Our live coverage of the Black Lives Matter protests has moved here.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said the United States past few days have been "traumatic" while addressing the demonstrations in the city over George Floyd’s death.
Garcetti said the struggle has been particularly difficult because of how the novel coronavirus pandemic has affected demonstrations.
“Powerful, peaceful, passionate protest is who we are as Americans,” Garcetti said. “No change has ever come to this country without the power of that protest, without our collective voices saying, this is our nation, we belong here, this is a part of it and we demand that this nation treat us all equally for the justice that we deserve.’”
Garcetti talked about making progress in racial injustice by having quiet conversations at dinner tables, in the workplace, or in neighborhoods.
“Racial justice is something that we all own,” he said.
Garcetti previously announced that Los Angeles will invest $250 million in communities of color. He added that $150 million in cuts from the Los Angeles Police Department’s budget “is not enough,” as he addressed the need for advancing police reform.
The Boston Red Sox say have apologized to former Minnesota Twins outfielder Torii Hunter, who said he was subject to racial abuse while in Boston or playing in the city's famed Fenway Park.
Hunter, a five-time All Star and nine-time Golden Glove winner, told ESPN last week that has "been called the N-word in Boston 100 times. … From little kids, and grownups right next to them didn’t say anything."
Hunter said he negotiated no trade-clauses in his contracts while playing professional baseball so he did not have to go to Boston.
“Torii Hunter’s experience is real,” the Red Sox statement says. “If you doubted him because you’ve never heard it yourself, take it from us, it happens. Last year there were 7 reported incidents at Fenway Park where fans used racial slurs. Those are just the ones we know about.
Hunter is not the first professional athlete to complain about racial abuse in Boston. Baltimore Orioles outfielder Adam Jones told USA Today in 2017 he was racially abused and had peanuts thrown at him while playing in Boston. Celtics guard Marcus Smart told ESPN's The Undefeated, the network's platform that covers the intersections of race, sports and culture, he's been called the n-word in the city.
The Red Sox have a troubled past when it comes to race. They became the last Major League Baseball team to integrate in 1959, 12 years after Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers.
However, the team has been attempting to combat that narrative in recent years. Yawkey Way, an iconic street named after the late Red Sox owner who resisted integration, was renamed in 2017 because of Yawkey's racist legacy.
Both Hunter and Jones posted on Twitter in support of the Red Sox's statement published Wednesday.
The A&E television network is stopping production of "Live PD," a show that follows police officers around the nation, amid the ongoing protests, the network said in a statement.
Here's what A&E said:
“This is a critical time in our nation’s history and we have made the decision to cease production on Live PD. Going forward, we will determine if there is a clear pathway to tell the stories of both the community and the police officers whose role it is to serve them. And with that, we will be meeting with community and civil rights leaders as well as police departments.”
A&E's decision comes shortly after "Cops" was canceled after a 30 year-run. A spokesperson for Paramount Network said that it has no "current or future plans for it to return."
Houston,Texas, Mayor Sylvester Turner signed an executive order on police reform on Wednesday.
At a news briefing announcing the order, Turner said he was listening to concerns "and taking some immediate steps which we believe will create a much better system for everyone involved."
Here are some of the things included in the order, according to Turner:
- Officers should only use the amount of "objectively reasonable force necessary" to protect themselves or others when dealing with members of the community, suspects or prisoners.
- Officers should use de-escalation techniques to avoid or minimize use of physical force.
- De-escalation techniques should be continuously developed and made part of the training delivered to all police officers.
- Each officer should make their intent to arrest or search a person clear. They need to identify themselves as a police officer before using force.
- Prior to the use of "deadly force," officers need to exhaust all other "reasonably available alternatives," such as other de-escalation techniques.
- If de-escalation and other ways to reduce the conflict are not successful, the use of deadly force by a firearm can only be used when an officer believes that it is necessary to protect themselves or others from "serious bodily injury or death."
- Police officers will not be allowed to shoot at a moving vehicle unless it is to protect themselves or others from "serious bodily injury or death."
- All uses of deadly force by a police officer will be reported to the Independent Police Oversight Board.
- Techniques such as a neck restraint, or carotid artery holds – also known as chokeholds – whether by using an object, or a body part, are prohibited.
- Officers cannot place their knee, foot or body weight on the neck of a suspect to control, or contain the suspect’s movement.
- Police officers are prohibited from executing a no-knock warrant, unless the warrant has been approved in writing.
- Any officer present and observing another police officer using force "that is beyond that which is reasonable under the circumstances," is required to prevent the use of such force.
Philonese Floyd, George Floyd's brother, joined CNN to discuss his testimony today in the US House of Representatives.
Floyd said he went to Capitol Hill because he "wanted to let them know about how the officer put his knee on my brother's neck, and how my brother pleaded for his life."
"I talk for a while trying to let them know that my brother, his death will not be in vein. I didn't want him to be another guy on a t-shirt. I told them how much I loved him, how much he was a role model to people growing up around me," he said.
When asked by CNN's Don Lemon if his message got across, Floyd said: "I think they heard me loud and clear."
Benjamin Crump, the Floyd family attorney who appeared beside Philonese Floyd during the interview, said he came away encouraged.
"For the first time, I believe that we have a real opportunity of getting people to come from across the aisle and change the culture and behavior of people across America," Crump said. "We went to congress because we know if there's a change in policing in America, it has to start at the top. And so, the lawmakers even on the other side of the aisle were literally saying that we have to do something about this.
Crump said key issues mentioned were qualified immunity for police, chokeholds and the use of body cameras
"That's what the George Floyd law is going to speak to," Crump said. "This is our time. This is our time."
US Sen. Kamala Harris said she and her colleagues are calling for an "immediate review" of the use of rubber bullets by police following their use last week by authorities to dispel protesters across the country.
Rubber bullets, flash bang grenades and tear gas are among some of the "less lethal" options commonly used by police trying to disperse large crowds.
Rubber bullets have the potential to maim, blind, disfigure and even kill people.
When aimed at the legs, rubber bullets can stop a dangerous person or crowd from getting closer to a police officer, Dr. Douglas Lazzaro, a professor and expert in eye trauma at NYU Langone Health, told Kaiser Health News.
But when fired at close range rubber bullets can penetrate the skin, break bones, fracture the skull and explode the eyeball, he said.
NBA superstar LeBron James and a group of other black athletes and entertainers are starting a group to help protect the voting rights of African Americans, The New York Times reported.
The organization is called "More Than a Vote.” Its purpose is to help get African Americans to register to vote and to cast a ballot in November.
Trae Young, Skylar Diggins-Smith, Jalen Rose, Draymond Green, and Udonis Haslem are some of the current and former basketball players joining to help the organization. Alvin Kamara of the NFL's New Orleans Saints also joined, according to the Times.
“Because of everything that’s going on, people are finally starting to listen to us -- we feel like we’re finally getting a foot in the door,” James said in a phone interview with the Times. “How long is up to us. We don’t know. But we feel like we’re getting some ears and some attention, and this is the time for us to finally make a difference.”
James added: “Yes, we want you to go out and vote, but we’re also going to give you the tutorial. We’re going to give you the background of how to vote and what they’re trying to do, the other side, to stop you from voting.”
Amber Ruffin, a comedian and writer on "Late Night with Seth Meyers," has been sharing stories about troubling experiences with police as a black woman on the show.
Ruffin joined CNN's Anderson Cooper to share some of her stories and talk about why she's sharing them in public now.
In the past, Ruffin said, it has "just felt safe to not be running around talking about it, you know what I mean? And that's kind of sad, but true."
"When you tell a story like that to someone, they could get mad, or the most common reaction is they feel very uncomfortable, and you can tell, and you kind of hurry through the story," Ruffin said. "But I think i's time for them to sit with that discomfort. To hear it and let it really affect them, because it's scary to look at that and know that you're subject to that happening over and over again. And a lot of white people can't even get near that thought, it is too painful. Meanwhile, we're running around, living smack dab in the middle of it. So yeah, let's get uncomfortable."