MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges’ planned comments at a Martin Luther King Jr. Day event were interrupted on Monday by protestors.
Video posted by the group Black Liberation Front shows Betsy Hodges at the podium at the Monday night event, which was taking place in Martin Luther King, Jr. Park on Nicollet Avenue and 40th Street South.
As Hodges was at the podium, a number of other people joined her on stage, shouting “If Jamar don’t get it, shut it down.”
A woman, identified by both the Black Liberation Front and Black Lives Matter Minneapolis as “Aisha,” addressed the gathered audience with a bullhorn.
“She is a hypocrite,” she said. “Don’t you dare stand here and try to say that you stand for MLK when she’s the same one who beat us. When she’s the same one who condoned the officers to beat me.”
According to Black Lives Matter Minneapolis, Aisha was among those protesting at the Minneapolis Police Department’s 4th Precinct. The group says she was “brutalized” along with others during those protests, which sprang up following the fatal officer-involved shooting of Jamar Clark.
Aisha continued to speak on the bullhorn, shouting at Hodges “You do not stand for black lives. Get off the stage, get off. You will not speak today.”
At that point, Hodges left the podium. A spokesperson for her office said that Hodges was informed about the protesters prior to them converging on the stage. The spokesperson said that, even though event organizers were trying to remove them from the stage, Hodges said they should be allowed to express themselves.
After the protesters left the program continued with the rest of the speakers. Hodges’ office said the mayor stayed for the entire program and met with other attendants of the program after its conclusion.
Hodges’ Twitter account featured this quote Tuesday morning: