Following news that Black Lives Matter secretly blew $6 million of donation money on a swanky Southern California mansion, HuffPost has published a damning opinion piece that claims the foundation “was not the sacred cow that it appeared to be.”
“Ferguson tried to warn us,” writes HuffPost Opinion Editor Stephen A. Crockett Jr., in an article entitled “The Business of Black Death and a $6 Million Mansion.”
Crockett recalls the often violent race relations history in Ferguson, Missouri, “where Black people dared not drive once nighttime came” in the tumultuous 1960s.
In 2014, Michael Brown, an unarmed 18-year-old black man, was fatally shot by white Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson, “and the next night, Ferguson was on fire.”
“The protests were as violent as Brown’s killing, and out of the ashes came this message: There would be no more Black death without consequences. You will feel us now,” Crockett writes, adding, “Darren Seals tried to warn us.”
Seals was an outspoken, anti-gun violence, anti-police brutality, Ferguson racial justice activist, who, according to Crockett was trying “to make sense of the financial windfall and the galvanization of Black faces that converged on his city shortly after Brown’s death.”
“BLACK DEATH IS A BUSINESS,” Seals would say.
Seals believed Black Lives Matter as an organization “was nothing more than a money grab with a catchy hashtag used to seize the moment and capitalize on Black pain.”
If the group wasn’t fighting for Ferguson from the beginning, reasoned Seals, why were they all over Ferguson now?
“This Black Lives Matter sh*t is blowing up and as it’s blowing up, you’re not hearing about Mike Brown anymore. … All you’re hearing about is Black Lives Matter now,” Seals said in a videotaped message. “They took the energy away from Ferguson.”
“Cops ain’t stopped killing here since Mike Brown died, and what Black Lives Matter doing about it?” Seals asked. “They just collecting checks. I ain’t heard of them paying for no funerals. I ain’t heard of them starting no programs for the youth, building no center. Nothing. So we back at square one, back where we started. No justice, no nothing.”
In 2016, at just 29 years old, Seals, a factory line worker and hip-hop artist, was found dead of a gunshot wound in his burning car.
💯 #RIPDarrenSeals 👑
— All on one Accord 🇺🇸 (@BlacksOrganize) May 15, 2021
“Ferguson tried to warn us that the Black Lives Matter organization was not the sacred cow that it appeared to be,” Crockett writes. “Since the hashtag’s founding in 2013 by three Black women — Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi — as an answer to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, there have been questions surrounding the money.”
Crawford points out that Cullors went on to head the Black Lives Matter foundation until 2021, and distinguishes it from the Black Lives Matters groups “that aren’t affiliated with the foundation.”
It’s the national foundation, Crawford says, which appears to be “raking in all the money.”
And it is a lot of money.
Following the death of George Floyd in 2020 which sparked numerous, destructive BLM riots, the BLM foundation hauled in more than $90 million in donations, prompting many to wonder where the money has gone.
“And then there was a bombshell dropped earlier this week that the foundation took some $6 million of donation money to secretly buy a mansion,” Crawford writes, noting that in 2021 Cullors reportedly spent $3.2 million on four homes across America.
“What is telling here is that somewhere between the fight for Black lives and the pull of celebrity, things changed, lines got crossed, and accountability and transparency got skewed,” states Crawford.
Cullor claimed negative reporting on the secret mansion was “sexist” and “racist,” claims that Crawford says have become all too common.
“You either fully accept everything happening within the Black Matters Matter Global Network Foundation, which apparently includes filming a cooking show using the mansion’s kitchen, or you are a tool of white supremacy being used to shut down one of the largest Black organizations fighting for Black life,” Crawford writes.
The article by Crawford is one many on social media wish could have been written sooner.
“If @HuffPost had published this story in 2020 its own staff would have destroyed the company,” tweeted Breitbart News Senior Editor-at-Large Joel Pollak.
“If only someone would have predicted this a few years ago…” tweeted another user.
“I am pretty sure almost everyone knew that a year ago,” a third tweeted.
But for others, the article is a welcomed, better-late-than-never surprise from HuffPost.
“Good on HuffPo for reporting this,” a tweeter posted, “even if they are VERY late to the story.”
— Joel Pollak (@joelpollak) April 9, 2022
If only someone would have predicted this a few years ago…
— David Willford (@Dave_Willford) April 9, 2022
I am pretty sure almost everyone knew that a year ago.
— Zaphod Beeblebrox (@AndysCycles) April 9, 2022
Good on HuffPo for reporting this, even if they are VERY late to the story.
— Manservant “Big Mama” Hecubus (@MHecubus) April 9, 2022
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