Black Lives Matter protesters parade through Brighton – days after officers filmed pinning down man

Thousands of Black Lives Matter protesters  march through Brighton – with precious little social distancing – days after three city police officers were filmed pinning down BAME man shouting ‘I can’t breathe’

  • Thousands of protesters are marching through Brighton in support of the Black Lives Matter movement 
  • Demonstrators wearing black and holding up signs calling out systemic racism gathered by Palace Pier 
  • They set off along the seafront shouting ‘Black lives matter every day’ and ‘UK is not innocent 

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Thousands of protesters are marching through Brighton in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Demonstrators wearing black and holding up signs calling out systemic racism gathered by the city’s famous Palace Pier at midday on Saturday before moving off through the streets.

Many are wearing face masks and have placards with slogans including ‘Decolonise everything’ and ‘Defund the police’.

They set off along the seafront shouting ‘Black lives matter every day’ and ‘UK is not innocent’. As protesters pass the Brighton war memorial they are being serenaded by a string quartet.

The musical tribute is in stark contrast to the protest last month which saw a small group occupy the stone monument amid a heavy police presence.

Thousands of protesters are marching through Brighton in support of the Black Lives Matter movement

Demonstrators wearing black and holding up signs calling out systemic racism gathered by the city's famous Palace Pier at midday on Saturday before moving off through the streets

Demonstrators wearing black and holding up signs calling out systemic racism gathered by the city’s famous Palace Pier at midday on Saturday before moving off through the streets

Many are wearing face masks and have placards with slogans including 'Decolonise everything' and 'Defund the police'

Many are wearing face masks and have placards with slogans including ‘Decolonise everything’ and ‘Defund the police’

Gathering in their thousands at The Level, the protesters shouted out in unison: ‘It is our duty to do this every day! It is our duty to fight for racial justice! It is our duty to win! We are stronger together! We are here with love, peace and solidarity! We have nothing to lose – too many have already lost too much!’

The latest protest comes days after outcry over a video showing a man shouting ‘I can’t breathe’ while being restrained on the ground by three police officers in the city.

Sussex Police said the man was arrested and became aggressive towards officers before being placed on the ground.

The incident has been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

One protester speaking to the crowds on a megaphone addressed the video. She shouted: ‘Sussex Police has recently been filmed using excessive force on a young black man.’

Last month, more than 10,000 protesters marched through the East Sussex city in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement worldwide.

There have been calls for the popular seafront resort to become an officially anti-racist city.

Carmen Appich, chair of the council’s tourism, equality, communities and culture committee, said: ‘In the wake of the sickening killing of George Floyd the global calls for change and the impact of Covid-19 on black and ethnic minority people, we made a public pledge to become an anti-racist council.

‘We acknowledge that it is not enough to be non-racist and we must actively use our privilege, position as community leaders and platforms to challenge structural racism and injustice within the council and in the city.’ 

They set off along the seafront shouting 'Black lives matter every day' and 'UK is not innocent'. As protesters pass the Brighton war memorial they are being serenaded by a string quartet

They set off along the seafront shouting ‘Black lives matter every day’ and ‘UK is not innocent’. As protesters pass the Brighton war memorial they are being serenaded by a string quartet

Gathering in their thousands at The Level, the protesters shouted out in unison: 'It is our duty to do this every day! It is our duty to fight for racial justice! It is our duty to win! We are stronger together! We are here with love, peace and solidarity! We have nothing to lose - too many have already lost too much!'

Gathering in their thousands at The Level, the protesters shouted out in unison: ‘It is our duty to do this every day! It is our duty to fight for racial justice! It is our duty to win! We are stronger together! We are here with love, peace and solidarity! We have nothing to lose – too many have already lost too much!’

London Mayor Sadiq Khan spent £30,000 on boarding up statues in Westminster

London Mayor Sadiq Khan spent £30,000 on boarding up statues in Westminster – including £10,000 to protect Winston Churchill monument which was vandalised during BLM protests

  • Figures released show it cost £10,147 to put a hoarding around Churchill’s statue
  • £21,115 was spent on protecting statues of Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi
  • It cost was £3,050 to remove graffiti in Parliament Square and Trafalgar Squares

London mayor Sadiq Khan spent more than £30,000 on boarding up statues in Westminster including one of Winston Churchill, it can be revealed.

The monument to the wartime leader was boxed up by Mr Khan after it was daubed with graffiti during Black Lives Matter demonstrations last month.

Underneath Churchill’s name, protesters had daubed ‘is a racist’.

The monument to the wartime leader was boxed up (pictured) by Mr Khan after it was daubed with graffiti during Black Lives Matter demonstrations last month

The Greater London Authority, run by the mayor, put hoardings around three statues in Parliament Square ahead of further protests

The Greater London Authority, run by the mayor, put hoardings around three statues in Parliament Square ahead of further protests

The Greater London Authority, run by the mayor, put hoardings around three statues in Parliament Square ahead of further protests.

Figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show it cost £10,147 to put a hoarding around the statue of Churchill. 

A further £21,115 was spent on protecting statues of Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi. 

The GLA said it cost £3,050 to remove graffiti in Parliament and Trafalgar squares.

Churchill’s statue was boxed up on June 12 but the boarding was removed six days later ahead of a visit by French president Emmanuel Macron. 

Boris Johnson said it was ‘absurd and shameful’ that the monument was at risk of attack, saying Churchill remained a hero for saving the country from ‘fascist and racist tyranny’.  

Mr Khan last month defended his actions after Home Secretary Priti Patel accused him of failing to stand up to ‘thuggery’ and demanded the statue be set free.

He said the decision to protect the statue in Parliament Square – and the monuments to Mandela and Gandhi – was a ‘wise’ precaution.

He said there were fears the London monuments could become a ‘flashpoint for violence’ involving far-Right protesters, after the toppling of a statue of slave trader Edward Colston in Bristol.

Mr Khan has previously pointed out that the statues had been boarded up before, including while Mr Johnson was mayor.

Two-thirds of Britons back Boris Johnson’s refusal to ‘take the knee’

Two-third of Britons back Boris Johnson‘s refusal to ‘take the knee’ in solidarity with Black Lives Matter protests.

A poll for MailOnline found 67 per cent support the PM’s view that he will not engage in ‘gestures’ and people should not be ‘bullied’ into it.

Just 13 per cent opposed Mr Johnson’s stance, according to the research by Redfield & Wilton Strategies. 

The premier made clear last week that he will not be ‘taking the knee’, despite the protest being adopted around the world since the death of George Floyd in the US.

Mr Johnson insisted was focused on the ‘substance’ of changing social attitudes and improving opportunities for ethnic minorities. 

By contrast, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has said he is ‘pleased and proud’ he chose to be photographed kneeling. 

A poll for MailOnline found 67 per cent support the PM’s view that he will not engage in ‘gestures’ and people should not be ‘bullied’ into ‘taking the knee’

Sir Keir Starmer has said he is 'pleased and proud' he chose to 'take the knee' alongside his deputy Angela Rayner last month (pictured)

Sir Keir Starmer has said he is ‘pleased and proud’ he chose to ‘take the knee’ alongside his deputy Angela Rayner last month (pictured)

What are the origins of ‘taking the knee’? 

The ‘taking the knee’ protest was started in 2016 by American football player Colin Kaepernick.

He famously knelt for the US national anthem before playing for the San Francisco 49ers, to demonstrate against police brutality. 

He is believed to have taken the idea from how the US military honour fallen comrades. 

Kaepernick said at the time: ‘I am not going to get up to show pride in a country that oppresses black people and people of colour.

‘To me, this is bigger than football, and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.’ 

The action was hugely controversial in the US, with critics including Donald Trump saying it disrespected soldiers and the flag. 

However, it spread more widely across US sports over the following years. 

It was initially tolerated by the NFL, before an edict was issued in 2018 insisting all players on the field during  the national anthem must stand.

That ban was overturned earlier this month following outrage over George Floyd’s death. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodel said: ‘We were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest.’  

Many believe it destroyed Kaepernick’s career – he has not played a game since his contract ended in 2017. 

It has been widely adopted around the world following George Floyd’s death, with police officers in the UK joining in with the action in public. 

The poll, carried out on Wednesday, found 38 per cent strongly backed Mr Johnson’s position, while another 29 per cent agreed. Just 7 per cent disagreed and six per cent strongly disagreed. Another 16 per cent were neutral and four per cent did not know.

Interestingly, the split was less dramatic when people were asked whether Mr Johnson should ‘take the knee’.

Some 26 per cent agreed he should – 11 per cent ‘strongly’ – against 40 per cent who disagreed – including 26 per cent who ‘strongly’ felt he should not. 

Mr Johnson’s comments, in a phone-in on LBC radio last week, came after Dominic Raab faced a backlash for saying the demonstration was like something out of ‘Game of Thrones’, and the only two people he knelt for were the Queen and his wife when he proposed. 

Asked whether he would ‘take the knee’, Mr Johnson said: ”I don’t believe in gestures. I believe i substance. I believe in doing things that make a practical difference.’ 

Mr Johnson said his concern was that he did not ‘want people to be bullied into doing things that they don’t necessarily want to do’. 

‘If you think what happened with those police officers standing at the Cenotaph. They were being really insulted in quite aggressive terms and being told to take the knee,’ he said.

‘Some of them did. It was very difficult then for the other who didn’t… I think it is very very important that you don’t do things that make life difficult or embarrassing.’

When it was pointed out some senior police had now instructed officers not to take the knee on duty, Mr Johnson ‘I do agree with that.’  

He cited his record as London mayor on improving diversity, saying there had been significant improvements in the past decade, and stressed he wanted to get more black representation in the Cabinet.

‘That what I want to see,’ Mr Johnson said. ‘I would rather see a story of championing success and taking about the opportunities that we can open.’ 

The intervention was condemned by some on Twitter who argued that Mr Johnson was perfectly happy to engage in ‘gestures’ such as clap for carers during the coronavirus crisis.

But others agreed that kneeling ‘adds no value’, and the important thing was to change society. 

Sir Keir said last week that he was ‘pleased and proud’ he had decided to ‘take the knee’.  

‘I don’t regret it at all. It was an expression of solidarity of  recognition of the importance of the BLM movement and what they stand for across the world,’ he said. 

‘It’s got to be an individual choice. I made the choice to do it and I am pleased and proud about that.

‘Others will choose otherwise.’    

Guidance varies across the country, but the Met Police has told its officers they should not kneel at public order events for their own safety, although at other times it is down to personal choice. 

It emerged this week that soldiers have been banned from ‘taking the knee’ because it is deemed too political.

Commanders warned personnel at HMS Sultan in Gosport, Hampshire, that when in uniform they could not partake in the action.

Defence officials are currently reviewing the policy to see if there’s any leeway where they can show their respect in other ways. 

Police (including Kent's chief constable, pictured last month) have previously 'taken the knee' in solidarity with BLM protests. However, many officers have now been advised not to

Police (including Kent’s chief constable, pictured last month) have previously ‘taken the knee’ in solidarity with BLM protests. However, many officers have now been advised not to  

The ‘taking the knee’ protest was started in 2016 by American football player Colin Kaepernick.

He famously knelt for the US national anthem before playing for the San Francisco 49ers, to demonstrate against police brutality. 

Kaepernick said at the time: ‘I am not going to get up to show pride in a country that oppresses black people and people of colour.

‘To me, this is bigger than football, and it would be selfish on my part to look the other way. There are bodies in the street and people getting paid leave and getting away with murder.’ 

The action was hugely controversial in the US, with critics saying it disrespected soldiers and the flag. It was banned by the NFL amid anger from Donald Trump, and many believe it destroyed Kaepernick’s career.

It has been widely adopted around the world following George Floyd’s death, and used by Premier League footballers before matches.

Gangs pose ‘greatest danger’ to young black men NOT police, says equality champion Trevor Phillips

A former head of the Commission for Racial Equality has urged young black men to realise the “greatest danger” to them is gangs – not the police.

Trevor Phillips, 66, said yesterday British youngsters should not look to compare Britain’s problems with America.

His intervention came after some protests at Black Lives Matter marches in the UK over George Floyd’s death descended into violence.

And it came on the same day the Independent Office for Police Conduct said it would launch an inquiry into racial discrimination in the use of stop and search by forces across England and Wales.

Mr Phillips pointed out hundreds of youngsters were dying every year due to gang-related crime.

He said: ‘There is absolutely no doubt that if you are thinking about what is the greatest danger today to a young black man in the capital, the answer is not the police, it’s somebody else in a gang.

Former Commission for Racial Equality head Trevor Phillips warned gangs not police were the biggest problem facing young black me in the UK

Mr Phillips said people of colour are more likely to be searched by police, seen here at Notting Hill Carnival in 2017

Mr Phillips said people of colour are more likely to be searched by police, seen here at Notting Hill Carnival in 2017

“That person is very likely to be a person of colour.

“While we have to get the police to do the right thing and behave in the right way, let us not forget that young black men are dying in hundreds every year. Never mind the ones that are being injured and maimed.”

Mr Phillips made the comments to the The Telegraph’s Planet Normal podcast and said there was “clearly a problem” stop and searches.

He spoke out after the Met apologised to British sprinter Bianca Williams after she and her partner were pulled over in their car

Her three-month-old son was also in their Mercedes with them on Saturday when it was stopped and footage she shot went viral on the internet.

Earlier this week Met Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick told a committee of MPs officers had visited Ms Williams to apologise for “distress” caused by the stop.

British sprinter Bianca Williams with her partner Ricardo dos Santos pulled over by police

British sprinter Bianca Williams with her partner Ricardo dos Santos pulled over by police

Footage of the stop and search went viral online after it was posted on the internet

Footage of the stop and search went viral online after it was posted on the internet

Ms Williams believes she and her partner Ricardo dos Santos, a Portuguese international 400m runner, were racially profiled by officers because they were black.

Mr Phillips said he too had been pulled over in the same way by police 20 years ago in an ‘absurd’ stop.

He described it as ‘humiliating and ridiculous” before adding that people of colour were more likely to be pulled over ‘in a way that is not courteous, that is not founded in some proper crime-fighting activity’.

Black Lives Matter protests have been in held in the UK, but some have exploded into various with some campaigners (not pictured here) becoming aggressive towards the police

Black Lives Matter protests have been in held in the UK, but some have exploded into various with some campaigners (not pictured here) becoming aggressive towards the police

The Independent Office for Police Conduct is set to launch an inquiry into racial discrimination in the use of stop and search by forces across England and Wales.

It is looking at police forces in the UK to examine whether there are any patterns of prejudice against ethnic minorities.

The murder of Nicole Smallman, 27, and Bibaa Henry, 46, will be investigated after two officers were arrested after it was alleged that they took selfies with their bodies in the background.

Footage revealed yesterday showed Sussex Police holding down a man who was complaining that he could not breath

Footage revealed yesterday showed Sussex Police holding down a man who was complaining that he could not breath

Figures from the Met Police show that less than one per cent of the more than 250 annual complaints about racism are upheld.

Yesterday the MailOnline showed footage of an arrested man claiming he couldn’t breathe while three officers restrained him.

The footage of the man sparked an internal investigation by Sussex Police and Britain’s police watchdog.

The suspect, who is believed to be from Brighton’s BAME community, was held on suspicion of criminal damage and assaulting an emergency worker in Montpelier Road this week.

The unnamed man is heard yelling: ‘I can’t breathe. That is my Adam’s apple and you are crushing it’ – but the officer closest to his head repeatedly tells him that his arm is on his collarbone.

The footage emerged two days before a Black Lives Matter protest in the city following the murder of George Floyd in the US who died when a police officer crushed his neck with his knee.

In a statement, Sussex Police said: ‘Police officers searching for a vulnerable missing teenager attended an address in Montpelier Road in Brighton at 10.15am on Tuesday 7 July.

‘A resident of the address, a 28-year-old man, refused police entry and was arrested.

‘Police subsequently found the missing 17-year-old young woman hiding at the property and returned them safely home.’

Kourtney Kardashian’s pal and TikTok star Addison Rae apologizes for sharing an anti-BLM video

TikTok star Addison Rae Easterling has been silent on social media since June 30 as she faced criticism since an anti-Black Lives Matter video, she shared four years ago, resurfaced. 

The 19-year-old, who has collaborated with Kourtney Kardashian for videos, issued an apology on her Twitter account on Wednesday. 

‘Four years ago, I reposted a video which included a woman sharing her thoughts on Black Lives Matter and All Lives Matter,’ she wrote in her statement. ‘That I should not have.’

Apologizing: TikTok star Addison Rae Easterling, who has collaborated with Kourtney Kardashian for videos, issued an apology on her Twitter account on Thursday after facing criticism over a resurfaced anti-Black Lives Matter video she shared (pictured in February)

‘I owe all of you an apology,’ her statement began. ‘Because of my privilege, I didn’t understand and wasn’t educated enough on the social injustices facing the Black community.’

She expressed her support for Black Lives Matter saying ‘All lives CANNOT matter until Black lives do.’

The video that resurfaced was shared by Easterling four years ago and referred to the Black Lives Matter movement as ‘a cult’ that does ‘more harm’ than ‘good.’

‘The Black community was and continues to be oppressed and damaged by systemic racism,’ Easterling continued. 

Collaborators: Easterling last collaborated with Kourtney and her son Mason Disick for videos in June. 'I owe all of you an apology,' her statement began. 'Because of my privilege, I didn't understand and wasn't educated enough on the social injustices facing the Black community.'

Collaborators: Easterling last collaborated with Kourtney and her son Mason Disick for videos in June. ‘I owe all of you an apology,’ her statement began. ‘Because of my privilege, I didn’t understand and wasn’t educated enough on the social injustices facing the Black community.’

Statement: 'Four years ago, I reposted a video which included a woman sharing her thoughts on Black Lives Matter and All Lives Matter,' she wrote in her statement. 'That I should not have'

Statement: ‘Four years ago, I reposted a video which included a woman sharing her thoughts on Black Lives Matter and All Lives Matter,’ she wrote in her statement. ‘That I should not have’ 

Criticism: The video that resurfaced was shared by Easterling four years ago and referred to the Black Lives Matter movement as 'a cult' that does 'more harm' than 'good.' Her apology was her first post on social media since June 30

Criticism: The video that resurfaced was shared by Easterling four years ago and referred to the Black Lives Matter movement as ‘a cult’ that does ‘more harm’ than ‘good.’ Her apology was her first post on social media since June 30

The creator, who is the second most followed creator on TikTok with 49.6m followers, said she is aware of her ‘mistakes,’ and is ‘committed to learning from them.’ 

‘I will never stop growing, learning, and fighting for those whose voices rightfully need to be amplified,’ she continued. ‘And will forever believe that Black Lives Matter.’ 

She went on to encourage followers to ‘join’ her in ‘supporting and learning more about the global Black Lives Matter movement.’

I am truly sorry and I am committed to using the platform you all have given me to work on becoming a better ally,’ she wrote. ‘I love you all endlessly.’ 

Support: She expressed her support for Black Lives Matter saying 'All lives CANNOT matter until Black lives do.' Easterling also encouraged her fans to support the movement

Support: She expressed her support for Black Lives Matter saying ‘All lives CANNOT matter until Black lives do.’ Easterling also encouraged her fans to support the movement 

Voicing support: In May, Easterling shared a video lip syncing to Macklemore's Same Love song lyrics 'I might not be the same But that's not important / No freedom 'til we're equal / Damn right I support it'

Voicing support: In May, Easterling shared a video lip syncing to Macklemore’s Same Love song lyrics ‘I might not be the same But that’s not important / No freedom ’til we’re equal / Damn right I support it’ 

In May, Easterling shared a video lip syncing to Macklemore’s Same Love song lyrics ‘I might not be the same But that’s not important / No freedom ’til we’re equal / Damn right I support it.’ 

The video included a graphic that read ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,’ and ‘Black Lives Matter.’

That video came after BLM protests erupted around the country following the death of George Floyd, Easterling included contacts for the Minneapolis Mayor and District Attorney, as well as GoFund me links for Floyd’s family. 

 ‘”If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor,”‘ she captioned the post. 

In her video: The video included a graphic that read 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,' and 'Black Lives Matter'

National attention: That video came after BLM protests erupted around the country following the death of George Floyd, Easterling included contacts for the Minneapolis Mayor and District Attorney, as well as GoFund me links for Floyd's family

In her video: The video included a graphic that read ‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,’ and ‘Black Lives Matter.’ That video came after BLM protests erupted around the country following the death of George Floyd, Easterling included contacts for the Minneapolis Mayor and District Attorney, as well as GoFund me links for Floyd’s family 

More backlash: Though in June, she also faced criticism for using a Martin Luther King Jr. quote as a caption for selfies on Instagram, after BLM protests erupted across the country after the death of George Floyd

More backlash: Though in June, she also faced criticism for using a Martin Luther King Jr. quote as a caption for selfies on Instagram, after BLM protests erupted across the country after the death of George Floyd 

Though in June, she also faced criticism for using a Martin Luther King Jr. quote as a caption for selfies on Instagram, after BLM protests erupted across the country after the death of George Floyd. 

She deleted the photos after being called out by fans and other influencers. 

‘I am learning and will continue to educate myself daily,’ she wrote at the time in response to criticism. ‘I take full responsibility for not communicating or displaying it in a respectful way.’

Adding: ‘My intentions are pure and this quote is something I believe in so deeply. I am so sorry and I’ll take it down .’