A memorial service in honour of George Floyd was held on Thursday in Minneapolis and Rev. Al Sharpton’s sermon stood out.
Floyd lost his life in the hands of an officer who pressed his knee against his neck sparking protests all over US.
On Thursday, Sharpton said he visited the scene of the incident and it made him realise that blacks have been oppressed for over 400 years.
"When I stood at that spot, the reason it got to me is that George Floyd's story has been the story of black folks.
"Because ever since 401 years ago, the reason we could never be who we wanted and dreamed of being is you kept your knee on our neck,” he said.
Adding: “What happened to Floyd happens every day in this country — in education, in health services and in every area of American life. It’s time for us to stand up in George’s name and say, ’Get your knee off our necks.’ ”
Sharpton called for immediate change announcing a new march in August to push for reforms.
“In one era, we had to fight slavery. Another era we had to fight Jim Crow, another era we dealt with voting rights. This is the era to deal with policing and criminal justice.
“We need to go back to Washington and stand up — black, white, Latino, Arab — in the shadows of Lincoln and tell them this is the time to stop this,” he remarked.
Police have made a total of nearly 10,000 arrests in the country in recent days, according to an estimate reported by American media.
Other arrests were reported Thursday evening in New York among the protesters defying the curfew effective at 8:00 p.m.