giving some amazing mic checks. And even better, there were other locals who usually sell $1 waters that were giving out their bottles for FREE! It was a super amazing night! The reaction of others was definitely the most fortifying. I put this very cool girl who could pass for Laura Ingalls in a yellow cab b/c she had to go all the way from Harlem to Greenpoint in BK and she needed to use her credit card. When she got to Greenpoint and after talking to the man driving the cab about Ferguson and justice, don’t you know he didn’t even want to charge her because he wanted to march himself but had to work and has such a high appreciation for resistance movements. She paid him any way, but how incredible is that!
That night I think more than ever I realized just how much the “disenfranchised” of this city totally hold up the infrastructure of NYC and for that matter, this country. ALL the cabbies and bus drivers that honked for us, that gave us a thumbs-up were all people of color and didn’t mind one bit that we were holding up traffic. We passed some fancy restaurant around 64th St and the diners looked at us like we were kind of crazy, but as we passed the kitchen so many of the staff, men of color, discretely gave us a thumbs up. The guys selling pretzels and hot dogs who offered us food and water. Yep, they were “disenfranchised” too. It was a tear jerker moment for many of us that night and tonight, still so full of gratitude, humility and yes, rage, I wasn’t even sure how I was going to finish off my mom’s awesome stuffing. Well, no worries, I figured that out! Anyway I hope you’re having a happy and blessed one too! (Photo credit: Nicole Moore – With protesters as we marched pass illuminated flag in Times Square)