NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - From the protests over the past two weeks, it’s clear what thousands across the country are marching for: justice, police reform, equality and an end to what they say is systemic racism.

But how does the nation achieve that?

“There’s not one way - one or two ways. It’s just so complicated because systemic racism is so present and it influences our every day lives, yet you can’t touch it.” Rev. Cherisna Jean-Marie with the Scarritt Bennett Center said.

Vic Sorrell, an HIV educator and anti-racist advocate, said if we want to seriously dismantle systemic racism as a nation, everyone has to be on board.

“I believe that it's White people claiming the issue as our own. For these conversations to go in spaces where no Black spaces are present. That does not happen, and that has to happen,” Sorrell said.

Jean-Marie said informing yourself on systemic racism and how it exists is another start.

“To educate yourself about these ideologies that are in place that we’re so socialized in that we don’t even realize that we have these ideologies,” Jean-Marie said.

Within the past few days, we have seen changes and efforts made for solutions across the nation. In Nashville, Mayor John Cooper announced that body cameras will be deployed for the police department in July.

In Washington D.C., Democratic lawmakers unveiled a massive police reform bill, which includes banning choke-holds and no-knock warrants in drug cases.

On Twitter, President Donald Trump said the move from Democrats sought to "Defund" police departments, adding that he wants "Law and Order."

For Racial Equity Coach Cecilia Olusola Tribble, change also starts by enforcing comprehensive policy in all facts of government.

“I think all over the country, we have fallen asleep on our local and state governments. I think everybody is so wrapped up in national politics, and that absolutely matters. But we have to call out the seeds of racism here at home,” Tribble said.

It’s a daunting task, but given the worldwide response to George Floyd’s death, Tribble is hopeful.

“ I feel, as heavy as this moment is, I feel very encouraged by the different actions that are happening and the conversations that are happening,” Tribble said.

Experts also said self-care is essential to get through these times. They also plan on having a community discussion about justice and systemic racism. Click for information.


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