Protest Group Displays 'Black Lives Matter' Shirts at Forever 21 Storefront
A group called "Never 21" organized the protest to spread awareness about young black women and men being killed by police before their 21st birthdays.
In light of recent violence and riots, an activist group called The Never 21 is spreading awareness about young black women and men being killed by police before their 21st birthdays, starting with an effort that began Saturday at the Forever 21 on Union Square in NYC.
The group posed as Forever 21 employees and dressed mannequins in shirts that read "Black Lives Matter," Buzzfeed reported. The protest occurred in shifts, with the first group entering the second floor with a banner that read "Black Lives Matter" and "www.never21.com" followed by another group that walked into the store to dress the mannequins and hang shirts on the racks.
According to the Never 21 site, which mimics Forever 21, the organization is dedicated to telling the stories of youth who "never given the chance to see age 21, or any age there after, so we respond by reminding the public of the battle that we are still actively fighting."
Among those whose stories are being told include 7-year-old Aiyana Jones (killed in a botched SWAT raid 2010); 18-year-old Michael Brown (shot by a police officer near his Ferguson, Missouri home in 2014); 12-year-old Tamir Rice (killed in the city park across from his Cleveland, Ohio home in 2014); and 17-year-old Trayvon Martin (shot by an officer after buying candy near his Sanfrod, Florida home in 2012).
The Never 21's mission comes on the heel of the recent riots in Baltimore after Freddie Gray's death, in which he suffered from a spinal cord injury while in police custody.