An "historic moment" from the George Floyd protests has gone viral showing a young white protester throwing herself between a kneeling African-American man and police.

Peaceful and violent protests have raged for eight days across the US, sparked by the horrific killing of African-American man George Floyd by white police officer Derek Chauvin in Minneapolis.

There have been heated demonstrations in more than 100 cities, which have spiralled into widespread looting, violence and clashes between police and protesters. There have also been officers and civilians killed as the violence continues to escalate.

The unfolding scenes of chaos have ripped apart the veneer of civility in America, but moments of kindness are emerging from the chaos.

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"I will never forget this moment," NCB reporter Shomari Stone wrote on Twitter, sharing a video of the incident on Sunday.

"A young black man jumped the gated barrier in Lafayette Park near the White House. Then a white girl jumped the barrier and put herself between the young man & US Park Police to protect him."

"This makes me cry every time I see it. I'm crying again now," one woman commented on the post.

The girl jumped the barrier and got between the boy and police. Photo / Twitter
The girl jumped the barrier and got between the boy and police. Photo / Twitter
As the pair were shoved back, she put her arms around him. Photo / Twitter
As the pair were shoved back, she put her arms around him. Photo / Twitter

"You're right, but this brave act merits our notice in this terrible moment in our history," another said.

Groups of protesters have been seen stepping out in a similar way at protests around the country as organisers try to calm agitation between crowds and police.

Increasingly violent scenes have played out in front of the White House as authorities tried to quell vandalism of public buildings, as protesters lit fires and wrote anti-police graffiti on protected buildings.

On Tuesday, a group of peaceful protesters was cleared from the White House with tear gas, rubber bullets and horses moments before US President Donald Trump took a photo opportunity nearby where they'd been gathered.