District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser on Friday had “Black Lives Matter” painted on the street that leads to the White House where protesters have been demonstrating following the death of George Floyd.
People were seen painting the words “Black Lives Matter” on Friday morning, June 5, in large block letters in yellow across 16th street, which leads to Lafayette Square and the White House.
“There are people who are craving to be heard and to be seen, and to have their humanity recognized, and we had the opportunity to send that message loud and clear on a very important street in our city,” D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said at a press conference. “And it is that message, and that message is to the American people, that Black Lives Matter black humanity matters, and we as a city raise that up as part of our values as a city,”
The mayor said that the people who painted it were from the D.C. Public Works department.
“There was a dispute this week about whose street this is,” John Falcicchio, chief of staff for Bowser, a Democrat, said earlier in a tweet. “Mayor Bowser wanted to make it abundantly clear that this is DC’s street and to honor demonstrators who (were) peacefully protesting on Monday evening.”
Bowser tweeted later on Friday morning that that particular section of 16th Street has been renamed “Black Lives Matter Plaza”. A video showing a street sign being put up to that effect was shared by the Mayor.
The section of 16th street in front of the White House is now officially “Black Lives Matter Plaza”. pic.twitter.com/bbJgAYE35b
— Mayor Muriel Bowser (@MayorBowser) June 5, 2020
President Donald Trump slammed Bowser Friday afternoon, tweeting, “The incompetent Mayor of Washington, D.C., @MayorBowser, who’s budget is totally out of control and is constantly coming back to us for ‘handouts’, is now fighting with the National Guard, who saved her from great embarrassment…over the last number of nights. If she doesn’t treat these men and women well, then we’ll bring in a different group of men and women!”
Meanwhile, the official D.C. chapter of the Black Lives Matter Global Network, has said in a tweet that painting Black Lives Matter on the street was merely an empty gesture by Bowser.
“This is a performative distraction from real policy changes. Bowser has consistently been on the wrong side of BLMDC history. This is to appease white liberals while ignoring our demands. Black Lives Matter means defund the police. @emilymbadgersay it with us,” the account tweeted.
More photos below.
Credit: Linda Ikeji