Hundreds in Madison gathered at the Wisconsin State Capitol Thursday for another night of Black Lives Matter protests.

Earlier on Thursday, over ninety cars drove in a caravan led by community organization Freedom Inc., according to Wisconsin Public Radio coverage. They stopped at Madison School Board President Gloria Reyes’ house to demand funding for programs which support minority students. By 9 p.m., a crowd of over 200 had gathered at the steps of the Capitol.

Youth organizers led the nighttime protest, and for much of the night the crowd stayed on the steps, chanting and listening to protestors share their stories. They had a large spread of food, plus water, medical supplies and other resources on hand.

After a few hours they started to march around the Capitol, but this march took a turn down East Washington Ave.

The protest marched down East Washington, turned left onto Livingston St., turned left again onto Blount St., and soon made it back onto East Washington and up to the Capitol.

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Several times, the protest stopped as agitators unassociated with the youth organizers, who had a megaphone, attempted to steer the protest down different streets and organizers reaffirmed the peaceful foundation of the protest.

“I don’t want to see anyone out here getting hurt,” one organizer said. “We are trying to make a peaceful protest, we are trying to make a statement. If that’s not why you’re out here, go home.”

The agitators made it to the front of the protest, but the organizers dispersed themselves throughout the crowd and told everyone to reunite back at the Lady Liberty statue in front of the Capitol. Then, they apologized for letting the agitators steer the protest away from their original plans and promised to stay organized and united in the future.

One of the organizers told the crowd the only way they could guarantee everyone’s safety was by staying together and staying at the Capitol — young people and children had attended, and they had no intention of putting those vulnerable in danger. Especially because they didn’t know the intentions of the other group — they could have been alt-right and dangerous, one organizer said.

“We cannot afford to put our Black skin in front of the KKK,” the organizer said. “What we cannot afford is to have another Tony Robinson in our streets.”

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Back at the Capitol, protestors chanted “This is not a riot, this is a revolution,” “Black lives matter,” and the names of black people killed by police, such as George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony Robinson and Sandra Bland.

One protestor implored the crowd to sign petitions, donate to bail funds, spread the word and to support local Black businesses.

“You want to make local change?” the protestor asked. “You want to make national change? You want to make global change? Start in your own city.”

One of the organizers said since high schools don’t teach a lot of Black history, it’s up to everyone to learn it themselves. They told everyone to read Black scholars like Angela Davis and Malcolm X when they get home. The protestor said it’s upsetting Black students have to educate themselves on their own history.

At midnight, the protestors gathered in a circle around the Capitol stairs and sang “Happy Birthday” for Breonna Taylor, a Black woman killed by police in her own apartment back in March. Today would have been her 27th birthday.

The protest dispersed around 1 a.m. Organizers said they’ll be back Friday for another peaceful protest.

“It feels like the world is ending every day,” one of the organizers said “So if I’m still out here, you better be too.”