It’s Bigger Than You holds One Year Anniversary March
(APN) ATLANTA — On Tuesday, August 19, 2015, one year anniversary of the It’s Bigger Than You movement, the group marked the occasion with a commemorative march starting at the CNN Center. Forty supporters marched through downtown Atlanta, despite heavy rain and thunder.
“Today was about celebrating the resistance work that has been happening on the ground for the past year… [I]t was also about lifting up the cases of Atlanta victims of police brutality, like Alexia Christian, Nicholas Thomas, Anthony Hill,” Aurielle Lucier, founder of It’s Bigger Than You, told Atlanta Progressive News.
In addition to marching and chanting, participants blocked the road near Slaton Courthouse, where Alexia Christian was killed by police on April 30, 2015, so her mother, Felicia Christian, could grieve.
“What I want people to know, is there has been no justice served… I want them to know that [Atlanta Police] Chief [George] Turner is holding evidence that would help prove innocence or guilt of my daughter,” Christian told APN.
Alexia Christian was shot ten times by APD officers after allegedly escaping her handcuffs and getting a hold of a gun. Surveillance video and dash cam footage have yet to be released, as questions about the incident remain unanswered.
“Alexia Christian! Say her name!” marchers chanted for several minutes, as they stood at the very spot where police shot her. Three police cars followed the group during the march and idled nearby while the group blocked the road outside the courthouse.
“I felt like I was crying out to her, letting her know we are fighting for her, that she will not have died in vain. It’s overwhelming, it’s very overwhelming,” Christian said.
“I think having Alexia Christian’s mother here was so powerful, just watching her literally say her daughter’s name with such profoundness and such pain and hurt, you could see what she was going through,” Zakkiyya Anderson, one of the marchers, said.
“Sometime privilege is about space. It is not only about rights, but about how comfortable you feel. White privilege is often about having comfort in all spaces, belonging in all spaces, and I feel like that is something that people of color, and black people specifically, are robbed of,” Lucier said.
“We hold space and allow someone to grieve in the middle of the street while they are resisting… and they don’t have to worry that they’re safe,” Lucier said.
Reflecting on the march itself, participants noted the smaller turnout than the first It’s Bigger Than You march this time last year, even as details begin to surface around the latest victim of police violence in Atlanta: Troy Robinson, who died after being tased by police earlier this month.
“We need to keep doing this, we need to keep doing this until we don’t have to do it again,” Roberta Espre, one of the marchers, said.
“[W]e just heard today about Troy Robinson, who had nine children, and he was killed by police here in Atlanta,” Anderson said.
The marchers also paused to reflect on their personal connection to the national Black Lives Matter movement, and what Black Lives Matter means to them.
Black Lives Matter “means that that I am paving a way for my children, for my grandchildren, that they don’t ever have to worry about going into these streets and have to fear for the police, or have to fear being in the justice system at all period,” Espre said.
“I want the officers to do their jobs, to serve and protect and stop killing… They don’t have a license or a badge just to kill, they have a license and badge to serve the community, protect the community,” Christian said.