Washington D.C. renamed part of a street near the White House as “Black Lives Matter Plaza,” as protests over the death of George Floyd continue.
Democratic Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser commissioned the renaming Friday morning. (RELATED: John James Releases New Ad In Wake Of George Floyd’s Death: ‘Politicians Will Never Solve These Problems’)
D.C. renames part of 16th Street near the White House as “Black Lives Matter Plaza.” pic.twitter.com/HJW748fmCY
— Jim Lokay FOX 5 (@LokayFOX5) June 5, 2020
— Muriel Bowser #StayHomeDC (@MurielBowser) June 5, 2020
However, the local Black Lives Matter chapter rejected the gesture, calling it a “distraction” from the organization’s stated goal of defunding police departments.
“This is performative and a distraction from her active counter organizing to our demands to decrease the police budget and invest in the community,” they wrote on Twitter. “Black Lives Matter means Defund the police.”
This is performative and a distraction from her active counter organizing to our demands to decrease the police budget and invest in the community. Black Lives Matter means Defund the police. @FenitN @wusa9 @ABC7News @IGD_News @news https://t.co/8VUnHOBtsg
— BlackLivesMatter DC (@DMVBlackLives) June 5, 2020
Protests have sprung up across the country over the past week in response to Floyd’s death after four Minnesota police officers were seen on video pinning Floyd to the ground ahead of his death. All of the officers involved have been fired and charged in relation to Floyd’s death.
Some of the protests have turned violent, including in Washington D.C., where rioters set fire to historic St. John’s Episcopal Church last weekend, and looted businesses throughout the city. (RELATED: 15 People Died In The Protests And Riots Following George Floyd’s Death. Here’s Who They Are)
Floyd’s death has also led some activists to call for defunding the police, including former Hillary Clinton press secretary Brian Fallon, who now heads the progressive legal advocacy group Demand Justice.