NAACPs of Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton Gather to Honor George Floyd

Written by on June 8, 2020

NAACPs of Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton Gather to Honor George Floyd

By Tracy Yatsko

June 8, 2020

Photo | Tracy Yatsko / WLVR

Protests over the death of George Floyd while in custody of the Minneapolis Police – continued around the world and around Pennsylvania. On Saturday, June 6, there were marches in Allentown and a gathering of thousands in Philadelphia. On Sunday, June 7, a march in Allentown. 

Hundreds gathered on a hot Saturday afternoon at Bethlehem City Hall for a vigil for George Floyd. It was jointly sponsored by the NAACPs of Allentown, Bethlehem and Easton. In contrast to the two large rallies at this location in the past week, this one had an air of quiet determination among the participants. 

“I can’t breathe. I can’t breathe.”

That’s Esther Lee, long time civil rights activist and President of the Bethlehem NAACP. She led the event and said she wants the Lehigh Valley to know that change is coming.

“What we’re going to do here in Bethlehem is correcting this problem of racism as we move forward.”

Speakers included Bethlehem’s Mayor Bob Donchez, NAACP presidents and local faith leaders. Rabbi Michael Singer of Congregation Brith Sholom spoke on Shabbat, the holy day of the jewish faith, to send a message of unity.

“We know that justice delayed, as Dr. King said, is justice denied. For 400 years every generation has failed our African American siblings,” said Singer.

The vigil ended with the crowd singing We Shall Overcome and eight minutes of silence to honor George Floyd. 


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