US racial inequality protests entering fifth day

From Chicago and Miami to Philadelphia and New York, angry race demonstrations in the US are entering a fifth day.

Protesters shut down freeways, chanting “I can’t breathe” and held “die-ins” in the streets. On Saturday, two police officers were injured as demonstrators smashed windows and hurled rocks at police, authorities said.

Black protesters are furious about a grand jury’s decision not to indict a white New York City police officer in the choking death of Eric Garner, an unarmed black man, and took to the streets nationwide late Sunday in a fifth day of demonstrations.

Officers used smoke and tear gas after crowds refused to disperse. Six people were arrested Saturday in Berkeley, bringing to at least 300 the number of people arrested across the country during the protests following the decision not to indict Officer Daniel Pantaleo.

Marchers in Berkeley, California, chanted: “Shut it down for Michael Brown.” The white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri who shot Brown, was also aquitted.

In Chicago, about 100 churches organized peaceful rallies throughout the day while in Miami protesters marched onto interstate 195, shutting down the causeway in both directions.

In Philadelphia, about 200 protesters and clergy staged a “die-in,” in which demonstrators lie down on the street, outside the South Philadelphia Sports Complex following the Philadelphia Eagles and Seattle Seahawks game.

Fans leaving the stadium could be heard jeering at the protesters. A black protester said such taunts show work remains to be done on educating people about racial inequality.

In Miami protesters marched onto Interstate 195, shutting down the road in both directions.

Black pro athletes joined in with their own form of protest Sunday: Davin Joseph, an offensive lineman for the St. Louis Rams, penned “I can’t breathe” on his cleats, and Johnson Bademosi, a defensive back for the Cleveland Browns, wore a shirt with the same message penned on the back. That followed Derrick Rose, a point guard for the Chicago Bulls, who on Saturday night also wore a shirt bearing the words during a pre-game warm-up.