HUNDREDS of people came together on Saturday to say with one voice that Black lives matter.
Politicians, families, activists and clergy attended the event, organised by Bracknell Against Racism.
The event aimed to raise awareness of issues such as racist ignorance on social media and in the community. Speakers shared their own personal experiences of racism, and challenged the audience to do more.
Michael Karim said: “I was one of the few people who looked different in school and, as a result, was attacked physically every day. The teachers turned a blind eye.”
He added: “Politicians continue to try and divide people using racism for their own career success and greed. I’ve travelled the world on medical business been consistently racially profiled for boarding flights to the US.”
But, he said, “We are all people with more in common than we have differences. We have a common enemy of racism to overcome.
“Time and again, we see that politicians are ready to inflame racial hatred. We have to fight this in our workplaces, schools, political groups and everywhere.”
He continued: “The only way to combat racism is to make it known … Everyone has a responsibility to stamp it out.”
Other speakers included Mustafa Chaudhary from the Reading Muslim Council who read a statement given in the wake of the murder of George Floyd: “We are against all types of injustice and discrimination, irrespective of the form it takes – whether it is based on colour, race, gender, nationality, or religion. Wrong is wrong, regardless of the perpetrator.”
And Bracknell Against Racism founder, Karima Moustafa encouraged the assembled, who were all social distanced, to take a knee for a moment of reflection.
At the end of the rally, she said: “I’m so happy to see everyone come together despite political views, to say that Black lives matter. This is just the beginning of a very, very long revolution.”