Bikes-Up, Guns-Down Movement

By: Daisha Johnson

The Bikes-up, Guns-down movement started some years ago to stop gun violence within the black community of South Florida. Every year on Martin Luther King Jr.’s weekend, multitudes of people gather together to ride through the streets of Miami-Dade County.  And every year, it seems that the numbers grow, but just like with other good causes for the black community, it’s seen by the public eye as something bad.

Most people think it’s a good cause and a way to get public awareness, but others believe it causes a disruption to the community. The movement has gone on for some years now, and still officials haven’t found a way to work with the problem instead of just arresting people on motor vehicles.  Unfortunately, without conversations, shutting them down only makes the situation worse and causes the community to retaliate.

“Wheels Up, Guns Down lost whatever positive message they had years ago,” Miami-Dade police Director Juan Perez said.  “Once you cross the line and blatantly endanger other drivers, pedestrians and yourselves, people stop listening to the message and only watch the chaos being created. It’s become an excuse for disobedience and lawlessness.” The comments Director Perez said were true and  no one should endanger the lives of any other person; however, the black community should be given an opportunity to have a voice and to express publicly their ideals without being shut down.

Unfortunately, the accidents that occur are mainly from the bikers trying escape from police officers. The Bikes-up, Guns-down movement only occurs once a year, and we should, as a multi-cultural community, to try to find a way to make the movement a success.  Yes, the movement has flaws, but if we work together, the government, police officers, and the black community, we can have a peaceful demonstration which can change the lives of many good people.

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