On Saturday, June 6th, at 10:00 in the morning, a huge crowd was gathered at Torrance Beach to participate in and witness a "paddle out" organized by local high school students to honor and remember George Floyd and all who have fallen at the hands of police brutality.
Many people in the community came to participate; even a news reporters from Spectrum came to film and interview the children and adults alike who were involved. It was a beautiful demonstration of solidarity, especially since it was done by high school students. It is truly amazing to see kids so active in their community and so eager to do what they can to make a difference.
Two of the students involved in organizing the paddle out, Tomoi Stapleton and Marcellus Williams, spoke at the event. They both eagerly thanked everyone who had come to participate or watch, and Marcellus shared some personal words at the end of the event.
As a member of the black student union at Chadwick, where Marcellus attends high school, he feels a very personal connection to this cause. After his tearful speech, his classmates joined him in an embrace that really gave me hope for this generation, who come together and make their voices heard collectively at such a young age.
Let's take time to remember that there is hope for the future. Things like Saturday's paddle out are just one example of how change is happening. Slowly, but surely.