Ayyyeee… What’s Goodie Everyone. So I got some tea and it involves Donald Trump and Black Lives Matter Movement plus the streets.
Donald Trump on Wednesday said painting “Black Lives Matter” on New York’s Fifth Avenue would be “a symbol of hate” and wind up “denigrating” the street outside Trump Tower, as he ratcheted up objections to a plan that he suggested the city’s police could stop.
The comments Trump made in morning tweets, were his latest volley directed at New York Mayor Bill de Blasio (D), who last week ordered that the tribute to the Black Lives Matter movement be painted in large yellow letters in a move designed in part to antagonize the president. De Blasio responded to Trump’s tweets Wednesday by calling them “the definition of racism.”
In the tweets Trump decried a move by New York officials to shift about $1 billion from the city’s police budget in a bid to respond to calls to “defund the police” that resonated following the recent deaths of Floyd and other African Americans in police custody.
“NYC is cutting Police $’s by ONE BILLION DOLLARS, and yet the @NYCMayor is going to paint a big, expensive, yellow Black Lives Matter sign on Fifth Avenue, denigrating this luxury Avenue,” Trump tweeted. “This will further antagonize New York’s Finest, who LOVE New York. . . . Maybe our GREAT Police, who have been neutralized and scorned by a mayor who hates & disrespects them, won’t let this symbol of hate be affixed to New York’s greatest street. Spend this money fighting crime instead!”
De Blasio fired back on Twitter less than two hours later, stating that Trump does not understand that “Black people BUILT 5th Ave and so much of this nation” and highlighting that the tribute to the movement would be painted near Trump Tower, which houses Trump’s company and one of his homes.
“Your ‘luxury’ came from THEIR labor, for which they have never been justly compensated,” de Blasio said. “We are honoring them. The fact that you see it as denigrating your street is the definition of racism.”
De Blasio also took issue with Trump’s appeal to New York police, noting that “NY’s Finest are now a majority people of color.”
“They already know Black Lives Matter,” de Blasio said. “There is no ‘symbol of hate’ here. Just a commitment to truth. Only in your mind could an affirmation of people’s value be a scary thing.”
Plans for the New York tribute to Black Lives Matter follows a move last month by Washington Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) to rename a street in front of the White House “Black Lives Matter Plaza” and paint the slogan in massive yellow letters.
Trump has accused a prominent Black Lives Matter member of treason for comments made in a television interview, and in his tweets this week and previous, Trump referenced a chant of “Pigs In A Blanket, Fry ’Em Like Bacon,” which he attributed to Black Lives Matter members and said was directed at police.
In explaining de Blasio’s decision to paint the tribute to the movement outside Trump Tower, a de Blasio spokeswoman pointed to Trump.
“The president is a disgrace to the values we cherish in New York City,” spokeswoman Julia Arredondo said in a statement last Thursday. “He can’t run or deny the reality we are facing, and any time he wants to set foot in the place he claims is his hometown, he should be reminded Black Lives Matter.”
The movement against racial profiling and police violence has played a prominent role in demonstrations for which Trump has expressed disdain, despite his claims that he supports peaceful protests.