RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The weekend’s unrest in the city of Richmond has sparked a lot of conversation, emotion and questions.
With many needing a space to vent, heal and address their views on racial inequality, local radio hosts provided an outlet Monday morning over the airwaves.
DJ King Tutt and Clovia Lawrence, otherwise known as Community Clo, both host their own shows on 99.3 and 105.7 KISS FM at Radio One. Together they both ‘paused for the cause’, turning down the music to turn up the candid conversation.
Tutt started the ‘Radio One Real Talk’ at 10 a.m. in the studio saying, “What is going on? I’ll tell you what, the city is just in despair, confusion, and anger.”
Over the weekend, peaceful protests over the death of George Floyd and police brutality turned into riots in the city of Richmond and across the nation.
Tutt shared his take on the airways stating, “We watched a black man with allegedly a fake $20 dollar bill die at the hands of police. Listen, there are other people in this world who are not colored skinned that have shot up schools, shot up malls, churches–killing multiple people. They are arrested and they have their day in court. Yet a brown colored person can be accused of jaywalking and end up dead.”
Tutt and Clovia, like many, voiced their pain, anger, and frustration, but say the overall message is being hijacked.
The city of Richmond was comparable to a war zone over the weekend with vehicles set on fire, businesses looted, windows smashed and buildings vandalized.
“If you are out vandalizing, if you are out burning, you’re no better than the bad police who are killing innocent people,” Tutt scolded.
He and Clovia encouraged listeners to call in and voice what they’re feeling or share anything on their heart.
One call voiced, “What does a liquor store have to do with protesting? What does a clothing store have to do with protesting?”
Another caller said, ” I would like to see more community liaisons. Not everybody knows the right way to protest. The black race is a special race because we’ve been oppressed for so long.”
Special guests were also invited to call-in throughout the show. Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney joined the conversation.
“We should all be appalled,” Stoney said. “That pain is real and that pain is raw. That is why you’re seeing frustration in the streets and that’s playing out in the streets. We still haven’t healed properly as a nation or here as a city.”
Stoney also talked about needing a national leader in office who sends the right message during trying times.
Jim Herring, a resident, called in and told the public he is a Trump supporter and George Floyd was murdered after being crushed to death.
Herring said we need solutions and conversations, not riots.
When asked by Clovia if Trump’s language on Twitter is dividing the nation, Herring said he believes Trump is not pulling people apart and he himself wouldn’t have used that language, but our President is human and everyone makes mistakes.
Henrico County Commonwealth’s Attorney Shannon Taylor dialed-in, advising all people to evoke change by getting out and voting, saying “many have reached a breaking point”.
Tutt and Clovia ended their special broadcast urging people to peacefully assemble and to report any illegal looting or vandalizing.
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