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Hundreds Convene On Boise Capitol To Protest George Floyd's Death

Hundreds showed up to the capitol building in Boise on Sunday afternoon to protest George Floyd’s death. 

That was after some initial confusion over the event. Multiple social media events sprung up last week for Sunday morning or afternoon, including marches around downtown. Some even called for protesters to rebuke the events altogether, citing concerns over violent undertones and the people behind the protests. 

That didn’t deter the several hundred who showed up Sunday, though. Anyone who wanted to speak was welcomed to talk to the group through a bullhorn. 

People shared their stories and perspectives on racism, fear, hope for change, and sorrow over the death of George Floyd and many others like him.

Shala Browning is a Boise native and mother to a 16-year-old boy. She shared her anxieties and reactions to Floyd’s death at the protest.

Credit Madelyn Beck / Mountain West News Bureau
Mountain West News Bureau
Shala Browning is a Boise native and mom to a 16-year-old boy. She said this was her first protest.

“It’s not ok. We’re tired of it. And we want to know what we can do. This is just one step. So now what do we do after this? Everybody’s going to go home, but what gets done after today?” she asked. 

She added that it’s going to take more than just her.  

“I could tell you all day long how I feel, but we all have our own opinions and together as a community we could make things work definitely,” she said.

The protest was peaceful, though there were a few moments of disagreement in the crowd. One involved a man in a Hawaiian shirt and a few firearms walking into the crowd. Some started shouting and saying that he was trying to intimidate the protesters, but an older woman stepped in and talked with the armed man instead.

Only about a dozen uniformed police officers were around, either on foot or on a bike. None were in riot gear. 

Anthony Bruner also came to the Boise protest and spoke. He's black with a 10-year-old son and fears for his son's life. He’d like to see these kinds of protests spark more permanent change.

“We have to do something. And the government officials, they have to work with us,” he said. “Or if not, what’s going on right now is going to grow. It’s going to grow because people are tired.”

Find reporter Madelyn Beck on Twitter @MadelynBeck8

Copyright 2020 Boise State Public Radio

Madelyn Beck is Boise State Public Radio's regional reporter with the Mountain West News Bureau.