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At Discovery Green, Houston had its say in the death of Alton Sterling, even if the crowd gathering would be rocked again by Philando Castile.

On Wednesday night, as a Zumba class was held and parents and children played in the park, a vigil was held at the center of Discovery Green to honor Alton Sterling, the 37-year-old husband and father who was shot and killed by a Baton Rouge police officer. Unfortunately, this kind of occurrence is seemingly becoming the new normal: as white Texans enjoy a day in the park, Black ones often come together to mourn another unnecessary death at the hands of overzealous police officers.

The crowd of Black millennials assembled at Discovery Green vented and shared a variety of emotions, whether it was frustration with the justice system; the deafening silence of the white majority; or weariness with the never-ending cycle of mourning, numbness, and death at the hands of police brutality. The prevailing question ? What is the proper course of action? Where do we go from here?

In the wake of the Ferguson Riots and the Baltimore Uprising, the issue of “what to do going forward,” remains one that is still unanswered and one that may likely continue to be so. There is no correct course of action to deal with the effects of white supremacy and police brutality. The black community has seemingly spent all of its political,social, and economic reserves so far as dealing with these issues, and yet the results seem few and far between. Those who identify as allies in political positions often sit idly on their hands when it’s not an election year. Allies with high social status drop the ball when their voice need be heard the most. And economically, so many dollars have seemingly been wasted as a new Jim Crow has taken effect and the modern-day police force has become militarized.

An EDM mashup of “Planet Rock” blared out in the background, but it was overshadowed by those young Black millennials in Discovery Green, many of whom by that point had begun to express their disenchantment with protest.

“Until people start putting together action, all the protesting is not gonna work,” one young man named Clark told those gathered. “Like we’ve just been talking. It’s been years and we’re STILL talking, and people are STILL getting murdered by cops. So until action is put behind the talk, we aren’t gonna get anywhere.”

The sunset over Discovery Green in the heart of the ever-changing face of Houston is supposed to be a beautiful sight. Last night, that sunset seemed to suggest something else – that just as the sun was sinking in the sky, so too were hopes dwindling for a future where Black lives might finally matter.

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