Blue lights flashed at several intersections around Monument Square this evening. I realized, as I returned to my car after meeting a friend, that patrol cars were blocking off Federal Street, which I intended to walk down.
Foot traffic wasn't stopped, so on I went. And then I heard chanting: "Hands up, don't shoot!" I realized that a protest or march was headed my way, lead by a slow moving police car, blue lights flashing.
I passed an officer walking along the sidewalk next to the procession. He smiled and nodded at me as he passed.
Some of the protesters wore "Black Lives Matter" t-shirts. Some wore head scarves. I saw a mother and daughter in sun dresses holding hands. Some held candles, others cell phones. Some people waved signs. A woman on the street started filming with her phone, and couple of the protesters came up to her, smiling and chanting. The diverse faces in the group lit up in the blue and white lights of the police cruiser.
Here were people who chose this Friday night to protest police brutality instead of going out to dinner or to the movies.
And here were police officers, at work, escorting people who were protesting the police.
By the time I reached my car, tears streamed down my face.
I was struck by the choreography of it all--the organization, the roads closed, the escorting officers, the way the crowd moved slowly, rhythmically. They way everyone involved moved together.
People coming together.
The police working together.
The people and the police moving through the city together.
I don't know what else to say.
I just wish there was a lot more "together" in the world.