Byram Black Lives Matter Rally Set for Saturday

A group of local residents will rally support of the Black community this weekend.

"Black Lives Matter Byram goes from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday at CO Johnson Park. The group, called Patriots Alumni for Social Action (PASA), hopes to build on momentum from similar events in Newton June 6 and in Sparta last weekend, both of which brought hundreds of attendees.

David Kain, who grew up in Byram and is helping organize Saturday’s rally, said the event will feature guest speakers and a voter registration area. Several local residents who gave speeches at the Newton and Sparta rallies will speak again in Byram, including Scott Paul, a Newton resident who, last weekend, announced a write-in campaign for county freeholder.

Having grown up in a township and county that is predominantly white, Kain said he has encountered many residents and classmates who deny that racism exists.

“This is kind of an event where we want to say, ‘Hey, (racism) is real. It happens here, so come out and listen if you want,’” Kain said.

Kain referenced a recent New Jersey Herald article in which a Byram police officer was suspended for an “allegedly disparaging social media post about the recent Black Lives Matter protests” — specifics of the post have not been released to the public —as a sign that the community needs to be more aware of the movement and its overall message.

The community has been “really helpful,” Kain said, with several local restaurants and other businesses providing donations to hold the rally. He also credited others in the Byram Police Department, specifically Lt. Brian Moreland, in working with the organizers to plan a safe event."


Source:  NJ Herald,