FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Washington, DC -- November 18, 2020
RE: MILLION MAGA MARCH
On November 14, 2020, Trump supporters and members of the far-right, neo-fascist, male-only political organization, the Proud Boys, came to Washington, DC, crossing state lines during a global pandemic despite District of Columbia COVID-19 travel restrictions, to demonstrate their support for the defeated presidential candidate in the so-called “Million MAGA March.” DC residents and local progressive activists gathered, socially-distanced and masked, to display solidarity and support for election results that declared Joe Biden the president-elect. Many of the DC residents and local activists have been vocal during the movement for Black liberation and in the wake of the deaths of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd.
Throughout the day, the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) showed camaraderie to the Proud Boys, who lined up to take pictures with and hug members of the MPD. They even conversed unmasked and less than 6 feet apart, despite Mayor Bowser’s Order 2020-080 mandating that individuals wear a mask while outside and within 6 feet of others. Additionally, Mayor Bowser’s Order 2020-081 states that “Anyone coming into Washington, DC from a high-risk state (within the prior 14 days) who was traveling for non-essential activities will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days from their arrival in the District.” The travel restriction list includes 41 states, many of which the Proud Boys came from the day prior, thus not allowing for the 14 day self-quarantine period.
Members of the MPD followed behind the Black liberation activists, as they marched and chanted peacefully, to monitor and harass them, as they have done since the beginning of summer 2020. At approximately 8:15 PM EST on November 14, 2020 at the intersection of 11th Street and H Street NW, the far-right un-masked visitors confronted the local activists. Although MPD was less than a block behind the Black liberation activists, they allowed for violence and chaos to unfold upon the citizens they were sworn to protect — laughing, protecting, and encouraging the Proud Boys who caused verbal and physical harm to the peaceful protestors. The violence and chaos lasted non-stop for at least two minutes, as confirmed by amateur cellphone video recording. During this time, Proud Boys members stabbed three people, leaving one in critical condition. One victim was spared physical harm by the body vest he was wearing. Community medics with the Black liberation activists treated the stab wounds, while MPD would not help and instead laughed and encouraged the violent behavior from the far-right aggressors. In fact, when one far-right thug stabbed a victim, one MPD officer told the victim that he was a “tough guy” and should “deal with it.” MPD did not arrest any of the far-right violent men for these life-threatening assaults.
In response to this weekend’s violence and the silence that has followed, we demand that MPD release the bodycam footage of all officers in the area, specifically Sergeant Gregory Jackson (Badge # S0711). We demand that Mayor Bowser Take responsibility for the lives that were endangered by MPD. Additionally, we demand that MPD release a record of all of the fines issued for noncompliance with the mask mandate, considering COVID-19 cases in the US, and particularly in DC, are spiking and an overwhelming majority of the Trump supporters did not wear masks and disobeyed safety travel restrictions for the District of Columbia.