Voices of Minnesota: Calls for change across the state

Protests large and small have emerged across Minnesota since the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

MPR News is talking to some of the people behind rallies, marches and demonstrations happening beyond the Twin Cities metro area — about their experiences with race in Minnesota, why they march and what they hope for the future.

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Immigration is a hot topic this election year. But the issue isn’t just political. It’s personal. MPR News host Angela Davis co-hosted a North Star Journey Live conversation with experts who gave us an intimate look at how the border crisis is impacting Minnesota’s immigrant families.
UMD student group smashes stereotypes, builds support for Black men
Hundreds of students peacefully marched through the campus of the University of Minnesota Duluth Wednesday evening, demanding racial justice and an end to police brutality. The protest was organized by a relatively new student group on campus: Black Men Serving Excellence.
In tiny Pine Island, demonstrators plan third anti-racism protest
For the third time, Black Lives Matter protesters will gather in the southeast Minnesota town of Pine Island this weekend. The group wants to spark honest conversations about racial justice in the wake of George Floyd’s killing. But some say the protesters are creating divisions that don’t exist. 
Meet the Black activists behind the '10K' protests in the Twin Cities
A former NBA player and a man who nearly lost his life to gun violence are behind a new group trying to bring 10,000 people to each demonstration they organize against racism and police brutality.
Nick Brey, Gabriela Trapero and Briar Lenz: This moment is ‘more than a trend’
People don’t talk openly about racial inequities in St. James, a town of about 5,000. But after the killing of George Floyd, those who supported the Black Lives Matter movement suddenly saw things with razor-sharp focus. That was when three St. James high school students started organizing a protest in town.
Niki Botzet and Mattie Bogart: Partnering for racial justice in Alexandria
Two college students have organized racial justice protests in the small central Minnesota city of Alexandria, but they intend to keep it top of mind for residents long after the protests end.
Buddy King: With an eye to St. Cloud’s past, looking to change the future
The city has made significant strides in overcoming the racial injustice of its past, but still has work to do, King said. The nonprofit leader and youth pastor, who recently organized a youth march in St. Cloud, is seeking a seat on the City Council. “You can see [the racism] really clearly in systems more than you can see it in people. That’s what we’ve got to change,” he said.
Muntaas Farah and Yezi Gugsa: Teenagers lead the charge in Rochester
In Rochester, the most recent iteration of the Black Lives Matter protests have been led by a group of teenagers who say racism in their largely white city is both subtle and exhausting.
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