BY MARTA VI GAIA| Consciousness and morality must meet at some point with integrity. These are our young people in the streets.
On June 1, I met them on Avenue D, where people gathered and made signs. They slowly moved up Houston St.
Protesting against the murder of George Floyd, and a long list of similar cases, the chants were about justice.
In outstretched arms, many people held handmade signs for Black Lives Matter.
In the last three months, we have been cooped up, at a time when we are ready to spring, and renew our energies. There is a feeling of a general release of cabin fever. People were happy to be out, and together doing the right thing peacefully.
At several points, the crowd collectively took a knee, even in front of the Police Headquarters in Lower Manhattan. It was a clear message of peace, and honor for the victims of brutality.
No one was about breaking anything there. But there was a trio who began quarreling.
I ended up very close to them as I walked around the periphery reading signs and trying to keep this confusing distance due to the COVID-19.
Then I noticed a fellow who, with violent energy, began punching a car. He was looking at the crowd, as if inviting everyone to join in on the action. He looked peculiar, for it was hot outside, and while most of us wore short sleeves, this man had on a winter jacket zipped up to his neck.
I walked over to him and hugged him, and whispered in his ear that there was no need for violence, and to just let it go. He backed off from me very fast. I was glad, relieved really, and a bit surprised, for he looked so angry. But I think he was just pretending.
It wasn’t till later that I realized, the whole scene was a cop skit, to instigate demonstrators. Once I hugged the stranger, the car’s driver looked at the crowd and said, “I am on your side,” and left, in a happy, relaxed mood. He was followed by the third member of the trio, a woman, who became quiet and quickly forgot her complaint of the driver backing up too close to her — something I had not witnessed.
The man I impulsively hugged disappeared into the crowd. I had noticed that when I embraced him, he had felt extremely flat and hard.
Later, as I thought of the incident, I realized that he was wearing a bullet-proof vest. The jacket was a cover-up, and the bike helmet was part of his protective gear. Please take good care of your selves, and be aware of those who easily become easily ready to destroy.
The East River has been so clean that you can see the bottom at low tide, and the sky has been amazingly blue.
COVID-19 has been an unfortunate reality for many of us, but it has given the world a rest from all the industrial toxins.
I wish we can move forward into a better way of living for our future generations.