Renée Deemer is a photojournalist and portrait photographer currently pursuing a master's degree in the Multimedia, Photography and Design program at S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.
Marching for 40 days straight can result in sore feet, dehydration and doubts, but also a renewed sense of community, self-reflection, and maybe most importantly, a sense of purpose and social change.
The murder of George Floyd on May 25, 2020 sparked a new round of outrage and demonstrations across the country and world, demanding accountability for police brutality against people of color.
In Syracuse, New York, a new and nimble grassroots social justice group formed within days to create a visible and vocal presence with the goal to march for racial justice for 40 consecutive days.
Mainstream media coverage tends to portray demonstrators as a monolith. However, each person who takes the initiative to publicly protest does so with a unique background, impetus and hopes. Their individuality intersects with others' to make a unified force, but each individual is a force in themselves.