1,500 protest at Mall of America: “While you’re on your shopping spree, Black people cannot breathe”

December 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us


December 20, 2014. Demonstrators protesting the rampant police murder of Black people in the USA filled the rotunda of the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minn. The action was organized by Black Lives Matter Minneapolis. News reports said as many as 1,500 participated in the protest.

This protest came at the height of the Christmas shopping season at the second largest shopping mall in America. The protest forced certain parts of the mall to be closed.

The cops gave a final warning to disperse after 30 minutes then police in in riot gear began clearing the rotunda. At this point protesters staged a die-in. People also rallied outside the mall. Some 25 people were arrested.

The huge rotunda of the mall echoed with the protesters’ chants, including: “Black Lives Matter,” “No Justice, No Shopping,” “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot,” and “While you’re on your shopping spree, Black people cannot breathe” —referring to the murder of Eric Garner in Staten Island, NY who was choked to death by an NYPD cop.

People also chanted, "That's why we're angry, that's why we're here. Santa won't see Tamir this year!" — referring to 12-year-old Tamir Rice who was recently shot dead by a Cleveland cop because he was playing with a toy gun.

One of the organizers with Black Lives Matter, Michael McDowell, said, "We will continue the protests. We plan on turning this moment into a movement, and we will not be stopped."

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