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Protest at Primal Scream Leads to Chaotic Exchange

“I know that people are tired,” Cole said. “But it’s important that we keep rallying, keep pushing.”

“Tonight we said black lives matter, and they really do,” Walker said.

Protest in Lamont
Protesters and members of the Harvard Band crowd the foyer of Lamont Library early Tuesday morning after the protesters tried to delay the start of Primal Scream with a moment of silence for victims of racial violence.

Members of the protest said that they were upset by the reactions of the student streakers.

Amanda D. Bradley ’15, who helped organize the protest, said that while she did not know the intentions of the primal screamers, she felt disgusted by what they were chanting.

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“For people to say black lives matter, and for the crowd to shout back ‘U.S.A.,’ which is upholding a system that is oppressing black people, I think that that is problematic,” she said.

Sasanka N. Jinadasa ’15 said she was appalled by what she called a disrespect both for Khurana and the protestors.

“I think that for many students of color, particularly black students, there’s always a fear of what white retaliation looks like,” she said, citing obscene gestures and language toward protesters.

Keyanna Y. Wigglesworth ’16, another protester, said she was “disturbed” and “angered” by reactions to the protest, especially from those in the front of the crowd of streakers who she believed could hear the calls for silence.

Meanwhile, some students participating in the run said they were confused by the demonstration and unaware that it was taking place.

Emily Savage ’15, a runner, said she did not know that a protest was occurring.

“It killed me that I had no knowledge of the four-and-a-half minute silence,” she said. “And I think I speak for so many students when I say that it's so unfortunate [that we didn't know it was happening].”

Skip L. Rosamilia ’17, a Primal Scream participant, said that he could not hear or see through the crowd of streakers.

“I’m sad because it...look[ed] like there was one group who was for [the demonstration] and a huge group that wasn’t, and I don’t think that was the case,” he said, calling the interaction between the protest and the streakers a “huge egregious misunderstanding.”

Khurana also said many runners told him that they would have joined the protesting students if they had known about the demonstration.

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