4th of July event leads to the removal of BLM chalk art, causes controversy in Dover
DOVER, Del. – A fourth of July celebration in Dover became the center of controversy after videos surfaced online of the Dover Fire Department washing off chalk art that was left on the sidewalk of Legislative Mall from a Black Lives Matter protest.
“They created murals and works of art. Pictures of George Floyd, things of that nature,” said Representative Sean Lynn (D-District 31).
The videos were shared dozens of times on social media angering many, including Lynn.
“They just kind of went out there and washed away what was found offensive, and that’s just not right.”
On July 4th, the city of Dover held a Back the Red White and Blue Rally sponsored by Councilman David Anderson, one day after the Black Lives Matter Protest. And according to Lynn, someone ordered the Dover Fire Department to come out and hose down some of the black lives matter chalk art the day of the event.
“The fire truck pulled up and started to wash it away. I mean I made a video, but there really wasn’t a lot we could do at that point,” said protester David Haynes.
But now Councilman David Anderson is speaking out to put an end to the rumors. Saying although he does not know who made the call to remove the chalk art, there was a lot of profanity written on the sidewalks. And that was the only thing that needed to go. Everything else, he wanted to keep.
“The police stopped them and directed them to only wash off certain things that were profane. We made every effort to make sure that as much could be preserved as possible,” said Anderson.
But that reasoning didn’t have everyone convinced.
“They didn’t just do the profanity. In fact, they left a lot of profanity on other sidewalks so it really wasn’t just about that,” said Haynes.
Despite some not agreeing with Anderson’s views, he says he stands by the decision made to remove the profanity and will not support the “fake controversy”.
“I will always respect this flag and this country no matter what anyone says,” said Anderson.
According to Representative Lynn, he filed a freedom of information act request with the city to find out who ordered the fire department to go ahead and wash off the chalk art. But he says he was told that no information would be forthcoming until 15 days after the state of emergency is lifted in the state of Delaware.