It takes a certain type of person to build a coalition which, after picking-up momentum, eventually may evolve into a movement. Chicagoan Quovadis Green, community activist and member of One Chicago, is one such individual.
Credited with organizing the protest of the Chicago police shooting incident involving Laquan McDonald which, as of early evening on Tuesday, November 24, has now gone viral, he organized Tuesday night's protest from Roosevelt to Millennium Park and Wednesday's gathering starting at DePaul University/Loop campus, Jackson and State and, again, planning to end in Millennium Park by this year's Christmas Tree.
Of his vision, the 24-year-old Green said "We see all this corruption by police officers to cover-up crimes and see the great need to develop more trustworthy relations between the police and the public."
In 2014, the 17-year-old McDonald, for those who have not been following the media-sensation story, was shot 16 times by police for not surrendering despite the fact the only weapon he had was a folded-up pocket knife.
On Tuesday, prosecutors charged Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke with first-degree murder. Yet leading up to the arrest much controversy swirled about the release of the dash com video footage from Van Dyke's squad car as it took a court order to mandate its release versus it being turned over upon request.
Green hastily mounted his forces, who came out in, for all intense purposes, what amounted to a peaceful protest on Tuesday night.
As Green reiterated, "I was down there in Millennium Park until 4 am and I'll probably be there that long tonight."
The goal, according to Green, is more than just to raise awareness, it's to impact change.
Also attending Wednesday's night protest starting at DePaul University was Tio Hardiman of Violence Interrupters, who previously has said his group is calling for Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy's resignation due to the fact it took a year for charges to be brought against Van Dyck. He wants to know why they waited so long for the truth to come out.
Without activists, one has to wonder whether the truth would ever come out? Without those persons willing to fight for a cause or causes they believe in, many wrongs would remain covered up and many human rights would be inhumanely forsaken.
As many already know, President Obama got his start in politics on Chicago's South Side as a community activist prior to earning his law degree. Other notable activists include: Bono, Leo DiCaprio, Sean Penn, Paul McCartney, Stella McCartney, Charlize Theron, Susan Sarandon, Sheryl Crow, and the list goes on and on...
According to Merriam Webster's Dictionary, what separates an ordinary citizen from a community activist is that he/she takes direct vigorous action especially in support of or opposition to one side of a controversial issue. The action component is key. Where many an individual may sit around and think of steps that need to be taken in response to a crisis situation, there are those who literally take action that may be controversial as it goes against the mainstream of consciousness. Yet, without such fearless folk, nothing would ever change in society. No extreme wrongs would be righted for the status quo would forever remain the same.
So was we approach Thanksgiving eve, we give thanks to the activists within our midst who have the courage, tenacity and logistical fortitude to move our civilization forward and face adversity head-on.
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