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Mayor Muriel Bowser returned to the national spotlight Monday evening, speaking at the opening night of the Democratic National Convention. With the “Black Lives Matter” street mural as her backdrop, Bowser spoke against Donald Trump’s crackdown on peaceful protesters as she introduced the family members of George Floyd.
“We can’t just paint those words behind me. We can’t just say those words. We have to live those words,” Bowser said. “We have to undo the laws and systems that have codified racism for far too long.” (Watch her entire pre-recorded speech here.)
As Bowser spoke, some D.C. residents took to Twitter to remind everyone of the local police department’s treatment of protesters. On Thursday night, Metropolitan Police Department officers kettled and pepper sprayed dozens of protesters in Adams Morgan. The police ultimately arrested 41 protesters on offenses related to felony rioting and assaulting a police officer. An MPD photo shows street tagging and a sign on fire. This would not be the first time this summer MPD officers used a legally dubious police tactic to control protesters.
“Mayor Bowser is attempting to call out Trump’s treatment of protestors to distract from hers,” tweeted the local chapter of Black Lives Matter. The group retweeted multiple posts throughout the night criticizing the mayor.
The group also pointed out that the city paved over protesters’ own mural at Black Lives Matter Plaza. Protesters added “Defund The Police” to the end of the mayor’s “Black Lives Matter” mural. The full message read “Black Lives Matter = Defund the Police.”
The local addendum intended to let Bowser know that she cannot just paint “Black Lives Matter” on the street and that she needed to reduce MPD’s budget and redirect money to alternatives to policing. Bowser ultimately pushed back against modest cuts the Council made to MPD’s budget.
—Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? firstname.lastname@example.org)
CITY DESK LINKS, by Amanda Michelle Gomez (tips? email@example.com)
As of Aug. 18, D.C. reported two deaths and 52 positive cases of COVID-19 bringing the total number of people to 599 and 13,325 respectively. [EOM]
DC Health is hiring more contact tracers. [Post]
A D.C. resident sues D.C. for clearing protesters’ encampments. [DCist]
LOOSE LIPS LINKS, by Mitch Ryals (tips? firstname.lastname@example.org)
How to make sure your ballot is counted. [DCist]
Virginia Sen. L. Louise Lucas is among those charged with conspiracy to remove a Confederate monument. Some see the charges against the Democratic senator as politically motivated. [Politico]
Special legislative session in Virginia to focus on the coronavirus and police reform. [WTOP]
Roy McGrath resigns as Gov. Larry Hogan’s chief of staff following pushback on a six-figure severance payment. [CBS]
YOUNG & HUNGRY LINKS, by Laura Hayes (tips? email@example.com)
Emilie’s on Capitol Hill loses its second executive chef this summer. [WCP]
A brick courtyard beer garden from Church Hall opens in Georgetown tomorrow. [WCP]
The Eleanor is pressing pause in NoMa. [PoPville]
How Senator Kamala Harris is bringing food justice to the democratic ticket. [Civil Eats]
ARTS LINKS, by Kayla Randall (tips? firstname.lastname@example.org)
A collective of local artists and advocates has formed The Black Artist Coalition, which will support and advocate for Black people in the theater world. [DC Theatre Scene]
For the first time, UkeFest goes virtual this year. [WAMU]
How the 1984 album Sons of Ethiopia is now finding new audiences. [Washingtonian]
SPORTS LINKS, by Kelyn Soong (tips? email@example.com)
The Caps look to stay alive in the playoffs tonight in Game 4 against the Islanders, and the pressure will be on second-year head coach Todd Reirden, who faces another early postseason exit. [WCP]
The Braves beat the Nats on Monday, but Juan Soto got the better of Atlanta pitcher Will Smith. [Federal Baseball]
Mike Thibault tried to warn everyone that the defending WNBA champion Mystics would struggle this season. And they are. [Post]
Celebrate the anniversary of suffrage with #19SuffrageStories, a joint project between the Smithsonian, the National Archives, and the Library of Congress.
Learn about the history of the Supreme Court’s group photograph in All Together for the Camera.