A Seattle neighborhood remains a protest haven with murals, merchants, public speakers – and no police in sight. The “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone” still stands despite criticism from President Donald Trump, who called on city and state leaders to “Take back your city NOW.”
In Louisville, Kentucky, no-knock search warrants have been banned by the city council. The new ordinance is called Breonna’s Law, named after 26-year-old Breonna Taylor, an unarmed black woman who was fatally shot by police in her own apartment in March.
Friday also marks a week from Juneteenth, a holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. On June 19, President Donald Trump also plans to hold his first campaign rally since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Tulsa, Oklahoma, is the site of one of the deadliest incidents of racist violence in American history and Trump’s planned visit has already drawn criticism.
Senate measure: Confederate leaders’ names could be removed within 3 years
The names of Confederate generals would be stripped from bases, building, planes, ships and even streets within three years under a sweeping amendment approved by the Senate Armed Services Committee that represents a direct challenge to President Donald Trump’s assertion that the names would remain.
A committee would be established under the measure, described Thursday to USA TODAY by Senate aides familiar with the amendment, to identify military assets that bear names honoring the Confederacy. The aides were not authorized to offer details of the measure publicly.
The committee’s action is the latest in a rapidly moving series of moves to address the legacy of the Confederacy in the military and across the country.
– Tom Vanden Brook and Sarah Elbeshbishi
Smithsonian curators collecting artifacts to document George Floyd protests
Curators from Smithsonian museums in Washington, D.C., are collecting artifacts to document the worldwide protests sparked by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on Memorial Day.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture created a “Rapid Response Collecting Team” for curators, including from two other Smithsonian museums, to collect protest signs, T-shirts, photographs, audio recordings, cell phone footage and art.
Some curators were on the streets near the White House amid protests to “build relationships with people on the ground to keep the conversation open for potential collecting,” a spokesperson told the DCist.
“So much of what happened in the distant past, in many ways, set the stage for what is happening right now, in the summer of 2020, as people gather in groups, large and small, to claim their rights for equality,” Aaron Bryant, curator of photography and visual culture, said in a news release.
Curators are also asking the public to upload photographs of their objects at https://nmaahc.si.edu/donate-item.
City officials in Camden, New Jersey, remove Christopher Columbus statue
A New Jersey city near Philadelphia has taken down a statue of Christopher Columbus, joining others across the country. The city of Camden called the statue in Farnham Park a “controversial symbol” that has “long pained residents of the community.”
Video from local news outlets showed the statue coming down Thursday night. The city’s statement says “a plan to reexamine these outdated symbols of racial division and injustices” is overdue.
Protesters mobilized by the death of Floyd at the hands of police have called for the removal of statues of Columbus. They say the Italian explorer is responsible for the genocide and exploitation of native peoples in the Americas. Statues of Columbus have also been toppled or vandalized in cities such as Miami; Richmond, Virginia; St. Paul, Minnesota, and Boston, where one was decapitated.
California university removes name of ex-president from prominent building
The University of Southern California has removed the name and bust of Rufus Von KleinSmid, an ex-president who supported eugenics, from one of its campus buildings, officials announced Thursday.
“This moment is our Call to Action, a call to confront anti-Blackness and systemic racism, and unite as a diverse, equal, and inclusive university. You have asked for actions, not rhetoric, and actions, now,” President Carol L. Folt said in a statement.
The decision comes after students held a Black Lives Matter solidarity march on Saturday, the Daily Trojan reported. A student also created an online petition demanding university officials to rename the building and acknowledge anti-black racism amid nationwide protests sparked by the death of George Floyd.
More than 100 photos in Facebook gallery of Walmart looters in North Carolina
The Fayetteville/Cumberland County Crimestoppers in North Carolina on Thursday uploaded a gallery of 114 photos to Facebook, all featuring suspected looters at a Walmart.
The gallery shows people — many not wearing masks — leaving the store with televisions, entering the store while apparently chatting on phones, and a few are entering the store with smiles on their faces. The store was hit by looters on May 31, the Fayetteville Observer, part of the USA TODAY Network, reported.
The album has been shared more than 30,000 times as of Thursday night. Other photos of suspected looters have also been shared on the page.
– Jordan Culver
Friday is Loving Day. Here’s what that means
Richard and Mildred Loving were a Virginia couple that traveled to Washington, D.C., in 1958 to get married after Mildred got pregnant.
Not long after they returned home to Caroline County, Virginia, they were woken in the middle of the night by policeman who informed them they were breaking the law. Facing either jail time or being forced to leave the state, the couple chose the latter, but Mildred wrote a letter to then-Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy pleading their case.
A lawyer from the ACLU took their case, which eventually made its way to the Supreme Court where it was unanimously overturned on June 12, 1967.
Designer Ken Tanabe helped popularize the holiday, but has asked people marking the occasion this year take “a meaningful pause” to stand in solidarity with the black community in light of the national conversations about racism.
– N’dea Yancey-Bragg