UNITED STATES−The White House was on lockdown for about an hour on the evening of Friday, May 29, as violent protests erupted in major cities across the U.S.
The protests were in response to the death of a black man named George Floyd who was in handcuffs on May 25, in Minneapolis, Minnesota at the hands of a white police officer. Video footage shows the policeman kneeling on Floyd’s throat. The police officer and three others on the force have since been removed.
Initially, the violence was contained in Minneapolis. Violent protests took to the streets. They were throwing objects at police officers, looting, and catching fire to buildings. Protests ensued in many major cities across the U.S. including Washington D.C.
The protestors approached the White House with President Trump still inside. Some protestors attempted to break down the barricade set up by secret service that was reportedly being held shut with handcuffs. Some news reporters present were locked in the West Wing of the White House.
Video footage shows protestors pushing, shoving, and throwing items such as bricks and firecrackers at the U.S. Secret Service agents.
The President also spoke out against the violence in Minneapolis. President Trump Tweeted “When the looting starts, the shooting starts.” The Tweet was immediately flagged by Twitter accusing the President of “glorifying violence.” President Trump defended himself saying his message was “misconstrued.” “Frankly,” the President explained, “It means, when there’s looting, people get shot and they die.”
President Trump offered his condolences to the family of George Floyd. “The family of George [Floyd] is entitled to justice, “the President Tweeted, “and the people of Minnesota are entitled to live in safety.”
These remarks were made following the first protest. Protests in downtown Los Angeles, Atlanta, Georgia, Eugene, Oregon, and other cities that caused a great deal of damage have been reported including an NYPD vehicle that was set ablaze.
“Our country allows for peaceful protests, but there is no reason for violence. I’ve seen our citizens unify & take care of one another through COVID19 & we can’t stop now. My deepest condolences to the family of George Floyd. As a nation, let’s focus on peace, prayers & healing.”- First Lady, Melania Trump