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What Black Lives Matter means to an 11-year-old

Eleven-year-old Jolia Bossette on being a Black kid in America.

Welcome to our first-ever week of programming for kids!

The killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and hundreds of other Black Americans at the hands of police officers have inspired protests across the country and around the world.

The news coverage has been impossible for most of us to ignore, and it begs the question: How are kids, especially Black kids, processing this reality? How do they make sense of these deaths and the systemic factors that made them possible?

In June of 2020,11-year-old Californian Jolia Bossette decided to use her fifth-grade graduation speech as an occasion to give voice to her thoughts and feelings. In her speech, she reminisced about how she was "the cutest thing," as a toddler and asked, "But when did I stop being cute and start being scary?"

"Does my dad scare you? Does my mom scare you? Does my auntie scare you? Because let me tell you something: We are not scary."

Check out Vox’s Today Explained podcast, which features a great episode for all ages about racial justice in the US:

Historian Michael Kazin explains how the Black Lives Matter movement fits into the tradition of American political and cultural movements, (Vox):

We designed these episodes for kids ages 9-13, but we hope all of our audience enjoys them! You can find all of our kids videos here:

You may notice that comments are disabled on our kids’ videos. This is a default function of YouTube for kids' programming.

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