Rally in downtown Fargo ends peacefully as police thank organizers
After days of conversations between Fargo-Moorhead area city leaders and organizers, a rally to honor the life of George Floyd happened at Fargo’s Island Park on Friday without incident.
The theme of the “One Fargo Rally” was unity and tearing down systemic racism.
“Of course we wanted to show up to show support for my brothers and sisters, as I would say, and make people realize that this is a huge problem going on,” Alexis Gustafson said.
SIgns were held calling for a better Fargo with people chanting “no justice, no peace,” and repeating George Floyd’s name.
Floyd was the Minneapolis man killed last week while in police custody. Four officers were arrested and charged in connection to his death.
“I mean obviously there’s a lot of police officers out here and I love seeing it. And we’ll talk about it time and time again, it’s going to take middle ground and compassion to see both sides of the story,” Davyd Zebly said.
Organizers with Black Lives Matter spoke about businesses, law enforcement, and schools needing to be held accountable for overlooking a person of color.
”Let's talk about my first best friend [who stopped] hanging out with me in the 5th grade because hanging out with black kids would lead him to trouble,” Frederick Edwards Jr. said.
Yet, the speakers, which included Fargo Mayor Tim Mahoney, State Rep. Ruth Buffalo (DFL), and Moorhead Mayor Johnathan Judd, made a point of saying it’s not a black or white thing. One injustice hurts the human race.
Most of those in attendance clapped in unison to everything that was said.
This event was in sharp contrast to what happened Saturday night when businesses in downtown Fargo were looted and vandalized.
National Guard members for North Dakota and Minnesota were mobilized as a precaution after credible threats were received related to the rally, according to state leaders.
Mayors from all three Fargo-Moorhead cities said they solely can't perform change.
In a social media post, the Fargo Police Department thanked the organizers and attendees for a peaceful event.