San Francisco Mayor London Breed recently spoke with Vogue about certain white progressives involved in the recent demonstrations following the death of George Floyd, and did not have very nice things to say.
Breed stated that while she’s happy more white Americans are now supportive of the Black Lives Matter movement — recent polling shows upwards of 60% of white Americans support the protests and calls for police reform — she has “a real problem with the takeover of the movement by white people.”
“I want people to respect the opinions and feelings of Black people and allow us to decide what is in our best interest,” Breed told Vogue. “I talk about the plan to reduce the police budget and reallocate those resources to the African American community, and a large number of non-Blacks reached out to tell me what I should do for the Black community. Then, they say what their community deserves because of their challenges as well. That really bothered me. The Black community [of San Francisco] is capable of speaking for ourselves and deciding what’s in our best interest.”
Polling from the Pew Research Center has shown that just 22% of African-Americans want police funding “decreased a lot,” with the overwhelming majority favoring small decreases, no change, or even increases. Breed’s proposal to reallocate some funding was met with pushback from some white progressives who accused her of not going far enough. This prompted protests at Breed’s home, protests she was not happy about.
“The people who came out to my home last time, they were all white and wearing masks and walking with these ‘firework sticks’ down the street chanting ‘Black Lives Matter!'” she said. “But then they get to my house and start shooting these fireworks off and aiming them at my window and banging on the gate and calling me names to come outside. It was like, what? In the projects, when you come to somebody’s house, you are coming to get your butt beat. Because I will come out and throw some grits on you if you don’t back up!”