On Tuesday night, as a means of self-preservation, Solange deleted her Twitter account. But before she did, she issued a goodbye and a pressing call to action:
“When we gonna pull up? & what we got to do to get my new hero Takiyah Thompson free?”
Takiyah Thompson, a 22-year-old college student at North Carolina Central University, was charged with two felonies and two misdemeanors in connection with the recent toppling of a Confederate monument in Durham, N.C. Meanwhile, the white nationalists who nearly beat Deandre Harris to a pulp are still running rampant, wild and free of consequence.
“Anything that emboldens those people and anything that gives those people pride, needs to be crushed in the same way that they want to crush black people and the other groups that they target,” Thompson told Democracy Now! on Wednesday. But if you let 45 tell it, “the beauty that is being taken out of our cities, towns and parks will be greatly missed and never able to be comparably replaced,” as stated in a series of sickening tweets he published Thursday morning.
“The group pulled the statue down, and she’s the one who got arrested,” Yaba Blay—Dan Blue Endowed Chair in Political Science at North Carolina Central University—tells CASSIUS. Blay, who taught Thompson’s Black Lives Matter class last year, regards Thompson as one of her “most brilliant students” who “gets it.”
“It’s interesting that the Black woman becomes the face. Here’s this student who’s now charged with felonies,” Blay continues. “How much does a statue cost?”
Four other activists have been arrested since Thompson was met with charges. On Thursday morning, Durham residents gathered outside the Durham County Detention Facility to symbolically turn themselves in as an act of solidarity.
“I’m proud of Durham,” Blay adds. “I think we are seeing new ways of allyship, because they were predominately white folks who were like ‘Okay, if y’all are gonna target particular organizers, then target me, too.’ We are hopeful the DA will drop the charges, or at least not pursue felony charges.”
You can help by calling the DA and demanding they drop charges against Thompson at 919-808-3010 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.
You can also donate to Deandre Harris’ recovery via his GoFundMe campaign.