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Black Lives Matter march held in Oceanside

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Protesters marched down Oceanside Road Sunday to bring awareness to systemic racism and call for an end to police brutality.

Organizing groups Table Top Protests of Oceanside and Young Long Island for Justice led the march from School No. 5 to School No. 4.

Oceansider Idalia Blake, one of the organizers, spoke about how segregation in New York leads to unequal education. Blake said she grew up in a poor neighborhood in Far Rockaway, then moved to Oceanside and attended Oceanside School District.

“When I lived [in Queens], the education system was lackluster, for lack of a better word,” she said, then spoke about how well-funded Oceanside schools are, and how city school students are not afforded the same opportunities.

Tnbit Demoz also spoke during the protest, about racism infiltrating police departments and not enough awareness of black history. “We don’t hear about Black Wall Street, we don’t hear about Juneteenth, [until recently],” she said. “We don’t hear about some of the successes that happened for black people even among tragedies.”

At one point, protesters kneeled for about eight minutes and 46 seconds, the amount of time George Floyd had a former Minneapolis police officer’s knee on his neck before he died. During that time, a couple of participants read out Floyd’s final words, including “I can’t breathe,” “I can’t move” and “Mama.”