CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – State Representative Marvin Pendarvis decided to take part in Charleston’s peaceful protest on May 30 and shared how his feelings on the event.
“It was one of the most incredible environments I’ve ever been in and I felt obligated to be there as a black man and as a black father,” said Rep. Pendarvis as he explained the importance of participating in the protest.
He said that often times political figures do not go on the front lines of protests and usually leave it to activists, but he felt that he should challenge that notion and be there because he has an important voice in the community.
The peaceful protest would later, in the evening, turn into riots that would leave several businesses damaged in Charleston.
Rep. Pendarvis said he does not condone violence but did say he understood why people would be upset.
“You continue to see these instances across the country where our lives just don’t seem to matter, where we don’t seem to be valued then it leads to anger and frustration and I honestly I just feel like we’re at a tipping point.”Rep. Marvin Pendarvis, (D) – District 113
He points to history as one of the main reasons that people are still very upset with situations involving racial injustice in the country.
“Look around, you have, historically, a country that for several hundred years enslaved a group of people and then after they got out of slavery they were the subject of racism, ridicule and laws enacted to continue to marginalize them.”Rep. Marvin Pendarvis, (D) – District 113
He added that George Floyd’s legacy should not just be about his death, but how we use his memory, and the memory of others who have been killed, to help improve the community.
Rep. Pendarvis believes change will come, but says change begins right at home.
“We can’t change the world without changing our community first and we can’t change our community without changing our backyard so let’s work on that.”