An estimated 600 skateboarders, roller skaters and cyclists rolled from the Long Beach Civic Center to Cherry Hill in solidarity with the aims of the Black Lives Matter movement, one of several ongoing demonstrations protesting police brutality throughout the city.
The protest, “Push for Peace,” which was organized by Devan Romo and local underground news platform The Daily Diddi, had few speeches beyond emphasizing that this would be a peaceful demonstration and that any donations would go towards providing skateboards for underprivileged kids.
“We need to hold on to any positivity that we can, everything seems so bleak,” said protester Cadia Montero.
The ride then took off on Ocean Boulevard where protesters blocked the southern side of the street, eventually turning onto Junipero at Bluff Park. As with other demonstrations related to the death of George Floyd, there was widespread support from most bystanders in their cheering and car horn blasts.
At Bluff Park, skaters did the quintessential drop down Cherry Hill, while protesters gathered around a high-energy set by Long Beach-based punk rock band Wacko.
“What it means for me to be here, it means my life,” said protester Sommar Washington. “This is me protesting, wanting to survive and be alive and actually exist. Black lives matter, we’re here, we’ve been here and we’re going to be here and all we deserve is some respect.”
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