• jeniatchley

YDSC stands with #BlackLivesMatter

Updated: Jun 19, 2020

On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, an unarmed black man, was killed in Minneapolis, Minnesota in what has been ruled a homicide by asphyxia due to neck and back compression that cut off the blood flow to his brain. A police officer pressing his knee against Floyd's neck caused his death. In the days that followed, Americans took to the streets to protest police brutality and raised concerns about the frequency and severity in which black Americans, specifically unarmed black men, are killed by police throughout our county. In South Carolina, we saw protests from Greenville, Columbia, Charleston, Myrtle Beach, Summerville, Sumter, and several other communities.

The Young Democrats of South Carolina stand in solidarity with those protesters fighting and peacefully demonstrating in our state and all over the United States. These peaceful protests are an opportunity for people of color to stand against the injustices that they face on a near-daily basis concerning police violence and police overreach. It is the position of YDSC that black lives matter and that those who are leaders in South Carolina's government should take immediate action to address and rectify these issues that directly impact our black residents. We also strongly condemn the use of excessive force and weaponry on those who seek to invoke their First Amendment right to assemble and challenge the government.

We call upon the municipal elected officials, South Carolina House Democratic Caucus, and the South Carolina Senate Democratic Caucus, to create and advocate for fair and inclusive legislation concerning legal protection for protesters, community policing, and the myriad of racial inequalities within our state.

Furthermore, we call upon South Carolina Democratic Party and its Chairman, Trav Robertson to immediately create a task force on Race and Police Brutality and to ensure that the party addresses these issues during this week's 2020 South Carolina Democratic State Convention. The duty of this party, whose electorate is 66% black, is to be at the forefront of these issues and impress the importance and urgency of these matters upon its members, candidates, elected officials, and stakeholders.

We encourage young people who want to seek change and progress in South Carolina to join us. We will continue to work with activists, community leaders, and organizations to make sure that Young Democrats are doing all they can to advocate, organize, and be servants to the community. We are not afraid to say that ‘Black Lives Matter’ and that we must seek justice for those that need it.

We offer our support to protesters and supporters all over our country and also to the family of George Floyd and the Greater Minneapolis community. YDSC will release information through social media regarding various events and initiatives regarding our involvement in this fight. We invite you to join us on Monday, June 8, 2020 at 8:00 PM EST for our first forum of our new series: Born to Lose. Built to Win.: Being Black in the South.

Jeni Atchley, MPA/MSCJ, YDSC President, Dorchester County

Jeremy Jones, YDSC 1st Vice President, Lexington County

Austin Jackson, YDSC Secretary, Richland County

Ebony Clemmons, YDSC Treasurer, Charleston County

Ra Shad Frazier Gaines, YDSC National Committeeman, Aiken County

Jessica Bright, YDSC National Committeewoman, Dorchester County

Micah Jenkins, YDSC Communications Director, Anderson County

Gerrick Sands, YDSC Data Director, Dorchester County

Kevin Eckert, YDSC Outreach Director, Sumter County

Camden Johnson, YDSC Progressive Caucus Chair, Greenville County

Dr. Jermaine Johnson, YDSC Minority Caucus Chair, Richland County

Michael McCord, YDSC LGBTQ+ Caucus Chair, Greenville County

Marcurius Byrd, JD,, YDSC Environmental Caucus Chair, Richland County

McKenzie Waston, YDSC Women’s Caucus Chair, Richland County

Eric Manning, Ashley Cooper Young Democrats Chair, Charleston County

Erica Edmondson, Young Democrats of Greenville County Chair, Greenville County

Heather Sanders, Laurens County Young Democrats Chair, Laurens County

Quanisea Moses, Young Democrats of Florence County Chair, Florence County

Hirak Pati, Esq., Young Democrats of Spartanburg Chair, Spartanburg County

Candace Caldwell, Orangeburg Calhoun Young Democrats Chair, Orangeburg County

Breanna Spaulding, Young Democrats of the Central Midlands Chair, Richland County

Jitwan Floyd, Young Democrats of Greenwood Chair, Greenwood County

Moses Terrell Pyatt, Young Democrats of Sumter County Chair, Sumter County

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