New York City Closes Part of Fifth Avenue at Trump Tower for Black Lives Matter Mural

New York City has closed off part of Fifth Avenue, at Trump Tower, for Black Lives Matter mural painting on the street. According to NBC News, city workers closed the area of 56th and 57th streets. The mural was announced weeks back, and was originally scheduled to take place before Independence Day, but was postponed.

President Trump has been vocally critical of the move, calling it a "symbol of hate," and stating that it was "denigrating" to Fifth Avenue, which is widely known for luxury apartments and shopping areas. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio responded to Trump's criticism by tweeting, "Here’s what you don’t understand: Black people BUILT 5th Ave and so much of this nation. Your 'luxury' came from THEIR labor, for which they have never been justly compensated. We are honoring them. The fact that you see it as denigrating your street is the definition of racism."

In previous comments on the mural, Trump tweeted, "Told that [Mayor Bill de Blasio] wants to paint the fabled & beautiful Fifth Avenue, right in front of Trump Tower/Tiffany, with a big yellow Black Lives Matter sign. ‘Pigs in a Blanket, Fry ‘Em Like Bacon’, referring to killing Police, is their chant. NYC Police are furious!" When announcing the mural, De Blasio explained his reasoning by saying, "A proposal put on the table was to name streets in each borough and to paint the words on the streets of this city. In each borough, at a crucial location. What will be clear in the street name and on the streets of our city is that message that now our city must fully, fully, deeply feel – and this nation must as well – that Black Lives Matter."

The mural was initially set to be painted on July 2, but at the last minute, it was canceled. According to the NY Post, a New York City Hall spokesperson stated that the event was postponed due to a scheduling change. The spokesperson went on to say that they would be "sending out more details in the coming days on a new date."