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Indybay Feature
Two Protests Takeover Streets on Juneteenth in Palo Alto
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
Women occupied the street in front of Palo Alto City Hall from 2am on Juneteenth to paint a giant B-L-M on Hamilton Ave, shutting down the roadway in both directions. Protests followed at noon and 5pm creating more street closures.
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Top photo courtesy @VigilforDemocracy.
All other photos by Simona Martin, Pro Bono Photo. Please credit the photographer.

Two women activists showed up at 2 a.m Friday Juneteenth in downtown Palo Alto carrying cans of bright yellow paint, rollers, and other painting equipment for a stealth action. It took six hours to draw the outline of the letters "BLM" for Black Lives Matter on the Hamilton Avenue pavement in front of City Hall and King Plaza. Their unpermitted action meant they had to stave off cars on the road in the early hours of Friday, June 19th.

The project took longer than anticipated as the letters measured 35 feet high, but careful calculations helped them align the three letters evenly -- BLM. By 5 am traffic picked up on the road. The painters garnered cooperation from street sweeping machine operators and sanitation truckers by standing their ground and shouting "this is for Black Lives Matter." At 7am a city contractor who showed up for work quickly summed up the situation and put up traffic cones and danger tape to block traffic in solidarity.

Their preparation was for the first of two demonstrations held near city hall that Friday. At noon local high school students and community activists decorated the outlined letters, then held a die-in at the site. The scene was captured from overhead in a photo the students took with a drone.

A second rally at 5 p.m. the same day in King Plaza featured testimony by local residents who recounted negative experiences with the police department, the justice system and Palo Alto Union School District. Students led a march through downtown Palo Alto starting around 6 p.m., taking over major streets including Middlefield Road, and Hamilton, Forest and University avenues.

@VigilforDemocracy and the Raging Grannies Action League are the Midnite Street Artists. High school students, recent grads and other young activists decorated the BLM outline and led the die-in at the noon action.
§5pm rally
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§5pm
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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§6pm March Begins
by Midnite Street Artists
Saturday Jun 27th, 2020 9:28 PM
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