Black Lives Matter ‘from the hood to the holler’ at Prestonsburg demonstration

WYMT Mountain News Weekend Edition newscast at 11 p.m. on Saturday
Updated: Jun. 13, 2020 at 8:04 PM EDT
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More than 150 people gathered in Prestonsburg Saturday for the city’s Black Lives Matter demonstration.

The rally, one of many Eastern Kentucky has seen since the national movement began, brought people of all ages to the city’s main stage to hear from guest speakers like State Rep. Charles Booker.

Event organizer Dalton Goble said he wanted the event to celebrate the region’s people of color and learn how to be better neighbors.

“Most importantly, this movement seeks to aim to engage community members in conversation around black lives. How, you know, they are suffering while we are suffering and how we can mourn together and move forward together with actionable and reasonable solutions,” said Goble.

Those in the crowd marched through the city in solidarity to recognize the black people killed due to police brutality, chanting “No lives matter 'til black lives matter,” and other BLM messages. returning to the stage to hear from Floyd County law student Chynna Hibbetts.

“This isn’t a political issue. This isn’t a police issue. This is a humanity issue," said Hibbetts. “And it doesn’t take that much to be a good person.”

Hibbetts said she has always felt at home in the mountains and has not seen the national issues bleeding over into the Floyd County community, but she is proud to see the community recognize the issues and is happy to teach her daughter of their significance.

“The fact that she’s aware of what’s going on and knowing that she has the ability - and the other children have the ability - to change that moving forward," said Hibbetts.

Several people brought their younger children to experience the demonstration, which was something Blanche Hood was happy to see.

“I’m so grateful for the young people that are not people of color that had taken the initiative to step forward," Hood said.

Hood has lived in the county for more than 30 years and says she loves having her community behind her.

“Not that so much of the violence of police brutality is taking place in Floyd County, but that what’s happening in the world and to humanity means something to the people in Floyd County," Hood said.

During Booker’s speech, he echoed the sentiments. He said “from the hood to the holler,” racism has no place.

WYMT Mountain News Weekend Edition newscast at 6 p.m. on Saturday

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