The Honour Their Names protest against police brutality was organized by a recent graduate of Montpelier High School. The crowd filled the State House lawn and, at her request, silently went to their knees for more than eight minutes - the length of time it took for George Floyd to die with Derek Chauvin’s knee allegedly pressed into his neck.
“Riby-Williams then asked the crowd to take a knee and observe 8 minutes and 42 seconds of silence – the length of time it took George Floyd to die while Minneapolis police officer and alleged murderer Derek Chauvin pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck. Most knelt. Silence was total. At the conclusion of the minutes of silence, Riby-Williams said “At this time I would like to invite any black person who wants to be heard to come up and express themselves.” Moments later Vermont Daily asked Riby-Williams one-on-one if white people were welcome to speak, too. She shook her head. We asked why. “I think we’re silenced,” she explained. This is an opportunity for white people to hear the perspectives of black people, she said."
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