Law enforcement officials in Washington, D.C., arrested two pro-life activists on Saturday after the activists wrote “black pre-born lives matter” in chalk outside a Planned Parenthood building.
The two activists, who were flanked by numerous supporters, were approached by law enforcement as they started to write on the sidewalk.
“Hey folks, I need to tell you that if you continue chalking, you’re going to be placed under arrest for defacing property,” the officer said. “I’ve given you you’re warning. You understand that, right?”
“If you continue chalking, you’re going to be placed under arrest,” the officer continued.
At that point the two activists continued to write on the sidewalk in chalk.
The officer then motioned to other officers to place the two activists under arrest.
DC police arrest peaceful pro-life activists who wrote on the sidewalk in chalk "black pre-born lives matter" outside a Planned Parenthood. pic.twitter.com/oamI4u9Fhs
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) August 1, 2020
Other activists who were there told the police officers that pro-life activists do this every Saturday. The activists say that the area of the sidewalk that they were writing on was public property.
The Metropolitan Police Department has not yet issued a statement about the arrests.
“So we are peacefully gathered here in front of Planned Parenthood in Washington, D.C., and we have students and African American protesters that simply have gathered and we began to write on the sidewalk with chalk, as many of these young people do all the time ‘black pre-born lives matter,’ and all of the sudden they’ve committed a crime,” the activist said in reference to the arrests. “They do this every week. I come down here routinely to pray. I see people and they’ve never arrested anybody before, but today they’re arresting people just because we have decided peaceably assemble and to stand for black pre-born lives.”
“And so, what we’re saying today in the spirit of Frederick Douglas, who was a great abolitionist, there’s a new movement of abolitionists,” the activist continued. “This isn’t the abolition of slavery but this is the abolition of what we know is the greatest civil rights in our culture today and that is for pre-born lives.”
The move by law enforcement to arrest the peaceful protesters comes after prosecutors in D.C. dropped felony rioting charges against numerous people who allegedly participated in riots in late May.
“Dozen[s] of people arrested over the weekend when mass protests in the District erupted in mayhem were released from custody Monday after appearing in court on an array of charges, including burglary, destruction of property and violating a municipal curfew,” The Washington Post reported at the start of June. “Although many of those arrested were charged by police with felony rioting, that charge was dropped by prosecutors in most cases.”
The subject of abortion in the black community has gained notable attention in recent months and celebrities have started using their platforms to bring attention to the issue.
One notable example is rapper Kanye West, who tweeted on Friday, “Over 22,500,000 black babies have been aborted over the past 50 years.”
Over 22,500,000 black babies have been aborted over the past 50 years.
— ye (@kanyewest) July 31, 2020