New ruling bars Blacks Lives Matter protests at Mall of America
A new ruling in Minneapolis has barred three Black Lives Matter activists from demonstrating at the Mall of America this holiday season.
According to local news station KARE11, MOA filed a temporary restraining order against three protestors on Monday in anticipation of a demonstration that was being organized for this afternoon. In the restraining order, the MOA claims that the mall and its tenants suffered “irreparable harm,” a reduction in sales, and “incalculable loss” when a similar demonstration was held last year on December 20.
After Hennepin County Judge Karen Janisch heard both protestors and mall representatives on Monday, she ruled on Tuesday in favor of the Mall, which prohibits demonstrations on its premises.
“This case represents important issues regarding the rights of a private property owner over the control of its premises and the desire of individuals to protest activities in a highly visible location,” Janisch wrote according to Star Tribune.
Though owners have a right to protect their property, owners have taken different stances on how to weigh the value of their private property against demonstrations for the dignity of black lives. Following the Baltimore Uprising, many protestors were condemned for destruction of a local CVS following the news of Freddie Gray. However, in 2013, in Oakland, CA, after a downtown cafe window was broken during a demonstration following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the killing of Trayvon Martin, one owner had a different response:
“Our window was smashed on Saturday,” owner of Awaken Cafe Cortt Dunlap told the Huffington Post. “When we came in on Monday morning, we watched as journalists and passersby took photo after photo after photo of our broken window. But what we really should be talking about is not the window. We decided to put the focus back on what really matters.”
For Cortt, that meant posting a sign indicting our broken criminal justice system, which was at the heart of the protests, and remains central to the Black Lives Matter protests that have happened in the years since, including at MOA.
Though there was no way to count how many demonstrators were at the protest last year—it was estimated to be hundreds according to KARE11 reports—Black Lives Matter Minneapolis’ facebook event had 3,000 people confirm attendance.
— Adrienne Broaddus (@abroaddus) December 20, 2014
Despite the ruling, protestors still aim to demonstrate.
Photo credit: Wikipedia Commons