Monday Sunrise Briefing: Injustice protests reignited in Atlanta

Monday Sunrise Briefing: Injustice protests reignited in Atlanta

Why We Wrote This

Good morning! Welcome to your Monday, June 15, 2020, sunrise briefing. 

Here are two news events from this past weekend (while you may have been reading "White Fragility," dining outside, and enjoying an offline life). Also, what to look for in the news this week.

Steve Schaefer/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP

Defiant: Protestors gather outside a Wendy’s in Atlanta on Sunday, June 14, 2020, where Rayshard Brooks died after a confrontation with police officers at the fast food restaurant on Friday.


June 15, 2020

Another incident of excessive use of force re-ignited protests in Atlanta this weekend and prompted the resignation of the city’s police chief. Protesters burned a Wendy’s restaurant to the ground Saturday after a Black man was fatally shot by police while resisting detention during a sobriety check. Police videos of the shooting were released Sunday. One white officer was fired and another was put on administrative leave. In this case, police use of lethal force may hinge on the answer to the question: Is a Taser a deadly weapon

Republican lawmakers in the House and Senate are moving forward on police reforms, including de-escalation tactics, limits on use of force, and a federal registry of police misconduct complaints. Both major parties have agreed to a ban on chokeholds. Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, the lone Black Republican senator, is expected to introduce a police reform bill this week. 

Protests against racial injustice continued this weekend in cities around the country – as well as the U.K., France, Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. Many of the protests sought the removal of Confederate statues and symbols of slavery. In London, far-right and Black Lives Matters protestors clashed. “We are all human first, but we are divided by nationality, gender, religion, skin color,” said Mitsuaki Shidara at a protest march in Tokyo Sunday. He was  wearing a pendant with the Japanese character for “love.”

2. Europe reopens for Europeans. Countries are gradually reopening borders and allowing travel freely between European Union members. France is still requiring people from the U.K. to self-quarantine for two weeks. But Germany, like France and others, is lifting remaining border checks on Monday. Summer is the high tourist season and countries are hoping to kick start their economies. Tourists from the U.S., Asia, Latin America, Africa, and the Middle East will likely have to wait until next month, but details remain unclear.


REUTERS/Dylan Martinez

Unexpected help. Patrick Hutchinson, a Black Lives Matter protester, carries to safety a suspected far-right counter-protester who was injured near Waterloo station during a Black Lives Matter protest in London June 13, 2020.

Look Ahead

Tuesday, June 16

Will Minneapolis become the Selma of the North?

Words of economic wisdom? U.S. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is due to testify before the Senate Banking Committee on the first day of semi-annual testimony to Congress. 

For a better world.  “How to be an Antiracist” has been on the New York Times bestseller list for weeks. Author Ibram X. Kendi releases a new children’s book titled “Antiracist Baby,” intended to empower parents and kids to uproot inequality. 

Thursday, June 18

Destination Disney. Hong Kong Disneyland says it will reopen Thursday after being closed since January. It will limit the number of visitors and will require masks and health forms and use social distancing.

Friday, June 19

A freedom celebration. Juneteenth – aka Jubilee Day, African American Independence Day, and Freedom Day – marks the date in 1865 when a Union Army general announced that all slaves in Galveston, Texas were free. Although President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation went into effect in 1863, it wasn’t until after the Civil War ended (April 1865) did it begin to be enforced.  

Play ball! Professional baseball is scheduled to return to the diamond in Japan. But U.S. major league fans are still waiting for a start date. The players’ union and owners can’t agree on the finances of a shortened season. 

Saturday, June 20. 

Let it shine. The longest day of the year occurs in the Northern Hemisphere today, which is the summer solstice. For our friends Down Under, it’s the winter solstice. 

Trump on the stump. President Trump goes to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to hold his first presidential re-election rally since the pandemic lockdowns began in March. The rally will be held indoors, at a 19,000-seat arena. Public health officials say it’s too soon. 

A hankering for the hardcourt. Pro basketball is scheduled to resume in China today. In the U.S., the NBA is slated to resume its season in July with 22 teams competing for playoff spots in Orlando, Florida..  

Generosity Watch

Kara Colt Scott via Facebook

Mom put out the word on Facebook that her 10-year-old twins, Koby and Cooper Smith of Nederland, Texas, were fundraising for a good cause. They brought in more than $1,500.

Koby and Cooper Smith of Nederland, Texas, are what you might call lemonade activists.

Since the age of 5, the twin brothers have been filling cups in their front yard and donating their earnings. Last Saturday, the 10-year old boys raised more than $1,500 for another set of twins, Archie and William Burden. The Burden twins were born premature and, at almost 3 months old, are defying the medical odds. The Smith boys saw a need and stepped up.

“They wielded the lemonade stand,” Kara Colt Smith, the boys’ mom, told The News in Port Arthur, Texas. “The community did the rest. I love our community.”

And the boys have learned that unleashing generosity is largely about setting the table and inviting others to participate. “Without everybody we wouldn’t have the money together,” said Koby. “It’s kind of like everybody didn’t think they had a voice to help out, but once we did the lemonade stand everybody did.”

The Smith boys – giving voice to a compassionate community.

Hidden gem

Start your week with a recent story that inspired Monitor readers:

Life after COVID-19: Recovered New Yorkers find hope in helping others

Sneak preview

In tonight’s Daily Edition, watch for our story about L.A.s premier African-American bookstore, which is experiencing a surge in orders for books about race, Black history, and Black literature. 

Get the Monitor Stories you care about delivered to your inbox.

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy.

Finally, check out the Monitor’s selected stories from Friday’s subscription-only Daily Edition:

  • How China’s heavy steps in Hong Kong reverberate in Taiwan
  • For ‘victory over the enemy,’ can Americans unite under pandemic?
  • The case for uppercase: Commentary on style, dignity, and Black culture
  • How support for Black Lives Matter has surged, in one chart
  • Eat well, do good: Bread for the People makes giving back delicious
  • Editor’s note: As a public service, all our coronavirus coverage is free. No paywall.

    This is a beta test – an experiment with an early Monday news update. Please give us your feedback via the link below and let us know what you think. Thank you!

    Related stories