MPD arrests at least 9 BLM protesters on H st/BLM Plaza

Video of arrests and assaults by MPD 4 min 21 sec from DC Media Group and Kate Kanterell raw clips

On the 7th of July, some kind of minor skirmish on Black Lives Matter Plaza was used by MPD as an excuse to pounce on and arrest several Black Lives Matter protesters. From there matters escalated, and police were suspected of provoking fights to "sting" protesters. H st ended up blocked off by cops again, only to be effectively back in protester hands by sunset.

Many times cops have conquered H st by force and violence, not once have they been able to sustain the resources to hold the street, and it is even more difficult to simultaniously hold a street against protesters while opening it to motor traffic. Any road open to traffic is vulnerable to marches and to bicycle cavalry strikes. To allow traffic only by motor vehicle violates the city's laws concerning bicycles (considered traffic) and also fails to pre-empt "batmobile" lockdowns using old cars to sieze and hold space in the street. On September 27, 2019, DC police were not successful despite a very determined attempt in preventing not only car blockades but a boat blockade too from being deployed in the climate-oriented "Shut Down DC" protests.

Mayor Bowser is probably motivated to launch these police attacks by the "White House Problem" that divides DC in half at 16th st for wealthy car commuters, combined with last week's Phase II reopening. When the Secret Service closed Penn Ave and E st back in the 1990's, that cut all routes across the White House between Constitution Ave and H st. Severe traffic jams resulted and were not resolved until H st, I st, L st, and M st were all made one-way streets.

The May 30th decision of Secret Service to wall off Lafayette Square after the battles of May 29 drove Trump into his bunker forced protesters onto H st, which is a two-way pair with I st, one street going each way. The size of the protests led to 16th st being occupied all the way back to K st and sometimes beyond. The effect was to (once again due to White House decisionmaking) cut all commuter routes across the White House area from Constitution Ave all the way to K st, basically cutting downtown in half. As of the moment there are simply not enough businesses open for this to be a major traffic jam maker, but surely the Mayor hopes to reopen all of the city at some point in the future. This sets up a race: will the coronavirus or police brutality and murder be stopped first?

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