A four-block area around the Minneapolis intersection of 38th and Chicago is known as “George Floyd Square.” It is also referred to as “The Free State of George Floyd.” BLM and Antifa have declared it to be an autonomous zone. Recently, a BLM activist was murdered in the zone, and “shotspotters” pick up daily gunfire.
Barricades block the roads, and left-wing activists actively prevent police from entering the area.
A group of four Black-owned businesses, calling themselves the 38th Street Black Business Collective, say they have been devastated:
The Black businesses along George Floyd Square have suffered greatly. Lack of traffic down this once busy street has led to an unintended economic downfall for these businesses. These once prospering Black businesses have seen great revenue loss, over 75% loss to date.
Another unintended consequence of the occupation of 38th and Chicago is the rise in crime that has had a profound effect on these businesses. Following the killing of George Perry Floyd Jr. and the reduction of the Minneapolis Police Department, there has been uncontrollable crime in this city. Carjackings have nearly tripled and cars and catalytic converters are being stolen at high rates. Reports of bullets whizzing through the streets, businesses, innocent unintended residence homes, into cars and walls are plentiful. There is constant gunfire day and night, through all seasons despite the belief that winter would slow crime and gunfire it has not! In fact these Black businesses have suffered a similar fate having windows shot out from random gunfire, cars stolen, customers not patronizing businesses due to fear of violence in the neighborhood and throughout the city.
Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo is finally vowing to crack down on criminal activity in the zone. He stated, “if you make the choice to commit violence or engage in criminal behavior in and around 38th and Chicago, you will be our primary focus. We will bring all legal resources and tools to bear to disrupt and prevent you from harming our community, my community.”
The FBI & ATF are alleging that they will team up with the Minneapolis Police department to restore order in the zone. Terry Henderson, who is part of the ATF’s St. Paul Field Division, stated, “The FBI, ATF, U.S. Marshalls these are some of our most capable federal partners and they will play a role in this.”
Residents and local businesses remain skeptical that anything is going to change.
A local media outlet did a lengthy report on George Floyd Square recently.