“Coco Gauff gives speech at Black Lives Matter protest: ‘We must change now’”
June 4, 2020 | 1:27pm
Gauff attended a recent Black Lives Matter protest in her Delray Beach, Fla. hometown and gave a speech.
“I think it’s sad that I’m here protesting the same thing that [my grandmother] did 50-plus years ago,” Gauff said. “So I’m here to tell you guys that we must first love each other no matter what. We must have the tough conversations with our friends. I’ve been spending all week having tough conversations, trying to educate my non-black friends on how they can help the movement. Second, we need to take action.”
During the speech, Gauff said there are many ways people can deliver change, such as voting and using their voice.
“I saw a Dr. (Martin Luther) King quote that said, ‘The silence of the good people is worse than the brutality of the bad people,’” she said. “So, you need to not be silent. If you are choosing silence, you’re choosing the side of the oppressor.”
Gauff has also been active on social media. When Roger Federer joined the social media #BlackOutTuesday movement by posting a black square, she posted a link to blacklives.matter.carrd.co, which offers a variety of ways to make a difference through donations, petitions and other resources.
“This is not just about George Floyd,” she said during the peaceful protest. “This is about Trayvon Martin. This is about Eric Garner. This is about Breonna Taylor. This is about stuff that’s been happening. I was eight years old when Trayvon Martin was killed. So why am I here at 16 still demanding change? And it breaks my heart because I’m fighting for the future of my brothers. I’m fighting for the future of my future kids. I’m fighting for the future of my future grandchildren. So, we must change now.”
Gauff’s actions drew the attention of retired former No. 1 Kim Clijsters.
“Thank you for being a girl that my daughter will learn from and look up to,” Clijsters wrote on Twitter. “I promise that we will keep on teaching our kids the right thing to do so that they can pass it on too. It all starts at home !”