Black Activist Holds Hunger Strike to Rename Boston Landmark with History of Slavery

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“The hunger fast was particularly grueling, to not eat food for 7 days works on your mind, your spirit and your body in ways you wouldn’t understand…”

Peterson is behind a push for a name change for a historic landmark in Boston, Faneuil Hall.

The landmark, sometimes referred to as the Cradle of Liberty, was once the location for the trade and transport of thousands of human slaves. The owner Peter Faneuil, who donated the building to the city, also owned several slaves himself.

Starting on June 22, 2020, and lasting for seven full days and nights, Peterson went through a wide range of emotions and physical challenges that consisted of severe stomach pains, instances of nausea and severe dehydration. It was not uncommon for many tourists visiting the site during the 168-hour ordeal to see Peterson rallying his cause with a Boycott Faneuil Hall sign wrapped around his neck.

“The hunger fast was particularly grueling, to not eat food for 7 days works on your mind, your spirit and your body in ways you wouldn’t understand,” Peterson said in a July 20 statement to Atlanta Black Star. “At the end I was overjoyed that I had engaged in a protest that brought so much attention to this issue of white supremacy.”

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