George Floyd Square Is a Crime-Ridden Disaster, Black Business Owners Speak Out

AP Photo/Ben Gray

With the guilty verdict levied against Derek Chauvin, the quasi-religious shrine to George Floyd in Minneapolis is continuing to cause major issues for those who actually live there. While outsiders pour in and crime spikes, including at least one murder in the square, those who actually live in the area are paying the price.

Now, black business owners are speaking out and asking for something to be done to help their situation.

The Washington Examiner:

Black-owned businesses surrounding the area where George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis last year say they are in desperate need of help from police.

Black merchants operating on the corner of 38th Street and Chicago Avenue, known as George Floyd Square, are struggling to stay open due to rampant crime and say police have blocked off the intersection, creating a dangerous autonomous zone, according to the New York Post.

“The city left me in danger,” the owner of Smoke in the Pit said Thursday, two days after Derek Chauvin was convicted of murder for Floyd’s death. “They locked us up on here and left us behind.”

Several stores on the block are boarded up, and the New York Post reported that many owners and workers were afraid to comment about the dire situation due to fear of reprisal.

I don’t think the police should be blamed here, nor do I think they are the ones who should be expected to fix this situation. The reason the city ended up blocking off the square is that things got way too dangerous there to continue to allow traffic to flow freely. Protest groups would regularly block the streets, cause disturbances, and create an unsafe environment for passers-by.

Unfortunately, as the article suggests, fear of reprisal is likely leaving many of the business owners in George Floyd Square in a position where they don’t feel they can speak out against what is truly causing their problems — the Black Lives Matter movement.

They and other activist groups continue to use the square as a political prop and staging area. Police are simply reacting to that and trying to ensure there isn’t any escalation. Further, there have been numerous reports that activists and vigilantes aren’t letting police enter the area regularly to police crime. Thus, you get the crime spikes talked about here. Whether you are talking about grand theft auto or violent crimes, they’ve increased since last summer.

This goes along with my recent critique of Black Lives Matter. How has the movement actually made life better for anyone, much less black Americans? In cities where BLM has been most active, we’ve seen large increases in crime, including murders. We’ve seen economic ruin in the places where riots took place. At what point does the black community say enough is enough? Perhaps these business owners in George Floyd Square are getting there, but if they are only focused on the police removing some barricades, they aren’t going to see the change they want. It’s time to call out who’s really responsible for this.