Law enforcement has seized thousands of masks meant to protest protestors from COVID-19.
Across the nation, people are fighting to end systemic racism. After the death of George Floyd at the hands of former police officer Derek Chauvin, the world has stepped up to combat police violence and institutional racism. Protests have been shaking things up for the last week and, with the looming threat of COVID-19 still in the air, demonstrators are being asked to wear face coverings to protect themselves and the people around them.
In another unsurprising move, several boxes containing thousands of face masks have been seized by police officials for no apparent reason. As explained by the organization shipping the boxes to four different states, it is likely because they were going to be distributed to protestors for free.
According to Huff Post, the Movement for Black Lives spent a lot of money to procure masks for protestors to protect themselves with, but they have been stopped and will not be shipped. The MFBL has been informed that the shipment was seized by law enforcement.
“I just don’t understand it,” said Rene Quinonez of Movement Ink, who produced the masks. “It’s just really blowing my mind. … We’re tired, but we’re going to try to rally some support and figure out how to replace these masks and support the movement. This isn’t a weapon. It’s about safety.”
The masks had sayings over them like “defund police” and “stop killing black people.”
The organization has issued a response to the seizure of the masks.
“It appears they want to ensure that people who protest are susceptible to the same deadly pandemic that they have failed miserably at stopping,” said Chelsea Fuller, a spokesperson for the Movement for Black Lives. “The continued surveillance and disruption of social movements under this administration is as chilling as it is dangerous. It should be roundly condemned.”