Always be willing to wield your influence for what’s right!
Media mogul Oprah Winfrey launched a billboard campaign in Louisville, Kentucky, to demand officers be arrested and charged in the case of Breonna Taylor, CBS News reports.
Taylor’s case rose to prominence on social media some months ago through various activists and organizers’ efforts. On March 13th, police entered Taylor’s home using a no-knock warrant in search of illegal drugs while she and her boyfriend lay asleep. Taylor’s boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, claims that officers never announced themselves, prompting him to fire at what he thought were intruders. Officers fired back, fatally shooting Taylor, a 26-year-old essential EMT worker. Discrepancies in the officers’ stories and the case, including the fact that drugs were never found, sparked outrage across the nation.
Among those demanding justice for Breonna Taylor is Winfrey. More than 150 days since her murder, not one officer responsible for her death has been arrested or charged, despite mounting public pressure. This week, Winfrey erected 26 billboards across Louisville, one for each year Taylor was alive. Emblazoned on each billboard is a portrait of Taylor, a quote from Winfrey, the website for Until Freedom, and a call to action: “Demand that the police involved in killing Breonna Taylor be arrested and charged.”
O Magazine Places 26 Billboards of Breonna Taylor Cover in Louisville, Kentucky https://t.co/IvN9wu4Qtfadvertisement
— O The Oprah Magazine (@oprahmagazine) August 7, 2020
The portrait of Taylor will be featured on the September cover of “O Magazine,” the first time in 20 years that Winfrey is not featured on the cover. The quote on the billboard from the talk show maven reads, “If you turn a blind eye to racism, you become an accomplice to it.” A bold statement, the magazine site urges citizens to support Until Freedom, a social justice organization on the ground in Louisville fighting for justice in Taylor’s case. The statement also encourages “people to sign petitions, call Kentucky officials, donate to local bail funds, and use #SayHerName on social media” to spread awareness.
Winfrey is one of several celebrities who have rallied around the case demanding justice for Taylor. She recently tweeted about her motivations, saying, “Breonna Taylor. She was just like me. She was just like you. And like everyone who dies unexpectedly, she had plans. Plans for a future filled with responsibility and work and friends and laughter. I think about Breonna Taylor often. Imagine if three unidentified men burst into your home while you were sleeping. And your partner fired a gun to protect you. And then, mayhem. What I know for sure: We can’t be silent. We have to use whatever megaphone we have to cry for justice.”
To learn more about the fight for Breonna Taylor, visit untilfreedom.com.
Thank you, Oprah!
Photo Courtesy of Kyle Gordon/Best Dad Media/Oprah Mag