A peaceful Black Lives Matter protest – one of many taking place in and around Milwaukee (and, of course, beyond) – since the police killing May 25 of George Floyd in Minneapolis – rolled through East Tosa on Thursday, and at the center of it all was an eloquent 7-year-old speaker.
The group, hundreds-strong, started out on 27th and Center Streets hours earlier and ultimately moved along North Avenue, making multiple stops on its way toward Mayfair Mall, including one at 68th and North in East Tosa, to listen to speakers rally the protesters.
The star of the show at that stop was undoubtedly a 7-year-old Milwaukee girl named Amerah Wright, who spoke just briefly, but her simple words were eloquent and powerful.
"We are all humans," she said. "We should all be treated right. We shouldn't be treated different. We shouldn't be treated bad, we should be treated good. Because there's everybody in this world just like me that should be treated right."
Amerah also made a plea for the police to stand with the community.
"The police are supposed to be standing with us, not against us," she said.
Speaking after the people gathered were encouraged to introduce themselves to someone they didn't know standing nearby, Amerah's words drew cheers and affirmations and further heightened the sense of unity, and she was lifted above the crowd for all to see.
If Milwaukee is the one of the most segregated cities in the country (and surely it is), you wouldn't know it from the crowds at the protests here.
Milwaukee, listen to Amerah and help her make the future she deserves.
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in an episode of TV's "Party of Five," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.