(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)
- Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms urged protesters to "go home" after some shattered the glass entrance to the local headquarters of CNN, which also houses a police precinct.
- "This is not a protest," Bottoms said. "This is chaos. A protest has purpose."
- The mayor urged residents to vote "if you want change in America."
- Bottoms cited her own experience as a mother of black children, telling protesters, "You're not going to out-concern me and out-care me about where we are in America."
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Claiming protesters were dishonoring the life of George Floyd and violating "the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr.," Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms on Friday condemned residents of her city who protested outside the local headquarters of CNN, which also houses a police precinct.
While most protesters were peaceful, some in the crowd of hundreds threw objects at the entrance to the CNN building, shattering the glass. Others defaced its logo.
Videos captured by local media also showed some protesters jumping on and throwing objects at police cars.
—Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) May 30, 2020
The protests began as a response to the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on Monday.
"This is not a protest," Bottoms said. "This is chaos. A protest has purpose."
"If you love our city, go home," she added.
The mayor was flanked by local musicians TI and Killer Mike, who urged their fellow Atlantans to stay peaceful.
Bottoms, for her part, said those who loved the city and it's "legacy of black mayors and black police chiefs," should just "go home."
She also cited her own experience as a mother of black children, and said the protesters weren't the only ones concerned about racism in America.
"I am a mother to four black children in America, one of whom is 18 years old. And when I saw the murder of George Floyd, I hurt like a mother would hurt," Bottoms said. "And yesterday when I heard there were rumors about violent protests in Atlanta, I did what a mother would do, I called my son and I said, 'Where are you?' I said, 'I cannot protect you and black boys shouldn't be out today.'"
Bottoms continued, after a pause: "So, you're not going to out-concern me and out-care me about where we are in America. I wear this each and every day, and I pray over my children, each and every day."
Atlanta has itself been the scene of high-profile killings by police. In 2019, for example, a member of Mayor Bottoms' security detail, while off duty, shot and killed 18-year-old D'Ettrick Griffin. The officer was pumping gas when Griffin reportedly attempted to steal his vehicle.
Griffin's family filed a $5 million lawsuit against the city.
On Friday, Bottoms argued those upset over police brutality should express it at the ballot box.
"If you want change in America, go and register to vote. Show up at the polls on June 9th; do it November. That is the change we need in this country," she said. "We are better than this."
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