together as a group and asserting our place in the streets and the right to protest peacefully.
JOSIE STANFIELD, 28
Hearing the story about George Floyd, seeing the posts that were going around about it, and just the energy that was created from it really motivated me—because I have three children. It really pushed me to stand up and do something. So when I organized the first protest, I actually had the intention of just going out there alone. Because I live in such a small town, I really didn’t think anyone was going to go anyways. It’s 0.8 percent Black where I live. So I was like, I’m just gonna organize this and just go out there alone, me and my friend, and you know, that’s gonna be it. But it ended up being much bigger than that. Over a thousand people showed up.
GREG EDWARDS, 31
Everyone was still pretty much in lockdown at that point and I hadn’t been in any sort of crowded situation. I hadn’t been around more than, like, two people for months at that point and I had just come out of the woods, so I knew I wanted to go but also was nervous about attending such a populated gathering at a time when we’re not supposed to be having large gatherings. I spent a lot of time making sure I had a mask and bringing hand sanitizer and making a sign. And then I went.
I definitely felt uncomfortable, probably from a white-fragility standpoint of like, “Should I be here? Do I have any authority to be here on this issue?”—before realizing that, you know, we all need to do something. But then when I was there, for the first time in two or three months I saw everyone that I know in Bangor—you know, through masks and signs and a really crowded, weird place. It was reassuring, that all the familiar people I know in Bangor were there. And then there was a talk. It was not super well organized, so you couldn’t hear the speakers from more than twenty