According to Fox News, the City of Minneapolis began removing barriers and trying to reopen the intersection on Thursday, after over a year of the section of street being occupied by protesters.
George Floyd Square, which has been occupied by protesters since the death of George Floyd in May 2020, was “a makeshift shrine and focus of protests” and “a semi-autonomous, pedestrian territory symbolizing community resistance.”
Since the riots in May 2020, Minneapolis has been fighting against rising gun crime and violence. Several shootings have taken place in George Floyd Square, leaving residents fearing for their safety.
A local community group called the Agape Movement was in charge of removing the barriers in hopes of keeping tensions low and not directly involving law enforcement. The barriers were being taken down so that the flow of traffic can continue on the cross streets where George Floyd Square is located.
There was significant pushback as the Agape Movement began removing the barriers with some shouting “No justice, no peace.” Some barriers were replaced by protestors after they had been removed.
— esme murphy (@esmemurphy) June 3, 2021
A candidate for the office of Mayor of Minneapolis, Kate Knuth, tweeted that taking down the barriers was “further injustice.”
The decision to move on reopening George Floyd Square today—without community agreement, consensus, notice, or transparency—is a further injustice in a community calling for transformative change. pic.twitter.com/OUIeCqavEP
— Kate for MPLS Mayor (@kateknuth) June 3, 2021
MSN cited Alfonzo Williams, an ex-gang member in south Minneapolis who helped to start the Agape Movement as saying he was “a little disappointed in how some people acted but excited about the square being open. I know that now we can start getting back to some new normalcy. Right now the community is at a standstill. People are pretty much in jail in their own community. We want everyone to be able to move and be doing things the way they’ve been done.”
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Hayley Tschetter is a reporter with The Minnesota Sun | Star News Network and The College Fix. She graduated with a degree in Communications from the University of Northwestern-St. Paul. Send news tips to [email protected].
Photo “George Floyd Square” by Lorie Shaull. CC BY-SA 2.0.