Saturday’s chaotic Trump-Party “Million MAGA March” Sunday is the pastor of a historic DC church whose Black Lives Matter sign was torn and burned in the street.
The pastor of the historic DC church, whose Black Lives Matter board was torn and burned down the street, responded to Sunday’s chaotic Trump-Party “Million MAGAZE March,” saying the act of violence is “reminiscent of cross-burns”.
“We are resilient people who have trusted in God through slavery and the underground railroad, Jim Crow and the Civil Rights Movement, and now that we are facing a clear rise in white supremacy,” wrote Reverend Ianther M. Mills of the United Methodist Church in Asbury.
“Last night, protesters who attended MAGA gatherings tore down our Black Lives Matter board and literally burned it down the street. The burning of the board was recorded by Twitter. It hurt especially when I saw our name, Asbury, in flames. To me, it reminded me of the burning of the cross. Seeing this action in a video, I was outraged and determined to fight the evil that was lifting his ugly head. We were so confident that no one would ever damage the church, but it happened. “
Several media outlets and social media entries have identified those responsible as members of the far-right Proud Boys – the Southern Poverty Law Center designates an organization’s hate group.
The proud boys and other white supremacists are burning a black life signal from the United Methodist Church in Asbury, DC, while being irrigated with lighter fluid to increase the flames. The purpose of this public action is to terrorize and message black people. pic.twitter.com/0YNsTDaVqF
– Kristen Clarke (@KristenClarkeJD) December 13, 2020
The metropolitan African Methodist Episcopal Church was also targeted and a sign destroyed.
DC police on Sunday confirmed to the WTOP that the attacks are being investigated as possible hate crimes.
“We take these crimes seriously and are currently investigating them as potential hate crimes,” a spokesman said. “If anyone has any information, please call 202-727-9099 or send 50411.”
THE tweet seriesDC Mayor Muriel Bowser said, “DC’s faith-based organizations are at the heart of our community and give hope in the face of darkness. Love and inclusiveness embody our DC values. An attack on them is an attack on all of us.
“Over the weekend, we saw hate coercion that tried to tear us apart by destruction and intimidation. We will not let this happen and we will remain strong and united with love. “
At a press conference at Black Lives Matter Plaza on Sunday, speakers with BLM DC voiced harsh criticism against DC police for the rally and for Bowser and his administration.
– Let’s make it clear. Our mayor and police allowed white supremacists to tear and destroy property from a black church, burn it on the ground, stand back and watch as it happens. The DC police don’t keep us safe. Muriel Bowser doesn’t keep us safe. Said one of the speakers.
“It happens when you ignore fascism and racism,” said April Goggans, BLM DC organizer.
Nee Nee Taylor, co-organizer of Black Lives Matter DC, said the area should be a safe place to gather.
“We believe the Black Lives Matter Plaza should be a safe place for DC and we should be able to come together to demonstrate our commitment to racial and racial justice.”
WTOP Alejandro Alvarez on Saturday reported that the Proud Boys are “in effect”.
During the demonstration, fighting broke out between pro-Trump and anti-Trump protesters.
Four people have been stabbed and are in a life-threatening condition, one of them an officer, DC police told the WTOP.
Police arrested 33 people for a variety of crimes, including an attack on a police officer, a simple assault, riots, possession of a prohibited weapon, and crossing police borders, DC police said.
Gatherings of mostly exposed Donald Trump loyalists were meant to be a show of strength, barely two days before the Electoral College would convene, and Joe Biden would be officially elected president.
Trump, whose term expires on Jan. 20, refuses to agree while insisting on unfounded fraud claims rejected by state and federal courts and, on Friday, the Supreme Court.
WTOP Valerie Bonk, Matt Small and Luke Garrett contributed to the report.
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