TIME North Carolina

Young Girl Gives Tearful Speech at Charlotte City Council Meeting

"It's a shame that our fathers and mothers are killed and we can't see them anymore"

A young girl cried as she spoke at the first Charlotte City Council meeting since Keith Lamont Scott was shot to death by police in that city.

Zianna Oliphant spoke at the emotional meeting with tears running down her cheeks, bemoaning the relationship between the police and black residents of Charlotte, CNN reports.

“It’s a shame that our fathers and mothers are killed and we can’t see them anymore,” she said. “It’s a shame that we have to go to their graveyard and bury them. And we have tears. We shouldn’t have tears. We need our fathers and mothers to be by our side.”

Police say Keith Scott was armed with a handgun and deemed a threat when he was shot, but his family says he was reading a book. Heated protests followed in the city.

“I’ve been born and raised in Charlotte,” Oliphant said. “And I never felt this way till now and I can’t stand how we’re treated … We are black people and we shouldn’t have to feel like this. We shouldn’t have to protest because y’all are treating us wrong. We do this because we need to and have rights.”

[CNN]

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