A moral victory: what the acquittal of the Colston Four means for future protests – The Guardian

Last week, four Black Lives Matter protesters who tore down of a statue in Bristol of the notorious slave trader Edward Colston were acquitted of all charges. The four left Bristol crown court in jubilant mood, having argued in their defence that they were on ‘the right side of history’.

Sage Willoughby, one of the four defendants, tells Nosheen Iqbal that the day the statue came down is all a blur for him, but that he knows what he did was right. All four of the defendants accepted their involvement in pulling down the statue, but argued successfully that they had acted in a just way, such was the egregious nature of Colston’s involvement in the slave trade, and that the statue’s continued existence in the centre of Bristol was grossly offensive.

The Guardian’s Damien Gayle was in court for the trial and describes a case in which David Olusoga, an eminent historian of slavery, was called for the defence. But the response to the verdict has been polarised, with many leading Conservatives criticising the outcome as a ‘vandals charter’.

Sage Willoughby, Jake Skuse, Milo Ponsford and Rhian Graham celebrate after receiving a not guilty verdict at Bristol crown court

Photograph: Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images

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A moral victory: what the acquittal of the Colston Four means for future protests – The Guardian

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