A Black Lives Mater street mural is underway in New York City right in front of Trump Tower. According to NPR, work crews blocked off the road so activists could begin painting the phrase in yellow letters on Thursday morning (July 9). New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio proposed the idea last month, which Donald Trump condemned as a “symbol of hate.”
“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,” the POTUS tweeted on July 1.
“This will further antagonize New York’s Finest, who LOVE New York & vividly remember the horrible BLM chant, ‘Pigs In A Blanket, Fry ‘Em Like Bacon,’” he continued. “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 responded to Trump’s criticism on Twitter, writing, “Black people BUILT 5th Ave and so much of this nation. Your ‘luxury’ came from THEIR labor, for which they have never been justly compensated. We are honoring them. The fact that you see it as denigrating your street is the definition of racism.”
The New York City mayor also recently unveiled the city’s new budget plan, which reallocates $1 billion from the police’s $6 billion annual budget to education and social services.
“We’re reducing the size of the NYPD, we’re reducing overtime, we’re moving some of the functions NYPD does now — they will be replaced by civilians handling those functions who can do them better and we’re going to take that money and put it into youth initiatives,” de Blasio told MSNBC.
“It’s an important message to the whole nation,” he added about the mural that’s being painted in front of Trump’s skyscraper. “...Obviously, we want the president to hear it because he’s never shown respect for those three words... We have to make it come alive today so we’re going to make it really clear to the president, it’s going to be right outside his doorstep.”
See some video of the mural being painted below.