The Philadelphia chapter of Black Lives Matter has banned white people from attending an upcoming meeting, arguing that the group's events are “black centered.”
“This is a black only space,” the organization posted on its Facebook event page.
The April 15 event, ironically described as an “open meeting,” is a planning session for the year ahead, serving as an opportunity for activists to “meet, strategize and organize.” Though white people are barred from the meeting, the group made sure to note that they are “family friendly” and invited people to bring their children to the meeting.
When BLM Philly was attacked on social media for blocking white people, the activist group took to Twitter to defend its ban. They explained to followers that the meetings are “black centered.”
Anyone who identifies as “a person of the African Diaspora” is invited to attend.
“If you identify as a person of the African Diaspora You can attend our meetings and become a member,” the chapter tweeted. “If not you can support us in other ways.”
If you identify as a person of the African Diaspora You can attend our meetings and become a member. If not you can… https://t.co/RulCCX1CYR— BLM Philly (@BLM Philly)1491221075.0
The “African Diaspora” typically refers to the people who were dispersed from Africa during the Transatlantic Slave Trade from the 1500s to the 1800s.
When someone on Twitter pointed out to the Black Lives Matter group that civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. worked alongside white people to accomplish his goals, they brushed it aside as his choice.
“He made that choice and we have made ours,” the group tweeted. “White people can support us but they cannot attend our meetings.”
The chapter then referred to civil rights activist Malcolm X. “Malcolm took our same stance. White people could not attend the meetings but could support his organization,” the chapter said in a tweet.
Malcolm took our same stance. White people could not attend the meetings but could support his organization https://t.co/RyUGClETHJ— BLM Philly (@BLM Philly)1491220560.0