Portland's Wall of Moms group — which gained national attention recently after lining up nightly on city streets in solidarity with violent leftists — has been accused of "anti-blackness" by leaders of a black-led community group, the Oregonian reported.
What are the details?
It's an ironic turn of events given that Wall of Moms members said they aimed to support Black Lives Matter, the paper said, adding that last week the group's white leadership relinquished their positions to let women of color be in charge.
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The new leaders included Teressa Raiford, executive director of Don't Shoot Portland, as well as Demetria Hester and Danialle James, the Oregonian said.
But on Wednesday — just days after the regime-change announcement — Don't Shoot Portland issued an Instagram post urging folks to stop supporting Wall of Moms and saying it wasn't working with the group any longer, the paper said.
Don't Shoot Portland's post said Wall of Moms members left "vulnerable Black women downtown after marching" and also was guilty of "failing to support those on the ground that put trust in them." In addition, the post said Wall of Moms leaders "found time to make THREE registrations through Oregon's Secretary of State" without notifying the group's new black leaders.
"The lies are finally clear, and we are sad but ultimately not surprised that anti-Blackness showed it's ugly face with Wall of Moms," the post noted, adding that Wall of Moms "was not started for BLM, but to get the feds out of PDX" and that "we were used to further an agenda unrelated to BLM."
The post also said, "Please do not support this organization anymore. We need everyone to show up against racism, but it's even more crucial to prioritize transparency and accountability."
What did Wall of Moms have to say?
According to the Oregonian, Wall of Moms' official Twitter account retweeted Don't Shoot Portland's statement and answered a commenter's question by saying, "The founder went rogue. Many of us do not agree with her decisions. And she does not currently have access to this account."
The group also said it's trying to "regroup and do things the right way" but that "no official announcements" had been made:
Hey team, by now y'all have heard about the drama unfolding. Lots of us are trying to regroup and do things the rig… https://t.co/NdH1LA9Blm— WOM OFFICIAL (@WOM OFFICIAL)1596052477.0
Wall of Moms founder Bev Barnum appeared to post a comment Wednesday morning on her group's private Facebook page that addressed the controversy, the paper said.
"The announcement of the 501c3 really hurt some of you," she wrote, according to the Oregonian. "That was never my intention. In fact, it was just the opposite. WOM will be led by a BIPOC board and BIPOC advisor committee. WOM is a group that supports BLM, not a BLM group. If that is not good enough for you, please feel free to leave this group. And if you currently volunteer your time, please feel free to leave your positions."
The paper said a new Facebook group called Moms United for Black Lives has formed, and a post from Faith Lightsy — a member of the group — indicated that she and others are in contact with Raiford, Hester, and James to figure out next steps.
"This group is only a few hours old with 3k members already...please be patient with us," the post read, according to the Oregonian. "I am in direct contact with Teressa, and she has asked repeatedly this group be centered around Demetria and Danialle."
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