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George Floyd’s Final Words Get Beamed In The Skies In Poignant Aerial Protest

Image via Jammie Holmes

A small plane carrying a banner with the phrase, “They’re Going to Kill Me,” floated across the skies past the Statue of Liberty and over the Hudson River in New York on Saturday.

Similar banners embossed with the phrases “Please I Can’t Breathe,” “My Stomach Hurts,” “My Neck Hurts,” and “Everything Hurts” were also seen gliding across the nation in Detroit, Miami, Los Angeles, and New York respectively on the same day.

These were the final words uttered by George Floyd, who was killed by a cop from the Minneapolis Police Department on 25 May 2020. Floyd’s death spurred protests across the nation to call out the racial injustice in the country.

Upon viewing the viral video of Floyd’s final moments, Dallas-based artist Jammie Holmes took it upon himself to shed light on the issue through an aerial demonstration.

With financial support from the Library Street Collective, a gallery in Detroit representing him, the demonstration held up in the skies was set up within 48 hours. Holmes described his project as “an act of social conscience and protest” on his website.

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In response to the recent murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police, I initiated a public demonstration that extended across 5 cities on Saturday, May 30 between the hours of 11:30 AM and 9 PM EST. Airplanes with banners presenting Floyd’s final words connected these places across the United States to support Minneapolis in a national protest against police brutality within the African American community.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ DETROIT: PLEASE I CAN’T BREATHE. ⁠⠀ MIAMI: MY STOMACH HURTS. ⁠⠀ DALLAS: MY NECK HURTS. ⁠⠀ LOS ANGELES: EVERYTHING HURTS. ⁠⠀ NEW YORK: THEY’RE GOING TO KILL ME.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ This presentation is an act of social conscience and protest meant to bring people together in their shared incense at the inhumane treatment of American citizens. The deployment of Floyd’s last words in parts of its whole across the country underlines a need for unity and the conviction that what happened to George Floyd is happening all over America.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ Like countless silenced and fearful young black men, I have been the victim of police misconduct on a number of occasions in my life. At some point, they will realize they can’t kill us all.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ Thank you to my gallery, Library Street Collective, for their generous support.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ #BlackLivesMatter #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd #JammieHolmes #JHolmes @LibraryStreetCollective #LibraryStreetCollective⁠⠀ Photos by @hayden__scott, Andre De Aguilar, Mark LaBoyteaux, @ItsSlickRick, @suekwon_

A post shared by Jammie Holmes (@jholmes214) on Jun 1, 2020 at 9:04am PDT

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A post shared by Melissa (@polycristalline) on Jun 1, 2020 at 11:59pm PDT

[via The New York Times, cover image via Jammie Holmes]