Oprah Winfrey puts her Breonna Taylor O Magazine cover on 26 BILLBOARDS across Louisville

Oprah Winfrey added 26 Billboards of Breonna Taylor across Louisville

Winfrey demands justice for Breonna Taylor erecting billboards across Louisville, Kentucky as a form of protest

As a way to demand justice for Breonna Taylor and amplify her story and the voices of Black females and femmes that are victims of police brutality, Oprah Winfrey erected 26 billboards across Louisville, Kentucky. All the signboards feature the September cover of ‘O’, The Oprah Magazine, dedicated to the memory of the 26-year-old emergency medical technician (EMS), killed in her own home during a “no-knock” drug search by Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) officers Jonathan Mattingly, Brett Hankison, and Myles Cosgrove on March 13, 2020.

For the first time in the 20 years history of Winfrey‘s magazine, the worldwide known talk show host, actress, t.v producer, media executive, and philanthropist, gave up the cover to feature a portrait of Taylor created by artist Alexis Franklin. “She was just like me. She was just like you. And like everyone who dies unexpectedly, she had plans. Plans for a future filled with responsibility and work and friends and laughter” wrote Winfrey in her column available in the digital version of the media publication. ”I think about Breonna Taylor often. She was the same age as the two daughter-girls from my school in South Africa who’ve been quarantining with Stedman and me since March,” she revealed.

While remembering Taylor‘s story and her tragic death, Winfrey also shared her reasons to use her magazine as a call to action. “What I know for sure: We can’t be silent. We have to use whatever megaphone we have to cry for justice. And that is why Breonna Taylor is on the cover of O magazine. I cry for justice in her name,” she added.

The billboard image shows the portrait of Taylor wearing her EMS uniform, and a request to charge the officers who murder the aspiring nurse: “Demand that the police involved in killing Breonna Taylor be arrested and charged.” The poster also includes a quote from Oprah: ”If you turn a blind eye to racism, you become an accomplice to it,” and invites everyone who wants justice to visit Until Freedom, an organization supported by the Taylor family and co-founded by Tamika D. Mallory, Mysonne Linen, Angelo Pinto, and Linda Sarsour.

Winfrey also shared a video with images of the poster signs while recollecting the last time she spoke with Taylor‘s mother. “The last time I spoke to Breonna Taylor’s mom, Tamika Palmer, she was having a particularly bad day dealing with the loss of her daughter. She told me, ’I can’t stop seeing her face. Her smile. It’s what I miss most about her…I’m still waiting for her to come through the door,’” she says.

”Everybody who’s lost a loved one knows that feeling. For every mother and father whose child is out in the world, imagine getting a call in the middle of the night that your daughter has been shot in her apartment. And then you find out the people who killed her were police officers who should never have been there in the first place. What would you want to happen? Would you be content to hear five months later ’there’s an investigation?’ And that no one has been held accountable for shooting your innocent daughter multiple times and letting her life bleed out? If not for the coronavirus, I would be out in the streets marching with the Black Lives Matter protesters. These 26 billboards, one for every year of Breonna’s life, are my offering. My form of protest. We can’t be silent. We have to use whatever megaphone we have to cry for justice.”

As reported by Oprah Mag, the billboards are placed around the city of Louisville, including downtown, Interstate 65, the East End commuter route, and western Louisville.

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