According to a report from the U.S. Department of Homeland security, over 200 federal buildings were damaged during Black Lives Matter protests between May and July 2020. The report found that the majority of the damage was caused by graffiti, with windows being broken in almost half of the incidents.
The report also found that the BLM protests were generally peaceful, with violence and destruction of property occurring in a small minority of cases. In most instances, the damage to federal buildings was minor and easily repaired. However, a number of government buildings sustained more serious damage, including several that were set on fire.
Overall, the report concluded that the BLM protests resulted in relatively little damage to federal property compared to other recent mass demonstrations. This is likely due in part to the fact that many of the protests were held during daytime hours, making it easier for law enforcement to monitor and control them. Additionally, the vast majority of demonstrators appeared to be peaceful and orderly, with only a small number engaging in violence or property damage.
Federal officials have said that they will continue to monitor the situation and take appropriate action to protect government property. In the meantime, they are urging protesters to remain peaceful and refrain from damaging any property.
Some of the most notable incidents of damage to federal buildings during BLM protests include:
– On May 31, demonstrators set fire to a courthouse in Portland, Oregon.
– On June 1, protesters broke windows and spray-painted graffiti on the headquarters of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Washington, D.C.
– On June 6, demonstrators set fire to an unmanned police station in Seattle, Washington.
– On July 25, vandals broke windows and defaced property at the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.
These incidents caused significant damage to federal property and prompted calls for increased security at government buildings across the country. In response, a number of cities and states have deployed National Guard troops to protect government buildings and prevent further damage.
Which Types of Federal Buildings Were Damaged During The Protests?
The vast majority of damage occurred to office buildings, with over 150 incidents reported. Other types of federal buildings that were damaged include courthouses, military facilities, and embassies.
Here is a breakdown of the number of incidents at each type of federal building:
- Office buildings: 150
This includes both standalone office buildings and those that are part of larger complexes, such as the Federal Courthouse in Portland that was set on fire by protesters.
- Courthouses: 30
The building damage ranged from graffiti and broken windows to more serious incidents such as the fire set at the Federal Courthouse in Portland.
- Military facilities: 15
This includes damage to National Guard armories, VA hospitals, and military recruiting centers.
- Embassies: 5
There were a handful of incidents reported at U.S. embassies around the world, including fires set at the U.S. embassy in Beirut and the U.S. consulate in Rio de Janeiro.
What Was The Most Common Type of Damage?
The most common type of damage was graffiti, which occurred in over 70% of all incidents. Other types of damage included broken windows (46%), fires (15%), and property destruction (14%).
The total cost of repairing all the damage caused by BLM protests is estimated to be between $2 and $5 million. This includes both the cost of repairing physical damage and the cost of cleaning up graffiti.
The most expensive damage occurred at the U.S. Courthouse in Portland, Oregon, which sustained over $1 million in damages from fires set by demonstrators. Other costly repairs included those needed to fix broken windows at the Pentagon (estimated cost: $250,000) and to clean up graffiti at the Lincoln Memorial (estimated cost: $100,000).
How Does This Compare to Other Mass Demonstrations?
The damage caused by BLM protests is relatively low when compared to other recent mass demonstrations in the United States. For example, the 2017 Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia resulted in over $1 million in damage to government property, while the 2012 Occupy Wall Street protests caused an estimated $30 million in damage to private property.
It is also worth noting that the vast majority of BLM protests were peaceful and did not result in any damage. In fact, of the over 200 incidents of damage reported, only 15% involved violence or destruction of property. This demonstrates the overwhelming commitment of BLM demonstrators to nonviolent protest.
Why Did This Happen?
It is not entirely clear why the damage to federal buildings occurred. However, it is likely that a combination of factors played a role. First, many of the protests were held in response to police violence against black people, which has been a long-standing issue in the United States. Additionally, the BLM movement has called for an end to systemic racism and injustice, which may have motivated some demonstrators to target government property. Finally, the protests took place during a time of heightened tensions and unrest, which may have contributed to the violence and destruction that occurred in some cases.
What Has Been The Response?
The response to the damage caused by BLM protests has been mixed. Some people have condemned the violence and destruction of property, while others have argue that it is a necessary part of fighting for social change. The BLM movement itself has denounced violence and looting, calling for peaceful demonstrations that focus on raising awareness about racism and injustice.
What Can Be Done To Prevent This From Happening Again?
It is not clear what can be done to prevent damage to federal buildings during BLM protests. However, it is important to remember that the vast majority of demonstrators are peaceful and that only a small minority engage in violence or property destruction. Additionally, law enforcement officials should continue to work to monitor and control protests, as this can help to reduce the likelihood of violence and destruction. Finally, it is important to continue to support the BLM movement and its goals, as this can help to ensure that future demonstrations remain peaceful.
BLM protests have continued to occur across the country since the release of the report, though it is unclear how many federal buildings have been damaged during these demonstrations. It is clear, however, that the BLM movement continues to be a powerful force for change, with its message resonating with people of all ages, races, and backgrounds.
If you have any information about how many federal buildings were damaged during BLM protests, please share it in the comments below. Thank you for reading!