Politics

People Are Sharing TikTok Videos Of What It’s Really Like On The Front Lines Of The US Protests

"This is America."

As protests over the death of George Floyd spread across the United States, they’ve been met by riot squads at every turn.

Tear gas, rubber bullets and batons have become the tools of choice for officers responding to what started out as a peaceful protest on the streets of Minneapolis.

Now, the situation has deteriorated to such as extent that riots, looting and violent clashes between police and protestors are taking place across the country.

But for every scene that gets captured by a news camera there are thousands more captured by people actually taking part in the protests — and for every clip that gets shown on mainstream television there are thousands more being shared online.

Right now Black Lives Matter content is taking over TikTok as protesters work to influence the narrative that’s being spun about their movement.

The clips give an incredible insight into what’s taking place across the country.

A remix of Childish Gambino’s 2018 hit This Is America has also become somewhat of an anthem for the protests on TikTok. The song is known for its commentary on race and police brutality.

Listening to it now — accompanied by vision of riots squads firing tear gas and rubber bullets — makes the entire situation feel even more sinister.

Much of the footage that has been broadcast has been hard to believe.

However, the level of anger is unsurprising given the fact that George Floyd is the latest in a long line of black men to die at the hands of white police officers.

Back in 2016 Black NFL player Colin Kaepernick was pilloried when he started protesting police brutality by kneeling during the national anthem. Later the concerns of Black Lives Matter protesters were dismissed by people claiming ‘All Lives Matter’.

Now that rioting has turned up the heat, they’re being criticised for not protesting peacefully — but TikTok videos have shown that actually, many of them are.

Footage of one protest shows thousands of people with their fists raised in the air in solidarity. They knelt in silence — adopting the same stance as the police officer who knelt of the neck of George Floyd before he died.

Another shows clips of protesters dancing and taking part in a flash mob.

The protests are taking place across the country, with people taking to the streets in New York, LA, Chicago, Washington, Portland, Denver, Michigan, Ohio and more.

They’ve even sparked solidarity protests in other countries, including the UK, Canada and now Australia — with those planned in capital cities for later in the week.