Marianne Williamson

Author
Jump to  stances on the issues
Marianne Williamson dropped out of the presidential race on January 10, 2020. This page is no longer being updated.
Williamson, who is widely known for her books, is calling for “a moral and spiritual awakening in the country.” She has pushed to expand social safety net programs and has said she would immediately pursue reparations to the descendants of slaves, but has cautioned that Democrats won’t beat Trump by just “having all these plans.”
Attended Pomona College, 1970-1972
July 8, 1952
Divorced
Jewish
India
Co-founder, Project Angel Food, 1989
WILLIAMSON IN THE NEWS
Marianne Williamson endorses Bernie Sanders for president
Updated 7:24 PM ET, Sun Feb 23, 2020
Former Democratic hopeful Marianne Williamson made a surprise appearance at Sen. Bernie Sanders' rally Sunday in Austin, Texas, to announce her endorsement of the Democratic front-runner. "Bernie Sanders has taken a stand, and Bernie Sanders has been taking a stand for a very long time. He has been consistent, he has been convicted, he has been committed. And now it's time, I'm here and you're here, because it's time for us to take a stand with Bernie," Williamson told the crowd in Austin. Williamson dropped out of the Democratic race on January 10. She had endorsed Sanders in his first presidential run in May 2015. On Sunday, she argued that Sanders is proving the Democratic establishment wrong. "We're being told oh, it can't happen. He can't beat (President Donald) Trump. Bernie can't beat Trump, it can't happen," Williamson said. "I'll tell you what's already happened to those who say it cannot happen. You just tell them this. It already happened. He won Iowa. It already happened, he won New Hampshire. It already happened, he won Nevada," Williamson added, pointing to Sanders' growing momentum. The recanvass of more than 100 Iowa caucus precincts ended last week, resulting in former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg's lead over Sanders tightening to a fraction of a standard delegate equivalent. The tightening did not, however, impact the national delegate count, which awarded Buttigieg 14 national delegates out of Iowa, compared to Sanders' 12 delegates, according to the Iowa State Democratic Party. Ahead of the Iowa caucuses in January, Williamson, who had already dropped out, had said she would campaign for Andrew Yang in Iowa, hoping to keep him in the race, but stopping short of an outright endorsement. "Bernie and Elizabeth will make it past Iowa and beyond; I admire them both, but right now they don't need my help," Williamson wrote last month. "I'm lending my support to Andrew in Iowa, hopefully to help him get past the early primaries & remind us not to take ourselves too seriously." But on Sunday in Austin, Williamson touted her support for the Vermont senator. "Today, we're tired of saying pretty please. We're going to stand up, we're going to show up because we woke up, "Williamson said. "We're here and we're with Bernie."
READ MORE
STANCES ON THE ISSUES
climate crisis
Close Accordion Pane
Williamson supports the Green New Deal, the broad plan to address renewable-energy infrastructure and climate change proposed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, though she says on her campaign website that “it doesn’t cover the whole range of measures we must undertake to reverse global warming.” She supports US participation in the Paris climate agreement, a landmark 2015 deal on global warming targets that Trump has pledged to abandon. She’s also set a goal of reaching 100% reduction of emissions by 2030. Williamson would phase out sales of vehicles with combustion engines – “fossil fuel vehicles” – by 2035 and remove cars that require fossil fuels from the road by 2050. She would electrify all rail traffic by 2030 and require all new airplanes to use biofuels by 2035. Williamson would also restart Obama’s Clean Power Plan, which set limits on carbon pollution from US power plants. But she has said she does not support expanding nuclear power, would ban fracking and would create mandatory carbon fees to mitigate the damage from fossil fuels. She pledges to appoint “a world-class environmentalist” to run the Environmental Protection Agency. More on Williamson’s climate crisis policy
economy
Open Accordion Pane
Williamson describes economic inequality as a dire threat to the future of American democracy and unchecked corporate power as “a sociopathic economic system,” according to her campaign website. She proposes offering all working-age Americans a universal basic income of $1,000 a month and backs a “universal savings program” – a trust fund created at birth with a government deposit, with the government matching family contributions on a sliding scale as children grow up. Williamson says she would pay for her programs by rolling back tax cuts for businesses and the wealthy from Trump’s 2017 tax law, including restoring the tax on estates over $5 million, while keeping middle-class tax reductions intact. She also proposes adding a fee to financial transactions. When it comes to trade, Williamson says she likes what Trump has done on China. She opposed the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement, an 11-nation deal negotiated under Obama that Trump withdrew from in one of his first acts as President. She has, however, echoed other Democrats by expressing concern over Trump’s newly negotiated United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, a successor to President Bill Clinton’s 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement. More on Williamson’s economic policy
education
Open Accordion Pane
Williamson supports universal preschool, would raise funding for free and reduced-price meals in schools and would expand curriculums to focus on meditation, anti-bullying and other emotional learning programs, according to her campaign website. She is calling for free college or technical training for certain students, potentially paid for through a payroll tax on graduates or a public service requirement. Like other Democratic candidates, she is also calling for student loan forgiveness and for cutting interest rates on student loans. More on Williamson’s education policy
gun violence
Open Accordion Pane
Williamson has called for universal background checks and a ban on high-capacity magazines. She supports “mandatory waiting periods for all gun dealers, including gun shows and sporting retailers,” requiring child safety locks on all stored firearms and banning all so-called assault rifles as well as semi-automatic weapons, according to her website. Williamson supports so-called “red flag” laws, which allow families and police to petition a judge to temporarily block someone’s access to firearms if there is credible concern they might hurt themselves or others. More on Williamson’s gun violence policy
healthcare
Open Accordion Pane
Williamson supports providing a government-run health care program that individuals can voluntarily buy into. “I think a lot of people would gravitate to that,” she said at a CNN town hall in 2019. “If people want private insurance or want to augment it, then they should be able to.” At the town hall, she said she sees health care as a broader conversation about things that stress Americans, toxins in food and the impact of environmental policies. Williamson told The Washington Post that undocumented immigrants should be covered under this government-run program. More on Williamson’s health care policy
immigration
Open Accordion Pane
Williamson supports a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants living in the US who lack a “serious criminal background issue.” Williamson also supports the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which shields from deportation some undocumented immigrants who arrived in the US as minors. That program was formally canceled by Trump but remains in limbo. She argues that Trump’s proposed border wall is “expensive, impractical, and unlikely to address any of the real challenges we face,” according to her website. She believes the solution to undocumented immigration lies heavily in the war on drugs, “which has created rampant crime and violence among our neighbors.” More on Williamson’s immigration policy
LATEST POLITICAL NEWS
George Floyd protests across the US
Updated 11:31 PM ET, Sat Jun 6, 2020
In Seattle, Washington, police and protesters are clashing near Capitol Hill. Police, standing on the other side of a fence, appear to be trying to clear protesters by using flash bangs on the street. There is smoke hanging in the air. This comes after the Seattle police chief ordered the suspension of tear gas in crowd management on Friday. Earlier today in Atlanta, the marches saw pockets of joy, as protesters danced to blaring music on the crowded streets. They danced to Childish Gambino's "This is America," and did the electric slide dance near Centennial Olympic Park in the city's downtown. The mood was light, with cheering and applause. Families marched with children; at one point, a live band even played on top of a parking garage. “Music has completely changed the atmosphere, as you can see," the band director told CNN. "As soon as we started playing, the crowd just immediately came this way. We just want justice. We understand what’s going on. Music will bring togetherness and everybody is here now." CNN Correspondent Martin Savidge said: "We went from a street protest to what is now a party in the street -- but still with the consciousness of what this is all about. You can dance and still chant 'Black Lives Matter.'" It's a stark contrast to just a week ago. Last Friday, there was chaos on the streets of Atlanta, when demonstrators lit a car on fire and broke windows at the CNN Center. Protesters threw firecrackers at police and smoke bombs into buildings. It's past curfew in the city of Buffalo, in upstate New York, but there is still a small group of protesters on the street. They're gathered in Niagara Square, in the city's downtown -- where police officers pushed over and injured a 75-year-old man, Martin Gugino, during protests on Thursday night. Video of the demonstration shows a row of officers walking toward Gugino and two pushing him. His head bleeds onto the sidewalk as officers walk past him, some looking down at him. Gugino was hospitalized with a head injury. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo called the incident "wholly unjustified and utterly disgraceful," and said on Twitter that "police officers must enforce — NOT ABUSE — the law." Officers plea not guilty: The two officers were suspended without pay, and pleaded not guilty earlier today to charges of assault in the second degree. Following their suspension, 57 Buffalo police officers resigned from the force's emergency response team. They did not resign from the force. It's about 10:30 p.m. in New York and Washington, DC, and 7:30 p.m. in Los Angeles, but big crowds are still out on the streets in both cities, and spirits are high. In New York, protesters are marching through Greenwich Village in downtown Manhattan. Curfew was at 8 p.m., but there isn't a heavy police presence tonight, and police haven't been enforcing the curfew with arrests like earlier this week. The protesters have been marching for hours now. Some of the organizers and leaders keep morale up with call-and-response chants like "Do not engage, we are united, we are peaceful" and "United, the people will never be defeated." "The system is not going to win," one protester told CNN. "The people have a voice now and they're listening to us. They're listening to us because we are united. They're listening to us because stuff like this happens in the middle of Manhattan, where thousands upon thousands of people don't have to let injustice happen anymore." In Washington, DC, crowds are massive tonight -- perhaps the biggest since they began, said CNN Correspondent Alex Marquadt on the scene. Curfew was lifted earlier this week, and protests remain peaceful. People are gathering on the edge of Lafayette Park, close to the White House, taking photos with a new street sign that reads "Black Lives Matter Plaza." There are some members of law enforcement and National Guard troops in sight -- but nowhere near the aggressive numbers seen earlier in the week, Marquadt said. In Los Angeles, curfew has also been lifted and protests remain peaceful, with the mood light tonight. The marchers, numbering at least 1,000, is diverse, said CNN reporter Lucy Kafanov on the scene. She described seeing "members of the Asian community, Latino community, white people, black people, LGBTQ, everyone." "The community vibe is really notable," she said. "There's a lot of folks walking around handing out snacks, masks, hand sanitizer, food for the demonstrators ... One of the beautiful things on a human level we've seen is, as they go past various apartment buildings, people come out to their balconies, start clapping pot and pans in solidarity of the protest." The Black Lives Matter movement and ongoing US protests have struck a chord with many around the world -- perhaps most notably in Paris, where protesters have been demonstrating throughout the week, and are on the streets again on Saturday. The Paris protesters are marching in solidarity with those in the United States -- but also to protest racial injustice and police brutality in their own country. At least 20,000 people demonstrated in Paris on Tuesday, in support of the family of Adama Traoré, a black man who died in 2016 in Paris police custody. Traoré died on his 24th birthday after he was taken into police custody for fleeing an identity check. His sister, Assa Traoré, says police told her his final words were "I can't breathe." Adama and George Floyd "died in the exact same way. They carried the weight of ... three cops on them. They had the same words," she told CNN. The protests on Saturday: Earlier in the day, several thousand people demonstrated in Paris as well as other French cities. Traoré's name appears often in these protests, on signs and in chants -- but protesters here have also adopted some of the slogans from their counterparts in the US, like "No justice, no peace." "You really sense this is a movement that's been given inspiration," said CNN Correspondent Melissa Bell at the scene. The protests are seeing large crowds gather in close quarters across the country -- and, experts warn, could lead to a second wave of Covid-19 infections. "Honestly, I am worried about a new spike. But I was worried about this new spike well before there were protests," said epidemiologist and former Detroit health commissioner Abdul El-Sayed. But, he added, "I don't want to folks to think that we're pitting public health against the protests -- because we know that in excess of 83,000 black Americans die every year because of racism and that itself is also a public health issue." Instead of framing it as a choice between protesting and coronavirus, here are some things he suggested protesters do to keep themselves as safe as possible: Wear a face mask Avoid shouting if possible, as more droplets are projected from the mouth when shouting. Instead, consider carrying signs or using objects to make noise. Stay in tight groups and avoid intermingling with other or bigger groups, to limit potential exposure. Authorities have a responsibility to address these concerns too, he said: keeping people tightly packed together in vans or cells can be dangerous for potential infection. The Commander of the Washington, DC National Guard told CNN in an exclusive interview today that some of the nearly 4,000 additional National Guard forces brought to DC from other states could leave as early as Monday.  The presence of approximately 3,900 out-of-state National Guard members has been a major point of contention between DC officials and the Trump administration. “They will be redeploying this week. Probably as early as Monday,” said Maj. Gen. William Walker, the commanding general of the DC National Guard, told CNN in the interview. He said that the out-of-state National Guard forces, hailing from 11 states, had been requested by the Defense Department to bolster the 1,200-strong DC contingent that had been activated. He added that National Guard troops were not involved in using force to clear Lafayette Park on Monday night -- an action that caused many former military officers to criticize the Trump administration’s handling of the protests. Walker said that National Guard personnel held their positions and did not advance on the protesters. He also denied that the controversial low overflights of helicopters on Monday night were directed by the Pentagon leadership, as the New York Times reported Saturday. Walker said the incident is under investigation. Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy told CNN in a separate exclusive interview that the possibility of sending out of state National Guard troops home is under serious consideration due to the peaceful nature of the ongoing protests. “Well, we're looking very hard at that. I think that if we look at the trend that we're on right now we're in very good shape and we're looking at that option very closely,” McCarthy said, adding that the crowds today were large “but very peaceful.” In New York City, night has fallen and it's now past the 8 p.m. curfew, but crowds are still marching through the city. It's been a relatively quiet night, with smaller crowds than earlier in the week, said CNN Correspondent Bill Weir. One group is marching down Manhattan toward the Manhattan Bridge, which would cross into Brooklyn. Though crowds are smaller, they're also more festive and peaceful, said Weir. "People (have been) handing out free water and sign-making materials to protesters. And as we saw most of the day, the crowds were really diverse, families were out marching ... There was a musical second line New Orleans-style procession that went all around the city, led by Jon Batiste, the band leader from Stephen Colbert's "Late Show." And people singing along to Whitney Houston songs and "When the Saints Go Marching In," Weir said. "It was a very different attitude emotionally than we've seen all week." Police have also taken a more hands-off approach, Weir said. It seems like "the tactic  tonight is to just let the crowd move as they want to and let it dissipate on their own," rather than arrest and detain people for being out past curfew as seen earlier in the week. As evening approaches in Los Angeles, there are multiple protests taking place across the city. In downtown Los Angeles, hundreds, if not thousands, of people are gathered on the steps of City Hall, by the courthouse. Protesters have been gathering there nearly every day this week -- and they say they will continue to until they see the change they demand. The atmosphere is peaceful and spirited, with protesters chanting slogans like "Defund the Police" and gathering to listen to speakers. It's a diverse crowd, with people from all ethnicities and backgrounds, said CNN reporter Lucy Kafanov. "The atmosphere here is passionate," she said. "There's also a sense of community feeling here. There's a lot of folks handing out masks and water and snacks, making sure that the demonstrators are well fed, well watered, have everything that they need." There aren't many police or law enforcement in the area, she added -- there are some officers on the steps of City Hall, but no National Guard members or police in riot gear. It's "another visible effort by the city to deescalate the tensions and prevent the scenes that we saw last weekend that involved a lot of difficult and heavy clashes," Kafanov said. "This is a very different atmosphere." Elsewhere in Los Angeles, in the Fairfax district, protesters are peacefully demonstrating -- there's even a dance-off between participants. Here, too, police are nowhere to be seen. Tens of thousands of people are estimated to have participated in protests across Washington, DC, on Saturday. The protests were peaceful all day, with no clashes reported with police. No arrests were made today, said a Metropolitan DC Police spokeswoman. The police department estimated there were at least 6,000 protesters at several locations at noon -- which was before any major events began. Several different protests scattered across the city later drew major crowds.  Earlier in the day, a large group gathered at the Lincoln Memorial. Later, several blocks full of people marched from Capitol Hill past the National Museum of African American History, before heading towards the White House and then to other locations.  At the same time, protests filled blocks going north from Lafayette Park, which has been the center of activity. As evening fell, crowds began to dwindle a little, but protesters still filled several blocks north of the park, which is close to the White House. What it looks like in DC now: People are painting the street with protest slogans such as "Defund the police," said CNN Correspondent Alex Marquadt, reporting from the scene. "You can see this huge "Black Lives Matter" banner hanging from the fence that was installed earlier this week around the northern edge of Lafayette park. This fence now stretches all the way around, most of the way around the White House," said Marquadt. He added that previously, often law enforcement would be on the other side of the fence during protests -- but that's not the case tonight, in a reflection of how peaceful recent protests have been. The Sacramento Police Department has suspended the use of the carotid control hold, according to a tweet from the agency. The hold is no longer authorized for use within the department and all trainings on the hold have been discontinued, the department said in a series of tweets Saturday. The department is also revising it's use of force policy to reflect the changes, another tweet said. The White House wanted to have 10,000 active duty troops on the streets of Washington and other cities earlier this week to quell protesters, but Secretary of Defense Mark Esper and Chairman of the Joint of Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley pushed back at the idea, according to a senior defense official.  Epser did move approximately 1,600 active duty troops to the Washington region to respond if needed, but the 5,000 National Guard troops never needed assistance. Those active troops began to leave Thursday night. A second defense official said Milley strongly felt the threshold informally described as dire circumstances for calling in active duty troops could not be met, opening the door to whether such a potential presidential order would be legal. CNN has reached out to the White House for comment. CBS first reported that the White House wanted 10,000 troops. Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler has directed the police chief to no longer use gas to disperse crowds "unless there is a serious and immediate threat to life safety, and there is no other viable alternative for dispersal," he said in a series of tweets Saturday. Simone Lewis, a demonstrator in Washington, explained why protesters were in front of the White House Saturday. This is the White House, this is where we can make noise and show that yes, we actually do want change … If it takes 10 years, I will be out here marching everyday for 10 years,” Lewis said. Lewis added that change starts with voting. “Please go outside, vote in your various states. Please vote, convince your friends to register to vote and all that. Please vote, it matters,” she said. Doctors from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director on down have cautioned demonstrators that crowds provide a perfect opportunity for the coronavirus to spread. But, after weeks of holing up at home under pandemic lockdown, Jazondre Gibbs was glad to finally have something she could do. She was up early Saturday morning, packing her car and driving with her mom into the center of Washington, DC, so they could set up a table loaded with bags of snacks, water, hand sanitizer and other supplies to hand out to crowds demonstrating after the death of George Floyd. The pandemic has made us feel kind of helpless,” said Gibbs, a 23-year-old behavioral science consultant. “We can’t really control how many tests there are and how many masks there are – those types of things,” Gibbs told CNN. “But I can control the time that I spend to put these bags together and I can control how much time I want to spend doing this. Those are things I can be in control of.” Sarah Foster also felt the demonstrations were a chance to take action after weeks of passive inaction. The 36-year-old engineer had walked from her home to join the demonstration. “So this is finally something we can do, and something important that we can be part of, that we can help solve,” Foster told CNN. “Obviously, people are a little bit closer together than is the recommended six-foot distance, but I think what we are doing is so important. Everyone’s gotten used to finding a way to stay separated.” Monica Schoch-Spana, a senior scholar of medical anthropology at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, sees the issue of George Floyd’s killing as a crisis pressing enough to bring people out despite their fears about the coronavirus. “People have been sequestered for a long period of time. And, quite frankly, the majority of people have stuck in there with regard to physical distancing. They have now found a reason to break with that established pattern that has gone on for weeks and weeks and weeks,” Schoch-Spana told CNN. Numerous people gathered on Berlin's Alexanderplatz for a "silent" demonstration against racism and police violence. Here's what the scene looked like: George Floyd’s brother, Philonise Floyd, will testify before Congress Wednesday during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on policing practices and law enforcement accountability, a source familiar with the situation tells CNN. The source said it had not yet been determined whether Floyd would testify in person or virtually. House Judiciary Committee Democrats invited Floyd to speak, this person said.  CNN has reached out to the Committee for details.  ABC News first reported that Floyd would be appearing before Congress.  Floyd said last week he spoke with both President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden, saying his talk with Trump was "brief" while Biden was talking to him "constantly." "He didn't give me an opportunity to even speak," Floyd said of his conversation with President Trump.  On Saturday, Brittany Brees, the wife of New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees, posted a statement on Instagram addressing the comments made by her husband about taking a knee during the national anthem. She commented on the how the couple came to understand the true meaning behind the protests and their lack of knowledge on the issues in the black community. The band director in Atlanta whose band played on top of the parking garage across from the CNN Center said "music charms the soul, music charms the savage beast." Music is just the universal language of the world," the director said. Rashaad Horne, who was interviewed with the director, said music changed the atmosphere Saturday. "As you can see, as soon we started playing the crowd just immediately came this way. It was a whole thing ... we knew that music would bring togetherness," Horne said. CNN photographer Chris James took photos during the protests in New York, showing the diversity of the demonstrations calling for police reform. Naolni Mfume, a young protester in DC, said there still needs to be momentum after the big march Saturday. After a big march like this, I feel like we still need to march, we still need to care even though we already showed our support, we need to keep on pushing until actual change is done,” Naolni said. She said she felt she needed to be out demonstrating. “I felt the need to come out because my life matters," she said. "Police are walking free, and they’re doing bad things. ... Like stepping on somebody’s neck and then they get to walk free and get paid leave. That’s not OK, we need changes.” Lawmakers, family and community leaders mourned George Floyd on Saturday in Raeford, North Carolina, during a musical celebration of life. The Floyd family dressed in white and clapped or raised their hands through most of the service, which was filled with gospel music and cries for justice.  "We welcome George back home one more time," said US Rep. Richard Hudson.  Floyd was born in the Fayetteville, North Carolina, about 20 miles from Raeford. Hudson said, as a white man, it is "unacceptable" he'll never have to worry when his son "leaves the house, that some rogue cop's going to kill him," while African-American and Hispanic families do worry everyday.  "If I deny all the wrong that law enforcement is doing today, I am denying the color of my skin," said Hoke County Sheriff Hubert Peterkin. The sheriff said officers everywhere need to say six words: "We are part of the problem." Jeremy Collins, a representative of North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, presented the Floyd family with a flag that flew over the state capitol building on Wednesday. "Some death ain't about dying, some death is about waking all of us up," Collins said.   Denver Broncos players were filmed marching with protesters Saturday, the team tweeted. Broncos outside linebacker Von Miller spoke during the protests. "It's up to us to keep this going," Miller said in reference to athletes staying involved on social issues. Broncos Safety Justin Simmons also spoke to a crowd, saying “I can’t say what this means as an African-American man to see so many people of different colors, different races coming together in solidarity." A live band played on top of a parking garage in downtown Atlanta outside the CNN Center in Atlanta as people gathered to protest the death of George Floyd. The scene included protesters congregating as band leaders played at the top of the garage. Pictures of black boys with the words "I just wanna live" were hung on the light poles. At multiple German Bundesliga soccer matches on Saturday, players demonstrated their solidarity with with the global "Black Lives Matter" movement.   Bayern Munich, the league's top team, wore shirts during warmups that said "Rot Gegen Rassismus (translation: Reds Against Racism) #BLACKLIVESMATTER" and some wore "Black Lives Matter" armbands in the match.   Later at the match between Borussia Dortmund and Hertha Berlin, both teams knelt prior to kickoff for a moment of silence. Dortmund players wore shirts during warmups that said "NO JUSTICE NO PEACE" and other messages against racism. In another match, Mainz player Pierre Kunde knelt after scoring a goal in his team's 2-0 win over Eintracht Frankfurt. The west sidewalk of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco opened Saturday for pedestrians during the Black Lives Matter protest. One day after Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser requested President Donald Trump remove additional law enforcement and out-of-city National Guard, Bowser joined thousands of protesters on the streets of the nation's capital on Saturday. “We should all be watching what’s happening in Washington DC because we don’t want the federal government to do this to any other Americans,” Bowser remarked while she walked through downtown DC with protesters. Bowser said the additional units are "inflaming" and "adding to the grievances" of people protesting the death of George Floyd. On Friday, Bowser commissioned “BLACK LIVES MATTER” to be written in large yellow paint on two blocks of 16th Street, a central axis that leads southward straight to the White House. Additionally, Bowser renamed the square in front of Lafayette Park, steps from the White House, “Black Lives Matter Plaza.” Washington DC’s Metropolitan Police Department did not make any arrests Friday night in relation to the protests, a spokeswoman for Bowser told CNN. The looting that occurred across New York City, prompting a curfew to be put in place, was an "intelligence failure" on behalf of the New York Police Department, said John Miller, deputy commissioner of intelligence and counter-terrorism, during a briefing. If a couple of hundred people knew to be in a certain place at a certain time for criminal activity and we didn’t detect that, that’s on me," Miller said. Officials have gone back through social media accounts they monitor for illegal activity and haven’t such a post or calls for looting, according to Miller. “So there’s a question in intelligence gathering, if you will, as to was that done through word of mouth? Is there a social media piece that we missed? Was it done on direct messages between individuals that became a game of telephone and expanded, but that only goes for the first night in Soho. When it started we responded and kept responding and responding,” Miller said. Miller went on to say that looting was a feature of this protesting they weren’t anticipating and normally isn’t seen during these kinds of movements.  “We believe it was an opportunist action by regular criminal groups who decided to exploit this. And we hear that increasingly from the groups that are marching that they have nothing to do with that and are trying to disassociate themselves,” Miller said.   Washington's new BLACK LIVES MATTER street mural is so huge, you can see it from space. New satellite images from Planet Labs clearly show the bright yellow message amid the gray Lego-looking buildings on the street leading to the White House, its grandeur minimized by the distance. At least 5,000 protesters have now stopped marching and are peacefully listening to speakers in the heart of the city’s historic Cabrini Green housing project.  Over the past 10 years most of the high-rise apartments here have been bulldozed and the neighborhood has been largely gentrified, but several low-rise apartment buildings remain. Phoenix police Chief Jeri Williams joined a group marching in the city Friday evening and told protesters that the department is listening to their demands, according to CNN affiliate KNXV. Williams also posted to her Twitter account that she was invited to walk with protesters as part of ongoing meetings "to find viable solutions to their genuine concerns." "I'm confident our community can come together and be stronger," Williams tweeted. There is no curfew Saturday night in Washington, DC, according to a spokesperson for Mayor Muriel Bowser The last night there was a curfew in the District was Wednesday evening. A curfew was put into effect beginning Monday evening after there were some confrontations and looting last weekend.   Olivia Butler, a demonstrator in Washington, DC, said she is thankful for the multitudes of people across the country coming together to speak out against racial injustice, but hopes that the nation is really ready for change. "I think it is great they're out here now but I am a little skeptical about if it is authentic," she told CNN during a march on Saturday. "Once things do change, it impacts all groups so it is going to be interesting to see what happens." Solving systematic issues of racism will take more than just protests, Butler added. "It is something that has to be solved through legislation, through new precedents being set in the legal system, and social change so people's mindsets change so we don't keep fostering the sense of... underlying racial bias in the country. It cannot be solved with a couple marches," she said. ##At The Protests## Administrators from Wichita State University and WSU Tech in Kansas cancelled Ivanka Trump’s virtual graduation speech following backlash over President Trump’s response to George Floyd’s death. The school announced she would be the commencement speaker last Thursday and abruptly cancelled it the same day after criticism, according to a statement from the WSU Tech President. “The invitation was extended in February and Ms. Trump offered to record a congratulatory message to graduates to be played during our event. In light of the social justice issues brought forth by George Floyd’s death, I understand and take responsibility that the timing of the announcement was insensitive,” Dr. Sheree Utash, president of WSU Tech said. “For this, I’m sorry that was never the intent, and I want you to know I have heard you and we are responding.” Ivanka Trump tweeted the nearly 10 minute prerecorded address anyway and spoke out about “cancel culture.” “Our nation’s campuses should be bastions of free speech. Cancel culture and viewpoint discrimination are antithetical to academia. Listening to one another is important now more than ever!," she wrote on Twitter. In the video: Trump focused on coronavirus and said that her “heart goes out” to the graduates on this day, adding “changes and hardships do not predict failure in fact they can be the greatest impetus for success… You are a wartime graduate.” Trump never mentioned George Floyd or the hundreds of thousands of people who are peacefully protesting across the country. Four NYPD commanding officers in Brooklyn have been reassigned due to their handling of protesters during the first days of the George Floyd protests in New York City, a senior NYPD official confirmed to CNN.  The order came down at 12:01 a.m. ET Saturday morning, the official said. The curfew in Miami-Dade County has been moved to 9 p.m. ET effective Saturday until further notice, a statement from Mayor Carlos Gimenez's office said. The curfew had been midnight to 6 a.m. earlier in the week but was changed to 10 p.m. Friday night due to unrest in parts of the county, according to the mayor's office. Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan urged people who participated in demonstrations throughout the city over the past week to get tested for Covid-19, according to a statement released by the mayor’s office on Saturday.  “Over the last week, residents across Seattle have been gathering to build community and share their anger and frustration about the killing of George Floyd and injustices against black Americans, here in Seattle and across the country. While I believe everyone should exercise their right and speak out, we must also remember we’re in the middle of a pandemic,” Durkan said in the statement.  Durkan announced a new citywide testing program for Covid-19 that expands testing criteria to include people who participated in demonstrations. Currently, testing is recommended for individuals experiencing any symptoms of coronavirus and those who have been exposed to someone with Covid-19 within the past 14 days.  “I recognize that many have put themselves at risk of exposure to make their voices heard, and this expanded criteria will ensure they can get tested at city test sites,” Durkan said.     Jon Batiste — a musician and bandleader of "Stay Human," the house band for Stephen Colbert's late night talk show — said protests across the country show how this generation has the power to make change. "We are the ones who are responding to the 401 years of generational trauma and oppression that our ancestors bore. We're standing on their shoulders," he told CNN while he walked with a large crowd. "We have the power right now. We are the ones." Batiste said "everyone deserves respect" but "everyone doesn't get a chance." "I don't believe in trying to change people who don't want to change, but I believe everyone has that love in them. All we have to do is put it on display," he said. "Everyone deserves a chance to live a life pursuing liberty and happiness," Batiste added. Watch the interview: ##At The Protests## As protests continue around the US, here's a look at where curfews stand in major cities around the country:   Georgia - Atlanta: A mandatory curfew was lifted Saturday by Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms after more than a week of a 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew.  New York - Buffalo: Mayor Brown said the plan is for the curfew to remain in place until 5 a.m. Monday but the city will monitor and adjust if needed. New York - New York: An 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew remains in place until Sunday.  Illinois - Chicago: A curfew remains in place between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. Mayor Lori Lightfoot issued the curfew on May 30. Texas - Dallas: The curfew for downtown Dallas was lifted effective Saturday, according to the city hall website. A curfew had been in place since the state and city declared a state of disaster on May 31. Colorado - Denver: The city wide curfew expired at 5 a.m. Friday and was not extended, a tweet from Mayor Michael Hancock said.  California - Los Angeles: A curfew for the city was lifted by Mayor Eric Garcetti effective Thursday. Florida - Miami: A curfew was put in place for Miami-Dade County by Mayor Carlos Gimenez earlier in the week and was pushed earlier to 8 p.m. from 10 p.m. due to unrest in Miami Beach Friday. Minnesota - Minneapolis: Curfew was lifted by Gov. Tim Walz effective Friday after more than a week of protests. Minnesota - St. Paul: Curfew was lifted effective Friday after more than a week of protests and curfews. Pennsylvania - Philadelphia: The curfew was extended into Sunday morning. Effective Friday, people must be off the streets and retail businesses must close from 8 p.m. until 6 a.m. Washington DC: Curfew was lifted Thursday by Mayor Muriel Bowser. The crowd of protesters outside of the Dirksen Senate office building in Washington, DC, is growing quickly. Organizers from Freedom Fighters DC told CNN that their plan is to march down the National Mall to the front of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture where they expect a couple of speeches One demonstrator, Philomena Wankenge, who is a Freedom Fighters DC board member, said she was willing to die for this movement on behalf of her family's future. "I don't care if I lose my life if that means my nieces and my nephews won't have to deal with someone invalidating them because of the color of their skin," Wankenge said. "It sounds extreme and it might sound dramatic to people but as a black person every day that I wake up I could die. Especially as a black woman dealing with sexism and dealing with racism I'm combating double the trouble," she added. After the stop at the African American Museum, the group will proceed to the Lincoln Memorial. The group will end the day at Freedom Plaza, which is across the street from the DC mayor’s office.  ##At The Protests## WATCH: Thousands of people gathered to pay homage to George Floyd and protest against racism and police brutality in Paris on Saturday.  Protesters rallied with slogans "No justice no peace,“ “I can’t breathe" and “Black Lives Matter” and chanted “being born black is not a crime” as they marched through Place de la Concorde and towards the US embassy.  The rallies had been banned by the police due to health measures in the context of Covid-19, and the area was barricaded Saturday morning to prevent public access to the US embassy. As hundreds gathered in Concorde, several thousand peaceful demonstrators joined at Champs de Mars in front of the Eiffel Tower. Despite the protest ban, people gathered in other French cities such as Lille, Marseille and Nice on Saturday for the same cause. French TV stations showed police firing tear gas and clashing with protesters in Lille. Some context: On Tuesday, a demonstration banned by the police prefect brought together at least 20,000 people in Paris at the call of a committee supporting the family of Adama Traoré, a young black man who died in 2016 under Paris police custody. Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz tweeted Saturday that she would decline to prosecute protest arrests based on curfew and social distancing violations.  “We are proud to be a united front on this issue. Queens DA Katz is committed to reforms in the name of #SocialJustice and has declined to prosecute based on curfew and social distancing violations,” Katz said, while quoting a tweet from Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance announcing his decision not to prosecute yesterday. A spokesperson for Katz told CNN Saturday that she has declined to prosecute curfew-breakers "from the start” and that her decision to not prosecute is not a recent one.  Ryan Lavis, director of communications for the Staten Island District Attorney’s Office told CNN Saturday that their office "has not received any protest or curfew related arrests to date." CNN has also reached out to the Brooklyn and Bronx district attorneys for comment. Read Katz's tweet: The curfew in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, has been extended through Sunday morning, according to an executive order from the mayor. The new curfew hours took effect Friday from 8 p.m. ET until 6 a.m. ET, the executive order said. In addition to people not being out on the street, the order also tells retail businesses to close at 8 p.m. and not reopen until 6 a.m. According to the order, "only people with essential duties will be permitted outdoors." Police are estimating that there are about 6,000 protesters in Washington, DC, according to the DC Police Traffic, a division of the Metropolitan Police Department. At 12 p.m. ET, there were approximately 3,000 people at the Lincoln Memorial and another 3,000 at 16th and I St, NW, near the White House, DC Police Traffic said. CNN staff on the ground in DC note there are protesters gathering at other locations as well, including Capitol Hill. Read the tweet from DC Police Traffic: When asked how officers should have responded to the 75-year-old protester in Buffalo, Erie County District Attorney John Flynn said "you don't crack a skull on the concrete."   Flynn was asked what police officers should have done if the man was not listening to officers, to which he responded, "what you do is that you grab him" and "turn him around" and arrest him if he's doing something illegal.  "You don't take a baton and shove, along with the officer next to him," and knock him down and "crack his head," Flynn said.  Flynn said he highly doubts "shoving a 75-year-old man" is part of any training. But "if what you've been trained to do is unlawful, that's not an excuse" and police should "reevaluate their training."   Atlanta is not enforcing a curfew on Saturday, the first time in a week, according to the office of Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms.  Officials said they will monitor the situation into Sunday morning. The curfew in the city yesterday was 8 p.m. ET. The city is also offering free Covid-19 testing for protesters and community on Saturday, according to a tweet. Tests will be administered at Chosewood Arts Complex from 10 a.m. ET to 2 p.m. ET. Read the announcement: The Erie County District Attorney has announced that 39-year-old Aaron Torgalski and 32-year-old Robert McCabe were the Buffalo police officers who were arraigned Saturday morning, each on one count of assault in the second degree. Prosecutors claim that at approximately 8 p.m. on June 4, Torgalski and McCabe allegedly pushed 75-year-old protester Martin Gugino outside City Hall, causing him to fall and hit his head on the sidewalk. “The 75-year-old male victim was taken to ECMC to be treated for a head injury, loss of consciousness, and bleeding from the right ear. He remains hospitalized in critical condition,” the Erie County District Attorney said in a news release. If convicted on the charge, the maximum possible sentence is seven years in prison, the district attorney said. Erie County District Attorney John Flynn says he was prepared to charge both Buffalo New York Police officers yesterday, but he was concerned after 57 officers resigned from the emergency unit.  "I could have done this yesterday," Flynn said at a news conference following the arraignment on Saturday.  "I found out that the entire emergency response team of the Buffalo Police Department had quit and they weren't going to come out last night to protect the city of Buffalo." Flynn said he "didn't want to pour gasoline on the fire." He said he was "concerned about the safety of the city" and "about the safety of the officers last night." Both officer pleaded not guilty to one count of assault in the second degree and have been released without bail.  WATCH: New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo outlined a legislative agenda centered around criminal justice reform. Cuomo said at his daily news briefing on Saturday that "New York is going to lead the way" in change and hopes to set an example for the rest of the country. He said he will work with the state legislature to pass items on the "Say Their Name" reform agenda when it convenes next week. Here are the four main points: Allow for transparency of prior disciplinary records of law enforcement officers Ban chokeholds by law enforcement officers Prohibiting false race-based 911 reports and making them a crime Designating the attorney general as an independent prosecutor for matters relating to the deaths of unarmed civilians caused by law enforcement "New York, we're about doing. We're about action. We're about results," Cuomo said. WATCH GOV. CUOMO: There are now more than 43,300 National Guard members responding to protests around the US following George Floyd's death. The National Guard tweeted updated figures on Saturday, saying 1,800 additional members are now engaged. “Today, more than 43,300 National Guard members in 34 states and D.C. are assisting law enforcement authorities with ongoing civil unrest, while more than 37,000 Guard Soldiers and Airmen continue to support the Covid-19 response,” the tweet said. Read the tweet: Two Buffalo, New York, police officers were arraigned via video conference Saturday morning before Judge Craig Hannah. Both pleaded not guilty to one count of assault in the second degree and have been released without bail.  Both officers appeared on the videoconference with the same attorney. They will appear for another court appearance on July 20 at 9:30 a.m. Some background: Video of a peaceful protest on Thursday in Buffalo shows a row of officers walking toward an elderly man. Two officers appear to push him. The officers were suspended. WATCH: Approximately 20,000 people attended racial justice protests in Sydney, Australia, in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement on Saturday, New South Wales (NSW) police said in a statement.  Three people were arrested but overall, the protests “remained peaceful,” police said. NSW police and officials had sought to ban today's demonstrations, citing the social distancing rules in place due to the coronavirus pandemic. Some context: On Friday night, a Supreme Court injunction blocked the protests that were planned, but by Saturday morning, however, the New South Wales Court of Appeals had overturned that ruling. “There were some concerns raised by officers on the ground around physical distancing, and while some people were spoken to, no formal police action was required,” Assistant Commissioner Mick Willing said. Charles Ramsey, former Philadelphia police commissioner, believes that no one, including police officers, should judge "anyone by the color of their skin." Ramsey shared this insight Saturday morning during a CNN Sesame Street town hall aimed at discussing racism with families and children. "People are out there demonstrating right now because there are a few police officers that don't always act the way we'd like them to act," Ramsey said. "Most officers do a good job every single day and will always be there to help you. But we have to make sure that regardless of the circumstances, police officers always do their job the right way and no one, especially police officers, but no one, should ever treat anyone differently based on the color of their skin." Ramsey added: "Those young people, be proud of who you are. Your skin color is absolutely beautiful. Just like all the other skin colors we have in this world." Religion professor Jennifer Harvey, of Drake University, said white Americans need to get "all in" on fighting against racial injustice and identify their white privilege. "One of the most important things that we need to acknowledge right now is that the most dangerous kind of white privilege is to think we can sit this justice struggle out," Harvey said at a CNN town hall aimed at discussing racism with families and children today. "This won't be over in two weeks and especially as African-American communities are leading the struggle for racial justice right now, white Americans need to get all in," Harvey added. Harvey said "white communities are not negatively impacted by racism and sometimes we get unjust benefits and easier access to things because we're white, not because we deserve it." HEAR PROFESSOR HARVEY: Psychologist Beverly Tatum believes there's a way to start discussions on racism early in a child's life without risking their innocence. Tatum said many children may have already been exposed to the foundations of racism on the playground, she said during the CNN Sesame Street town hall Saturday morning. "We, as parents, are going to take care of them and ensure their safety. But it is also the case that even very young children might have some experiences with name calling or someone saying you can't play. They might have learned something about racism, even if they're only 3 or 4-years-old. And so, talking about what's fair and unfair and how you stand up for yourself and other people is something that even young children can learn about, because even young children understand what it means to be fair and what it means to be unfair towards someone," Tatum said. Jeanette Betancourt, the senior vice president for US Social Impact at Sesame Workshop, said hard conversations about racism need to start early with children in order to build a foundation. "We know young children, even in infancy start to recognize the different between race and identity," Betancourt said at a CNN Sesame Street town hall Saturday morning. "This is an opportunity to talk about those similarities and differences in your everyday moments, to take advantage of the diversity that surrounds you, but to have these conversations early on in a way that sets a foundation, but it lasts for a lifetime of awareness." "Children see, and learn from what they see, so that our actions are more important than our words," she added. Starting that conversation: Explaining racism to your kids can be a topic that is difficult to approach for many parents. Dr. Nia Heard-Garris, the minority health, equity and inclusion chair at the American Academy of Pediatrics, suggested starting with history and giving context. "You want to start with people were brought to the United States as workers, as slaves, that were unpaid and that was not fair. And they were treated really poorly and those people are black people, people that have come from countries in Africa," Heard-Garris said. She said parents can then build on this conversation and explain that "this is something that's been going on for years and years, centuries, and that's why we're seeing what we're seeing now." WATCH: Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said one of the most important ways to fight racism in America is to "keep loving each other." "Make sure when your friends sometimes do things they shouldn't do that you say to them that's not right and you shouldn't do that. And say it with love and just lead by example," Bottoms said during a CNN Sesame Street town hall this morning aimed at starting the conversation about racism with children and families. When asked why black people are treated so badly, Bottoms said "I don't know if we will ever have the answer to that." "Dr. Martin Luther king had a dream for his four children that they would be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin, we have to continue to dream and hope and work on that this country will live up to that," she said. "Some people just don't know any better. Some people say that hurt people hurt people and I think that's what happens when you see black and brown people being treated unfairly," she added. Bottoms said that sometimes when people are being mean and hateful, they are sometimes hurting inside and don't know how to express it. "You can't treat people the way they treat you. You have to treat people the way you want to be treated," Bottoms said. WATCH MAYOR BOTTOMS: Hoke County Sheriff Hubert Peterkin, an 18-year veteran of the police force, told CNN how difficult the current situation in the US is for black men in law enforcement saying in part, “we’re [being] questioned from the black community: How can you be a part of all this mess?” George Floyd’s family reached out to Peterkin asking for help in planning the upcoming funeral services for Floyd, an experience in which Peterkin says he feels like he’s been in the [Floyd] family for a long time and describes as an honor. “I didn't know how Bridget, the sister, was going to receive me as a law enforcement person. There are people who are mad with law enforcement, who've never had an incident. Or they just don't like what's going on and they should not like what's going on. But when I walked in front of this woman, and that family, and they embraced me like they did, and hugged me and said thank you. It was tears. I can't express the feeling. I left there that day saying, wow, you know, that means there's some hope," Peterkin said. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms shared some words of wisdom for parents on how they can talk to their young children about racism during CNN's Sesame Street town hall this morning. Bottoms said to tell children that they "can't treat people the way they treat you, you have to treat people the way you want to be treated." "That's what my mother always told me. So I try to encourage my children to recognize that when someone is being mean and when they're being hateful on that, sometimes they're hurting inside and they don't have any other way to express it. Now, I know that's easier said than done and I have to remind myself of that a lot because sometimes I get impatient too but I keep reminding myself of that, and sometimes I do something as simple as say a prayer for them," Bottoms said. Thousands of peaceful protesters gathered at London’s Parliament Square on Saturday as part of a Black Lives Matter demonstration in solidarity with protests taking place across the United States. The protest, which has so far proven to be entirely peaceful, was organized following unrest in the US over the killing of George Floyd by police officers in Minneapolis.   Today, United Kingdom protesters joined together to chant Floyd’s name and “black lives matter." At one point, everyone took a knee in unison.   “I feel that what happened in the US was just a spark, that sparked everywhere…I do think George Floyd’s death sparked it across the world and I think it’s amazing,” one protester told CNN on Saturday.  “It’s a world-wide issue, no matter where you are. It’s an issue everywhere, we all need to rise up,” another protester added.  Coronavirus concerns: The gathering has garnered a significant turnout, despite the government urging citizens not to demonstrate over fears that the protest could lead to the further spread of coronavirus.  “I completely understand people’s desire to express their views and to have that right to protest, but the fact of the matter is, we are in a health pandemic across the United Kingdom,” UK Home Secretary Priti Patel said Saturday during an interview with Sky News.  “I would say to those that want to protest, please don’t,” she added.   While little social distancing has been observed at the demonstration, people have been seen handing out free masks and gloves to protect protesters from spreading the virus.  According to the UK Metropolitan Police, roads into Parliament Square have been closed “to protect both protesters and vehicles” entering the area. While there is a substantial police presence, officers are not wearing protective riot equipment.  The Buffalo Police Advisory Board in New York released a statement Friday calling for “urgent system-wide policing policy reforms" in response to ongoing police violence.  The board is recommending the creation of an independent, investigatory body, and the codification of five use-of-force policy amendments. The group also is calling for the adoption of a law enforcement assisted diversion program and the use of “stop tickets” to provide residents with basic information about stops and the officer.  Here are some of the use-of-force policy amendments they suggested: Requiring de-escalation prior to use of force Requiring a warning before shooting Requiring another present officer to intervene Mandating a comprehensive report of other police officers’ actions or arrests   Some background: The Police Advisory Board is an independent advisory committee created by the Buffalo Common Council to focus on policing and community-police relations in Buffalo.  This comes after an elderly white man peacefully protesting was seen on video being pushed to the ground and seriously injured by Buffalo Police on Thursday. After having been pushed to the ground, police officers kept walking after the man was lying on the ground and bleeding. A Philadelphia police inspector facing charges for allegedly striking a student protester on the head with a metal baton is no longer on patrol duty, according to public media station WHYY.  In a phone call Friday, Philadelphia Police Staff Inspector Joseph Bologna told the station: "Right now, I’m handling operations from the office.” On Friday District Attorney Larry Krasner announced charges against Bologna. Prosecutors say Bologna was captured on cell phone video appearing to strike a Temple University student in the back of his head while he was participating in a mass demonstration against racism and injustice in the area of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.  The unidentified student suffered a large head wound that required about 10 staples and 10 sutures, the release from Krasner's office states. Following the announcement of charges, John McNesby, the President of Philadelphia Lodge #5 Fraternal Order of Police issued a statement supporting Bologna saying: "The FOP is disgusted to learn of the arrest of one of its most decorated and respected police leaders. Inspector Bologna's dedication to our city for over 30 years is unmatched. He was engaged in a volatile and chaotic situation with only milliseconds to make a decision. "The issuance of an arrest warrant for Bologna comes on the same day police issued a new catch and release policy for those who assault police officers. Why are officers not afforded those same basic rights?" the statement read.  Roughly 20 adults were arrested and one juvenile was detained during demonstrations and protests that started out peaceful in downtown Portland, Oregon, on Friday, according to the Portland Police Department.   Here's what happened: Police say that around 6 p.m. PT, several thousand “peaceful demonstrators” marched from Revolution Hall, over the Hawthorne Bridge, to Waterfront Park where they “peacefully rallied for several hours,” according to a statement released this morning.   As night descended on what Portland police are calling the eighth day of protests, officers say demonstrators started hurling bricks, glass bottles, fireworks, some frozen water bottles, sharp blades, ball bearings, mortars, batteries and other projectiles at police. Portland Police and Multnomah County Sheriff's Office deputies started clearing the area to disperse the crowd at around 11 p.m. PT when a civil disturbance and an unlawful assembly were declared. "Tonight's events revealed an escalation in focus, violence, and weaponry directed at public safety officials. Fortunately, demonstrators, media, and public safety officers have not experienced serious physical injuries in the past week, despite the dangerous life safety risks we have witnessed,” Chief Jami Resch said.  It's been an extraordinary week in America and around the world, as anger, pain and heartbreak have erupted over the killing of yet another black man at the hands of police. The protests, unrest, outrage and fear have been impossible to ignore, and they come amid a pandemic that had already turned life upside down for many. If you're feeling hopeless, you're not alone. CNN asked some experts for ways to get through it. 1. Acknowledge your feelings and put a label on them: "I think the most important thing is to acknowledge and sit with the idea that something is making us uncomfortable," said Alfiee Breland-Noble, psychologist and founder of mental health nonprofit, the AAKOMA Project. 2. Connect with others: "It's really crucial that we don't use this time to alienate ourselves," said Andrea Bonior, licensed clinical psychologist and author of "Detox Your Thoughts," addressing the isolating effects that the coronavirus has had on many people. "We're already coming from a baseline of loneliness where we're all feeling a little disconnected. The research is very clear that increased social support has all kinds of positive benefits for mental health and for our emotional well-being," she added. 3. Get involved: "People feel hopeless because they don't know what to do, and they feel like the little thing they're doing is not enough," Breland-Noble said. She notes that "whatever that little thing is that you're doing, that's all you can do for now." 4. Be kind to yourself: It's important to practice self-care to help you get centered. For some people that may be a walk in nature, for others meditation or yoga. "Try to work within your bandwidth, using things that are accessible," Breland-Noble said. "If you're going to meditate, and it's like eight people in a two-bedroom home, maybe you have to literally go into the bathroom and sit there for five minutes with your headphones on," she said. 5. Acknowledge the good: "Oftentimes in the darkest of times, we're only seeing the anger, we're only seeing the chaos," Bonior said. "We're tuning out the smaller aspects of kindness, the smaller aspects of people helping each other." She pointed out some of the kinder acts of love we're seeing at the protests, like people standing up and protecting others or volunteers handing out water to protesters. Read more here. The Mayor of Mexico City, Claudia Sheinbaum says she does not tolerate members of her police force committing acts of brutality on demonstrators. "We don't and won't tolerate police abuse," she said in a video statement posted to her official Twitter account on Friday. Sheinbaum was reacting to reports of police violence committed against a female teenage protester in front of the US embassy in Mexico City on Friday.  Demonstrations have flared up in Mexico in recent days in solidarity with protests in the United States and further afield following the murder of George Floyd, who was killed in police custody in Minneapolis last month. Protesters, many with their faces covered, marched along with one of central Mexico City's main avenues, setting fire to cars and smashing up the fronts of a number of businesses. The demonstration culminated in a small group of young protesters with anarchist banners hurling Molotov cocktails at the US embassy, throwing stones and burning objects over the metal barricades surrounding the embassy. Sheinbaum said, "although they committed lawless acts that should be punished by law, my orders were clear and precise that we must avoid any provocation. Nevertheless, they (the police) did not obey these orders fully." "There was police brutality committed against at least one teenage girl, something that is unacceptable to my government," Sheinbaum added.  The mayor said she had ordered an investigation by the attorney general’s office and Mexico’s Commission for Human Rights "to identify and punish those responsible regardless of their ranks," according to her statement. “I have been in contact with the family of the attack victim to give them all the support they need,“ Sheinbaum added.  Protesters have gathered in major cities across Australia demanding justice over minority deaths in police custody in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. About 10,000 people gathered in central Sydney Saturday after a court overturned a previous injunction that ruled any protest there illegal because of social distancing restrictions. Similar demonstrations went ahead in Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide, with protesters waving banners and chanting "black lives matter." The rallies were organized by indigenous rights groups -- among others -- under the banner "Stop Black Deaths in Custody." Jeremy, 27, who didn't reveal his surname, attended the march in Sydney. "To know that I stand on the shoulders of black, queer people before me who have enabled me to live the life I lead, I had to ask myself if I was going to be the ancestor that people after me needed me to be," he told CNN. "Change needs to happen ... I want to see it at its grass-roots level, see it in the education system, with people in power. What I want to see is that we haven't come this far for everything that's come before us to mean nothing." Read more here. As a person of color, Kaneesha Willie has dealt with racism her entire life. Participating in her hometown's protest in Paducah, Kentucky, gave her an opportunity to show her young, mixed-race kids that their voices matter -- especially as black people are fighting to be heard in the wake of George Floyd's death. The 23-year-old said she was proud to see her small town fight for justice in such a big way at the Chief Paduke statue, a historical marker for the town. "We all bleed red," Willie said. "We are all one and the protest really showed that our community came together. It was beautiful." Thousands have demonstrated in communities across the world to protest and demand racial justice in the aftermath of Floyd's death. The national stage has shown us protests in big cities like Washington, DC, New York City and Los Angeles, but small towns that dot the map -- ones you may never hear about -- are also showing small acts of solidarity. In State College, Pennsylvania; Farmington, Missouri; Holland, Arkansas; Solebury, Pennsylvania; and other towns, people are making their voices heard. Read the full story: The Virginia State Police issued 43 charges on Friday after a group of protesters entered the main interstate highway, the I-95, in Prince William County. Corinne Geller, public relations director of the Virginia State Police, said in an emailed statement that the protesters were charged with unlawful assembly, obstructing free passage of others and obstruction of justice after they blocked all travel on the interstate, including in the express lanes. According to police, the group of about 75 people entered the interstate at Exit 152, marched north on the I-95 and entered the express lanes before heading south, where they were approached by state troopers.   Geller said that when state troopers approached, the group refused to comply with verbal commands to leave the interstate, and several of the protesters ran across the travel lanes into the woods.  ##At The Protests## CNN's chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta says there is a risk the coronavirus will spread at protests across the US, where streets are packed with people chanting, screaming and potentially coughing because of tear gas. "The virus is still out there, it is still very contagious," Gupta said.   On the plus side, he added, "a lot of people wear masks, that is good. We know masks can have significant impacts on the spread of the virus. The protests are mostly outside, which is also good because the virus will disperse more into the air." However, people being in close proximity to each other is a problem, Gupta said. If they become infected with Covid-19 at a protest, it will be that much harder to do contact tracing. "They are not obviously physically distancing and they are staying in these positions for longer than 10 or 15 minutes," Gupta said. "So you have many situations where you have close contact, and if people are then subsequently diagnosed with an infection, it's a question of how do you go back and trace contacts of people in a protest. It’s very hard to do." The protests are also happening at a time when the US is beginning to reopen, and as a result it may be difficult to know how much of an impact these protests have on new coronavirus infections. "Protesters need to do their part to curb the spread of the virus. And also to think about after they go home. What they might do to potentially not spread the virus to people in their family, in their community. That will be important over the next several weeks," Gupta said. ##At The Protests## Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took a knee during a Black Lives Matter demonstration in Ottawa on Friday. Trudeau's act of solidarity comes after he declined to comment earlier in the day about whether he would be attending the protest. Still, he arrived at Parliament Hill -- home to Canada's Parliament -- wearing a black cloth mask Friday afternoon and surrounded by security guards, according to CNN affiliate CTVnews.  Trudeau did not speak at the event, though he clapped and nodded along with some of the other speakers, including when a speaker asserted there is no middle ground on racism. At another point, he yelled "Amen" along with other protesters after a speaker discussed promoting love and justice. Read the full story. Watch: Up to 3,000 people have gathered in central Sydney after a court overturned a previous protest ban over social distancing concerns.  "These protests here today are inspired by what's happening in the US. People are hyper aware of that and are very supportive of that -- and we have our own issues in Australia," journalist Angus Watson told CNN. Organized by indigenous rights groups -- among others -- under the banner “Stop Black Deaths in Custody,” rallies are also going ahead in Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide. Some background: Australia's indigenous population -- composed of mainland Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders -- makes up 2.4% of the country's 25 million people, yet accounts for more than a quarter of its total prisoner population. ​ Analysis from Change the Record, an Aboriginal-led justice coalition, found that there have been 449 indigenous deaths in custody between 1980 and 2011, which represents 24% of all deaths in custody over that period. "They want their voices heard, they feel like there has not been any convictions, there has not been any justice," Watson said. "These protests in Sydney here today are matched across the country in Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and other centers. People saying that they're angry, they're fed up and they want to be heard." If you're just tuning into our live coverage, here are the important headlines today: Protesters rally across Australia: Supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement have gathered for rallies in Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide today. A court overturned an injunction banning a march and rally in Sydney, and crowds have started to assemble. Tribute to Breonna Taylor: A crowd of peaceful protesters near the White House in Washington, DC, sang "Happy Birthday" in memory of Taylor, who was killed by police in March and who would have turned 27 today. Noticeably absent was the presence of law enforcement. However city officials are expecting a bigger demonstration on Saturday. Facebook's policies to be reviewed: Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook will review its policies concerning the state use of force, voter suppression and content moderation, as the company faces a backlash from many of its own workers over its inaction on controversial posts by US President Donald Trump.  Cyclist arrested over rant: Detectives have arrested and charged the cyclist caught on video accosting three people as they posted flyers in support of Black Lives Matter. The cyclist, who police identified as 60-year-old Anthony Brennan III, of Kensington, Maryland, was charged with three counts of second-degree assault. Biden says Trump putting words in Floyd's mouth is "despicable": Presumptive 2020 Democratic nominee Joe Biden sharply criticized Trump for invoking Floyd's name as the President was taking a victory lap over lower unemployment numbers. NFL wrong for not listening to players about racism, commissioner says: Roger Goodell said it has been a difficult time for the US -- in particular black Americans -- and offered his condolences to the families of Floyd, Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and "all the families who have endured police brutality." ##Catch Up## CNN correspondent Shimon Prokupecz is on the ground in Manhattan, New York City, where another curfew is in effect. Prokupecz said several protests are happening across the city, although it's "relatively quiet." Police have made arrests, he added. A small group of protesters marched from Gracie Mansion -- the residence of New York City's mayor -- and walked up 82nd Street. "The minute they got to 82nd Street, police decided to move in. What's interesting is this is only 30 minutes into the curfew," Prokupecz said. "Yesterday, we saw arrests about an hour and a half into the curfew. There were 18 arrests here, and it's really discretionary. That's what's interesting, it's up to in most cases the borough commander." About 18 people were arrested on charges of violating the curfew after police issued warnings to the crowd, Prokupecz said. ##At The Protests## On June 5, 1968, US presidential hopeful Robert F. Kennedy gave his final speech -- about institutional and anti-black violence -- before he was assassinated. Speaking to CNN's Don Lemon on Friday, his daughter, Kerry Kennedy, said her father's words on an issue "that has been in the country ... for 401 years" are still relevant to those protesting today. "We need to defund the police. We need to redirect the funds to community-based programs and housing, education and healthcare, and mental healthcare," Kennedy said. "We need to deincarcerate our jails. We need to address mass incarceration. We need to end cash bail. There's so much that needs to be done in this country. To stop this anti-black violence that's been here since the start." Kennedy said that while this is a time of "profound pain and sadness," it was also a moment to harness. "We have to harness the momentum of this moment and push forward. There's going to be a time when protesters are going to get off the streets and people will go back to their lives," she said. "So this is it. And for those of us who care about these issues, for those of us who want to stop the anti-black violence in our country, we need to seize this moment. We need to seek out those local black-led institutions, and support them. We need to educate ourselves." Watch: A court in Australia has overturned an injunction which banned a march and rally in Sydney today in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, according to lawmaker David Shoebridge. New South Wales state officials had sought to ban the protest due to social distancing concerns and received an injunction Friday night. The New South Wales Court of Appeals overturned that ruling Saturday. Protesters have already started gathering in Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide today. New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees said in a post on Instagram Friday that the NFL protests were never about the American flag. Brees' post comes after he initially said Wednesday he would "never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag." He later issued an apology, saying his comments were "insensitive and completely missed the mark on the issues we are facing right now as a country." President Donald Trump then became involved, saying Brees should have never backtracked on his comments.  "He should not have taken back his original stance on honoring our magnificent American Flag," Trump tweeted. "OLD GLORY is to be revered, cherished, and flown high..." Brees responded to Trump on Instagram, tagging the President and saying that "we can no longer use the flag to turn people away or distract them from the real issues that face our black communities."  "Through my ongoing conversations with friends, teammates, and leaders in the black community, I realize this is not an issue about the American flag. It has never been," Brees' post read. "We can no longer use the flag to turn people away or distract them from the real issues that face our black communities." Read the full story: ##White House## There were no arrests at protests in Atlanta, Georgia, on Friday, police said. A total of 352 arrests had previously been made at protests in the city since the demonstrations over the death of George Floyd started on Friday, May 29. A pilot drew a unique tribute to George Floyd over Canada by following a flight path in the shape of a raised fist.  Dimitri Neonakis took to the Nova Scotia sky on Thursday with his personal message to Floyd. He said he chose the fist because it's a symbol of the movement against racism.  "We all have to speak out and we have to end it," Neonakis said. "There are no borders when it comes to racism."  Neonakis mapped out the image on an app and then followed the line for the fist in his plane. He said it took him about two and a half hours at 150 miles per hour to finish the image.  Read the full story. Protesters supporting the Black Lives Matter movement have started gathering for rallies in the Australian cities of Brisbane, Melbourne and Adelaide today. A rally is also expected to go ahead in Sydney despite a Supreme Court injunction ruling it illegal because of social distancing rules. Organizers have lodged an appeal, which is still pending. The rallies have been been organized by indigenous rights groups -- among others -- under the banner “Stop Black Deaths in Custody.” The indigenous community left behind: Australia's indigenous population -- composed of mainland Aboriginal people and Torres Strait Islanders -- makes up 2.4% of the country's 25 million people, yet accounts for more than a quarter of its total prisoner population. ​ Analysis from Change the Record, an Aboriginal-led justice coalition, found that there have been 449 indigenous deaths in custody between 1980 and 2011, which represents 24% of all deaths in custody over that period. Read more on that here. Mark Zuckerberg says Facebook will review its policies concerning the state use of force, voter suppression and content moderation, as the company faces a backlash from many of its own workers over its inaction on controversial posts by US President Donald Trump.  In a note to employees that he later shared on his Facebook page Friday, Zuckerberg acknowledged that the decision about Trump's posts "left many of you angry, disappointed and hurt."  The Facebook co-founder and CEO also addressed the protests that have erupted across the United States following the death of George Floyd in police custody. "To members of our Black community: I stand with you. Your lives matter. Black lives matter," he wrote. Zuckerberg's remarks come days after he hosted a contentious town hall with Facebook employees, a number of whom expressed outrage at the social media giant's decision not to take action against posts by Trump that rival platform Twitter flagged as having violated its own rules. Read the full story: A large crowd of peaceful protesters in Washington, DC, is heading for Lafayette Park near the White House. CNN correspondent Alex Marquardt said the protesters are "finishing this week how they started it, by protesting peacefully." Sitting on some 250 yoga mats donated by a social worker's advocacy group, they sang "Happy Birthday" to Breonna Taylor, who was killed by police in March and who would have turned 27 today.  A new street sign has also been erected at the intersection of 16th and 8th streets reading "Black Lives Matter Plaza." "This is where that fierce crackdown happened against those protesters on Monday night who were protesting peacefully right before the President gave that speech in the Rose Garden, when he declared himself the 'law and order' President," Marquardt said. Noticeably absent is the presence of law enforcement. However city officials are expecting a bigger demonstration on Saturday. "These protesters have been out here all week by the hundreds, by the thousands, gathering right here at Lafayette Park by the White House, and behind that fence, which has been reinforced throughout the course of the week, is almost no law enforcement that we can see," Marquardt said. "It is the least amount of law enforcement that I have seen all week and that speaks to how peaceful these protests have been. There is no curfew in this city of Washington tonight. But now city officials are saying that they are expecting a huge demonstration tomorrow. The biggest they think that they anticipate since they began in the city of Washington." ##At The Protests## Detectives from the Maryland-National Capital Park Police have arrested and charged the cyclist caught on video Monday accosting three people as they posted flyers in support of Black Lives Matter. The cyclist, identified as 60-year-old Anthony Brennan III, of Kensington, Maryland, was charged with three counts of second-degree assault, a release from Park Police said. A man and two women were walking the trail, posting flyers in support of Black Lives Matter, when the suspect started to argue with them and grabbed the flyers, police said. According to police, the suspect then pushed his bicycle and started to charge one of the victims, causing them to fall to the ground.  Police said community members sent in hundreds of tips, and detectives utilized various sources to further corroborate the information provided before developing Brennan as a primary suspect.   An arrest warrant was subsequently obtained and served on Brennan on Friday evening, after he had voluntarily turned himself into detectives, the release said.      CNN has reached out to Brennan’s legal counsel for comment. Two officers were suspended without pay and one supervisor was transferred after three incidents during recent New York City protests, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea announced. The officer seen pushing a woman to the ground in a May 29 incident in Brooklyn is suspended without pay after an Internal Affairs Bureau (IAB) investigation, and a supervisor who was on the scene will also be transferred, Shea said. Each of those cases has been referred to the Department Advocate for disciplinary action. The officer seen pulling down an individual's face mask and pepper spraying him is suspended without pay after an IAB investigation. That case has also been referred to the Department Advocate for disciplinary action. “Like all New Yorkers, we are acutely aware of the unique times we are in,” Shea said Friday. “While the investigations have to play out, based on the severity of what we saw, it is appropriate and necessary to assure the public that there will be transparency during the disciplinary process.” ##At The Protests##
READ MORE