Word of Mouth Protest Gathers Dozens for Fourth Day of Bowling Green Demonstrations

Jun 1, 2020

Protestors march from the Bowling Green Police Department to Circus Square Park on Monday.
Credit Becca Schimmel

Protests against racism and police violence directed at minorities continued for a fourth striaght day Monday morning in Bowling Green.

Posts spread across social media and text message drew dozens of people outside the Warren County Justice Center to hold signs, march, and hear speakers discuss the civil unrest seen in much of the country.

Derik Overstreet is a local mixed martial arts fighter who agreed to help oragnize and co-lead the mostly college-aged crowd in its peaceful gathering.

"In the beginning of the week, I was trying to find MMA fights, trying to find events. And now, a week later, I'm out here marching, and I love that. It's a good thing," Overstreet said. "It feels like I'm on the right side of history."

Overstreet said increasing positive communication between communities, the working class, and law enforcement will help the country heal.

Outside the Bowling Green police station, Overstreet drew comparisons between how someone that only sees violent representations of recent protests would have a negative view of demonstrators, and how someone who only has negative experiences with police would think poorly of law enforcement.

"It's not a thing of all cops being bad personally. But if the system they represent and the people they work for has been consistantly based throughout its history on oppression, then what they stand for is bad. What they represent is bad," Overstreet said. 

A common theme of Monday's protest was the morality behind non-black individuals coming together to support causes like Black Lives Matter.

An individual who went by Guero, who Overstreet nicknamed "Street Jesus," co-led the crowd of around 100 people while wearing a rosary and carrying a megaphone.

"I'm tired of our people being demonized. Our people, as in, the people who have more melanin than normal. Whether black or dark brown, or whatever, we're often demonized," Guero said, "I'm tired of it. I felt the need to show up and be like, 'We can have change that's peaceful. We don't have to be demonized and be seen as a problem. We can be the solution."

The demonstrators first marched from the Warren County Justice Center to the Bowling Green Police Department, where on Friday, a motorist appeared to intentionally bump into a protester with his truck.

The crowd then continued to Circus Square Park before finally coming to a stop on the corner of 13th St and College St.

Protests have erupted globally in the wake of recent deaths of multiple unarmed black individuals at the hands of police, including a Louisville Emergency Medical Technician.