We bring you the next set of videos in our interviews with Pagan and Heathen protestors in Detroit. The George Floyd protests that fueled the Black Lives Matter demonstrations are where their story begins. This set of interview may particularly difficult towards the end of this installment, and the entire second piece.. We advise discretion as the later videos contain distubing content.
This is Kenya Coviak, with PBN news, and we are doing an interview with the protesters – two of them – who were at the May 31st demonstrations regarding the George Floyd protests. And then socialjustice protests going on in Detroit. Andyou’re not here to hear me speak. We’re here to hear them. So with that, we’re gonna take it away with B and Elwood.
Elwood: Hi. So, I’m Elwood and I would like to start off by saying that we were watching some of the media coverage. Just the things that were going in the other protests, in other cities related to George Floyd’s murder. Um, and it impacted me severely and I had felt that I was sitting at home not doing anything. So B and I decided to just take a point of view perspective look for ourselves and head out there.
So longstory short, me, B, and a separate fried of ours had headed out into the city. We followed rural highways up, gone straight up toward 375 which was closed off. Any normal entry ways of the city that we have taken to just go skate, or do any normal activities that we would Ineed anytime do, ah, hanging out, were closed off.
So we had gone couple, maybe one to three miles up and parked in the outskirts of the city. around 2nd and Selden, where we had parked the vehicle and decided to get out get our supplies. Which is what the intention of us going had followed up with. So again, just to get a point of view and find out what we were up against. And seeing what was real, what was not real, in our own perspective. We had gathered supplies such as, water, granola bars. We heard that baking soda can diffuse tear gas, if that was really going on. We weren’t sure so, we were just trying to-
B: Our best,
Elwood: Our best, as much as we could. So again, getting there, 2nd and Selden. We got out of the car, packed up our supplies. We had taken Covid into considerations, as well.
We were all masked up, had hoods on, just at social distance expectations.
B: We were also told to protect our identities.
Elwood: As well.
B: For people that were taking photos and things like that, so
Elwood: But again, so following things following things into the city.
Elwood: So i think heading into the second partof the night we have been making somenoiselike i said lighting off some somefireworks which again probably shouldn’t have done, but nothing huge. Nothing explosive.
B: Nothing actually causing damage.
Elwood: – bombs things to signify excitement. Joy, just playful .um i remember- I remember we had reached a store, a storefront. And a couple, a couple of stragglers have gotten a little distracted. Um maybe, and had started to try and, maybe loot. I’m not sure if that was the intention or not.
B: they were banging onlikethe windows like
Elwood: It sounded like they’re trying to make noise more, Again it didn’t, it didn’t – nobody went in.
B: None of thewindows were actually broken.
Elwood: Nobody went in, but it was still a distraction. And I remember seeing members of the protest. Just three civilians go up and say
“this is not what we’re about. You’re not here to break windows and get clout, and put our names on the internet. We’re here to march these streets and to let them know we’re not going to stand for anything. That Black Lives Matter. that all human beings need to be standing up for this need to be-“
B: That going and robbing a nike storeis not gonna –
Elwood: That’s not the point of any of this. It’s not gonna help, and i just remember being brought back. Watching them, watching an entire again, and a group of people just stop, and then be brought back to their intention. But –
B: I mean like i said that was such a momentary thingthat was a brief stop and moments. The- the people running the protests were talking to them, going
“we gotta keep moving. We’re just gonna keep walking and we’re gonna leave you here. And the police are gonna pick you up. So you can either keep walking with us, or you can, you know, do something stupid basically”.
Elwood: And i remember watching every single person just stop what they were doing and continue walking forward.
B: We just kept going. Like at the end ofthe day, it’s just not worth it. That’s not what we were there for. And while i don’t necessarily blame the people looting because I see where the frustration comes from. Us, personally, in the protest that we were at, was not about that. And that’s the preface i wanted to make.
Um, we had come to a corner where we were gonna go and try to, you know, go around the street. And there was another barricade of police. Kind of coming around the same angle. You know, blocking off the road so we couldn’t cross things like that.
Elwood: Well this was the first barricad of police that we had actually come up to. Like yeah, so what she’s talking about, this left and she is saying that protesters are kind of going straight. There’s a barricade of police here –
B: You can gostraight, and then there’s a lot of –
Elwood: Go right in front of them. Yeah to the left so we stopped almost right here, and they’re saying, you know. If anything’s gonna happen, you gotta stay peaceful. You gotta remember “hands up, don’t shoot”, “say their names”. You know, “I can’t breathe”,” no justice, no peace”. Wem this is a peaceful protest ,do not address, them do not throw things at them.
B: I think worst thing we ever said, or chanted, was “Fuck the police” and I have reserved my right to say that.
Elwood: Again, most of it was peaceful. I don’t, Ii didn’t know, But I didn’t see anybody throw anything until –
B: The police are complaining about being hit with rocks. I – it makes me irate, because they’re in full gear. They’re in full shields, armor, and they’re complaining about rocks as they’re shooting us and tear gassing us, you know?
Elwood: I would like to say they’re antagonizing. I will attest to the fact that they were beating on their shields and helmets and –
B: This was not a matter of one cop.They were all aggressive.
Elwood: Them in a lineyelling and growling and beating on their shields and that’s again why we turned away and didn’t try and just move forward. Um, so we’re going to the left. This is where we kind of all stopped and sort of faced the police at about six car lengths away. This is where you, me, and our other friend had been. And this is where I would like B to take over, because, I, this is where i kind of froze in headlights. Um.
B: So for Elwood here, I think it was kind of a shock. Like deer and headlights kind of thing. But this is definitely where it started getting to a head, and, yeah.
This is where we had been stopped right before everything happened. Um, immediately I saw one of the officers in the line raise up their arm. Like, I knew they had just pulled the, and they were going to, because i was standing right in front of Elwood. And she was just to the right behind me. Almost like a diagonal. And I turned back to look at her, and I go,
“El, you gotta move, you gotta move, you gotta move.”
And she’s just frozen in headlights.
And pretty much, right there, is where she dropped.
The following link will take you to images of the injuries suffered by Elwood that evening. We are not including them in the article to be sure to give you the choice to view them. Discretion is advised.