Thousands of Americans gather for protests on July 4 as Black Panther members arrive at a Southern monument used by the KKK in Georgia and protesters burn the American flag near Trump Tower
- Thousands of Americans continued to protest protests against police brutality and racial inequality across the country on July 4 across the country.
- The holiday is underscored by a background of growing controversy over the way President Trump deals with the coronavirus pandemic, systematic racism common to various social institutions and police brutality
- Black Panther members arrived at the Stone Mountain Confederate Memorial in Georgia to protest the reopening over ties to the Ku Klux Klan
- New York City protesters burned an American flag near Trump Tower and crowds swarmed the streets
- Several other protests have been held in Washington DC, Chicago, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, and more
Thousands of Americans have dumped traditional cookouts to fight for a rethought country on Independence Day with dozens of protests spanning several cities – including an American flag burning in New York City – as tensions over racial inequality and corona virus spikes intensify.
The past few weeks have been a particularly divided time in the United States as an invisible battle line has been drawn between civilians on a number of issues from law enforcement to face masks.
The arrival of July 4 on Saturday was no celebration for some Americans who believe the 224th Independence Day struggle for freedom is far from over.
In Georgia, members of the Black Panther Party descended to Stone Mountain Park to call for the removal of the Stone Mountain Confederate Memorial tree.
Thousands of protesters in the United States bypassed traditional barbecues and cookouts to participate in July 4 protests against police brutality and racism
Black Panther Party members (pictured) arrived in Stone Mountain Park on July 4 when officials reopened the Stone Mountain Confederate Memorial – a site often used by white supremacist group Ku Klux Klan
Several US flags were torched on Saturday as protesters set them on fire near Trump Tower in New York City, as citizens become increasingly exhausted with divisive rhetoric
A nine-story sculpture carved into a sprawling rock face northeast of Atlanta, Stone Mountain Confederate Memorial is arguably the South’s most daring monument with its pro-slavery legacy still intact.
Despite long-running demands for the removal of what many consider to be a sanctuary for racism, the gigantic depiction of three Southern heroes on horseback still ominously towers over rural Georgia, protected by state law.
It, like many other Southern images, has become entangled between Americans who claim to celebrate hate ideologies and those who believe it honors the tradition of the South.
“Here we are in Atlanta, the birthplace of the Civil Rights Movement, and we still have the largest Confederate monument in the world,” said Gerald Griggs, a vice president of the Atlanta chapter of the NAACP Civil Rights Group, who as last organized a march that called for scraping the carving from the mountainside.
“It’s time for our state to get on the right side of history.”
Stone Mountain has long been a symbol for white supremacists. The Ku Klux Klan, a hate group formed by veterans of the Confederate Army and with a history of lynching and terror against black people, held its rebirth on the mountain in 1915 with flaming crosses.
Protesters with signs like ‘The Founding Father’s Owned Slaves’ and Black Lives Matter signs kneel down at the remains of a torched American flag outside Trump Tower
Angela Moore (center) holds an American flag upside down and a sign that reads “Stop Killing” as she stands near police officers during a small standoff between police and protesters in front of Lafayette Square near the White House in Washington, DC
A demonstrator shouts at a row of police officers during a small confrontation between police and protesters in front of Lafayette Square near the White House in Washington, DC
Burning of the American flag outside Trump Tower is seen as a direct act of resistance to a government criticized for being a deaf person in racial issues
Second Amendment groups gather to protest in Richmond, Virginia. Social media event pages said the groups protested open carry laws, commemorating Duncan Lemp and against Governor Ralph Northam.
Klansmen still occasionally hold meetings in the shadow of the building, albeit with protesters behind the police band. Many of those cross burns occurred on or around July 4
But with the rise of the Civil Rights Movement, segregationist officials in the state insisted on the foundation of the Stone Mountain Memorial Association in 1958 and bought the park. The carving was completed in 1972.
“This debate has been going on for years and we are sensitive to it,” said John Bankhead, a spokesman for the group.
“We want to tell history as it is, not as some say.”
Protesters in Richmond, Virginia gathered at the now-violated statue of Robert E. Lee on July 4. The Confederate monument was one of many damaged since the protests began in May.
A sign that reads “Fight White Supremacy Free All Political Prisoners” is lifted into the air during a Black Lives Matter demonstration on July 4 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Members of the DC Metropolitan Police arrest a black man at Black Lives Matter Plaza on July 4, 2020 in Washington, DC, as protests about police brutality and systemic racism continue