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Robert Namer
Voice Of America
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APRIL 7, 2017

     Black Lives Matter is non American.  Black Lives Matter Philly, responding to a brewing controversy about its meetings being "a black only space," defended its position Wednesday by saying its members need a separate place "to strategize, organize, heal."  Its two-page statement read in part: "During the last 36 hours, Black Lives Matter Philly (BLM Philly) has been attacked online and the subject of several right-wing media articles about our April open meeting invitation that states it is a Black only space. ... We are unapologetically Black and believe having Black only spaces — where Black people can come together to strategize, organize, heal and fellowship without the threat of violence and co-optation — is an important part of Black liberation."

      In an article Monday, the ultra-conservative Breitbart website called out the Black Lives Matter Philly group for holding meetings where only black people are invited to attend. It wrote that BLM Philly "has banned white people" from its April 15 meeting.  Black Lives Matter Philly, one of two BLM groups in Philadelphia, has regularly advertised its meetings on Twitter and Facebook and has called its meetings "a black only space." Its next meeting was to be held at Mastery Charter Schools' Shoemaker Campus in West Philadelphia, but the location was changed Tuesday for security reasons, BLM Philly said in an email Wednesday.  While the "black only space" notice is not new, the discovery of it by conservative websites, including Breitbart, has caused an online controversy on both sides.


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