Death of George Floyd

CrossFit CEO faces backlash over tweet which associated Covid-19 with George Floyd
Black kettle bell
Black kettle bell Credit: Jesper Aggergaard

In response to a tweet by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington stating that "racism is a public health issue" the CrossFit CEO Greg Glassman tweeted "FLOYD-19", associating George Floyd whose murder by the police has sparked protests around the world with the Covid-19 pandemic. As a response, hundreds of gyms that ran on an affiliate model for CrossFit have removed the brand from their name and the Reebok brand has announced to end their relationship with CrossFit. Since then Glassman has apologized and CrossFit stated that it'll "not stand for racism".

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Music
Fans of K-Pop band BTS match $1 million donation to Black Lives Matter
Fans at the BTS world tour concert 'Love Yourself' in Los Angeles
Fans at the BTS world tour concert 'Love Yourself' in Los Angeles Credit: LG (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

In just 24 hours the fans of the K-Pop band BTS which call themselves "BTS ARMY" have matched the $1 million donation of the band for the Black Lives Matter cause. Under the hashtag #MatchAMillion the fans had tweeted and called for matching donations, reaching over 490,000 tweets. The matching donation of over $1 million will be split between several organizations that support Black Lives Matter and the fight against racism.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Derek Chauvin to appear in court for the first time
"Justice for George" sign at Minneapolis protests
"Justice for George" sign at Minneapolis protests Credit:

Derek Chauvin, former Minneapolis police officer, is going to make his first appearance in court on Monday afternoon. He has been charged second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter for his involvement in the death of George Floyd. Chauvin pressed his knee on the neck of Floyd for almost nine minutes.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Mitt Romney joins DC protestors
Screenshot of Mitt Romney's Tweet of the DC Protests
Screenshot of Mitt Romney's Tweet of the DC Protests Credit: Mitt Romney via Twitter

Mitt Romney, Utah senator and former Republican presidential candidate, joined a group of Christian protestors in D.C. on Sunday evening. In a picture posted to his Twitter, Romney can be seen wearing a mask and walking among protestors, with the caption "Black Lives Matter". He seems to be the first Republican to be publicly joining the protests following George Floyd's death.

On May 31, Romney took to Twitter to condemn the murder of Floyd, writing "The George Floyd murder is abhorrent. Peaceful protests underscore the urgency of addressing injustices," and adding "but violence drowns the message of the protestors and mocks the principles of justice."

Technology • Internet & Web
Over 210 researchers urge Zuckerberg to fight misinformation spread by Trump
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Credit: Anthony Quintano (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

In an open letter to Mark Zuckerberg, over 210 scientists, around 10% of whom are employed by foundations that are run by Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan, have urged the Facebook CEO to "consider stricter policies on misinformation and incendiary language that harms people or groups of people, especially in our current climate that is grappling with racial injustice". In the letter, the scientists specifically call out postings of Donald Trump that should be subject to Facebooks own community standards.

Regional News • Europe
Belgium: Petition to remove statues of King Leopold II
Leopold II Statue at Place du Trône
Leopold II Statue at Place du Trône Credit: el legowo / CC BY-SA (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Petition calls for removal of the statues of King Leopold II of Belgium. Leopold's troops killed millions in Congo during Belgium's colonial era. The petition was started by a 14-year-old boy and has since garnered traction across Europe. Pictures surfaced on Twitter with Leopold's bust (Gent, Belgium) wrapped in a blood-soaked cloth and the words "I Can't Breathe".

Regional News • Americas • United States
AG William Barr says DC protestors were "not peaceful", defends use of force by law enforcement
AG William Barr, January 2020
AG William Barr, January 2020 Credit: The United States Department of Justice / Public domain

In an interview with CBS News, Attorney General William Barr said protestors on Lafayette Square on June 1 were not peaceful, justifying the use of force by law enforcement. Barr claimed protestors were attacking officers by throwing projectiles and didn't leave the area after multiple warnings. "They were not peaceful protesters. And that’s one of the big lies that the media is, seems to be perpetuating at this point," so Barr. In an interview with The Associated Press, Barr also said: "I’m not involved in giving tactical commands like that. My attitude was, get it done, but I didn’t say, ‘Go do it."

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Music
K-Pop band BTS donates one million dollar to Black Lives Matter
BTS during the Love Yourself concert in Nagoya, 13 January 2019
BTS during the Love Yourself concert in Nagoya, 13 January 2019 Credit: I DARE U JK / CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0)

South Korean K-Pop band BTS together with the band's management company Big Hit Entertainment has donated one million dollar to Black Lives Matter. Neither the band nor Big Hit Entertainment didn't announce the donation but confirmed it after Kailee Scales, managing director of Black Lives Matter, told Variety that they were "moved by the generosity of BTS and allies all over the world who stand in solidarity in the fight for Black lives".

BTS shared a message on Twitter earlier this week, stating "We stand against racial discrimination. We condemn violence. You, I and we all have the right to be respected. We will stand together. #BlackLivesMatter".

Regional News • Americas • United States
Tens of thousands protested on newly named Black Lives Matter Plaza, DC
Black Lives Matter Protest in Washington D.C.
Black Lives Matter Protest in Washington D.C. Credit: Kunii

On Saturday, tens of thousands of people came together at D.C.'s newly named Black Lives Matter Plaza to protests police brutality and racism. Protestors from all walks of life, including army vets, union recruiters, federal workers, doctors and religious folks, were joined by D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser. Bowser recently renamed 16th Street NW to Black Lives Matter Plaza, located close to the White House, and commissioned local artists to paint a large yellow "Black Lives Matter" mural on the street.

During the protest, Bowser was called onstage by a DJ and told the crowd that "it’s so wonderful to see everyone peacefully protesting, wearing their masks."

Regional News • Americas • United States
Denver judge prohibits use of chemical agents and projectiles against peaceful protestors
Police officers standing guard towards George Floyd protestors in Minneapolis
Police officers standing guard towards George Floyd protestors in Minneapolis Credit:

On Friday, Denver US District Court Judge R. Brooke Jackson granted a temporary restraining order that prohibits law enforcement the use of non-lethal projectiles and chemical agents, such as pepper spray and tear gas, against peaceful protestors. The order is effective immediately. Jackson's ruling stated that "the Denver Police Department [DPD] has failed in its duty to police its own." The DPD responded on Twitter, writing: "#ALERT #Denver – A federal judge issued a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) clarifying #DPD use of non-lethal dispersant devices. In the meantime, we will comply with the judge’s directions, many of which are already in line with our community-consulted Use of Force Policy."

Regional News • Americas • United States
Thousands pay their respects to George Floyd

On Saturday afternoon, members of George Floyd's family held a private memorial service in a Baptist church Raeford, North Carolina. The family wore white while other mourners dressed in black.

Thousands of people stood in line earlier to pay their respects before the private memorial began. NC Governor Roy Cooper said that Floyd's death "woke all of us up" and that "some death ain't about dying. Some death is about waking all of us up."

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Art & Design
New artwork by Banksy depicts US flag on fire in a George Floyd tribute
An artwork by Banksy is seen in this image
An artwork by Banksy is seen in this image Credit: Instagram / Banksy

British street artist Banksy has revealed his new artwork inspired by the death of George Floyd, showing his support for the Black Lives Matter movement.

The post, on Instagram, features the scene of a vigil, in which a candle burns the American flag.

Sports • Basketball
Michael Jordan commits $100 million donation over 10 years to fight racism

In a joined statement Michael Jordan and the Jordan brand announced that they'll commit $100 million over 10 years to support "organizations dedicated to ensuring racial equality, social justice and greater access to education".

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Thousands of Germans demonstrate at Black Lives Matter "Silent Demo" against racism
Black Lives Matter "Silent Protest" in Berlin
Black Lives Matter "Silent Protest" in Berlin Credit: Dominik Erhard

In multiple German cities, thousands of people are demonstrating in solidarity with the protests in the United States against racism and police brutality. The police are securing the peaceful protests as the main square "Alexanderplatz" in Berlin is full of people. In the German capital alone, 14 demonstrations have been registered with the police, while protests are being held in 19 German cities. Protesters have been asked to wear black clothing for symbolic reasons.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Music
Kanye West announces that he'll pay the college tuition for George Floyd's daugther

A representative for Kanye West has announced that the artist has set up a 529 education plan to fully cover college tuition for Gianna Floy, the daughter of George Floyd who was murdered by the police. His death and the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor have sparked protests against racism and police brutality across the United States and other countries. West has also donated $2 million to support the families of the three killed people.

Sports • Soccer
LA Galaxy release player Aleksandar Katai in wake of wife's 'racist and violent' social media posts
Aleksandar Katai and wife Tea
Aleksandar Katai and wife Tea Credit: Instagram/ Aleksandar Katai

The LA Galaxy announced Friday the team released Serbian midfielder Aleksandar Katai following racist Instagram posts made by his wife, Tea. The posts, which have since been taken down, mocked protests related to the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis last week.

Katai later posted on Instagram calling the posts "a mistake from my family" and saying he took full responsibility. He apologized "for the pain these posts have caused the LA Galaxy family and all allies in the fight against racism.".

Technology • Internet & Web
Reddit co-founder resigns board and asks for black replacement
Alexis Ohanian
Alexis Ohanian Credit: nrkbeta (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0)

Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian has resigned from the company's board and urged Reddit to fill his spot him with a new black board member.

In a Tweet, Ohanian wrote: "I’m saying this as a father who needs to be able to answer his black daughter when she asks: 'What did you do?'".

Ohanian also announced he would donate all future gains on his Reddit stock to "serve the black community," and is immediately giving $1 million to Colin Kaepernick's racial-justice charity.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Plaza in front of White House renamed to "Black Lives Matter Plaza"

The Washington DC mayor Muriel Bowser has announced that the plaza out in front of the White House has been officially renamed to "Black Lives Matter Plaza". In addition to this Bowser also has asked President Donald Trump to "withdraw all extraordinary federal law enforcement and military presence from Washington DC".

Regional News • Americas • United States
Pelosi requests "a full list of the agencies involved" in D.C. protest response in a letter to Trump
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), November 20, 2019.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), November 20, 2019. Credit: Shawn Miller/Library of Congress / CC0 (Creative Commons CC0 Waiver)

In a letter to the President, Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, requested "a full list of the agencies involved" in the handling and policing of D.C. protests and "clarifications of the roles and responsibilities of the troops and federal law enforcement resources operating in the city." According to reports, multiple officers have either covered up or removed name plates and badges and wouldn't provide identifications. "The practice of officers operating with full anonymity undermines accountability, ignites government distrust and suspicion, and is counter to the principle of procedural justice and legitimacy during this precarious moment in our nation's history", so Pelosi.

Regional News • Europe • United Kingdom
Scottish First Minister Sturgeon Says to Put Pressure on Donald Trump
Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon at the #StopTrident rally at Trafalgar Square on Saturday 27th February 2016.
Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon at the #StopTrident rally at Trafalgar Square on Saturday 27th February 2016. Credit: Garry Knight from London, England / CC0

In an interview with Hits Radio Network on Friday morning, Nicola Sturgeon was asked to give her opinion on the current situation in the United States. Asked whether she believed, Trump was racist, Sturgeon responded that "sometimes it's hard not to conclude that," but added that she couldn't see inside his head. Though she deems it important to put pressure on Donald Trump and America, she urges to also "not forget that we have our own houses to put in order as well". Sturgeon is serving as the fifth First Minister of Scotland in and adds that "a parliament that is still in its 21 years of existence had too few people elected to it from our ethnic minority communities, it’s never had an ethnic minority woman elected to it."