Yesterday was a very difficult day for us as a city. I know many of you sat in your homes watching video of the unrest with a feeling of helplessness and disbelief. That is certainly how I felt as I watched the events unfold with my family. Witnessing the violence and damage to our City was truly brutal and felt like a violation of our home. There is really no other way to say it. And while the Third District and our business corridors suffered minimal intrusion, it was difficult to see the destruction and devastation happening to our downtown area.
Today, my heart goes out to my colleagues who represent those areas, to the many business owners who were unjustifiably targeted, and the residents who live in these neighborhoods. I realize tensions are high and we need to begin to heal. However, it is tragic that the violence of last night diluted the message that the non-violent protesters were trying to raise up. It is difficult to meaningfully listen to a message with an open heart if you feel that you or your community is under attack. It is a natural human response. These destructive acts inflicted on our City serve to undercut the best intentions of protesters working to peacefully seek change in their community. I agree, that as a city, we need to have difficult conversations about policy, training, and criminal justice. I am here and willing to listen and make these necessary changes, absolutely without question. But, we cannot ignore the violence and destruction that happened yesterday. It was not justice, it was not free speech, it was simply wrong and not at all what the peaceful protesters wanted. Looting and arson were not their message or their methodology for bringing about change. I thank those protesters who tried to mitigate the destruction last night.
I will update everyone on any developments I hear today. I again asking that 2nd Street be closed. Everyone please stay safe and feel free to contact my office if there is anything we can do to assist you.
We are a community of many races, ethnicities, life experiences, and beliefs, but from this varied spectrum we share one community. We share one City. We share a common desire to see our home safe, protected, and representing the needs of everyone. Long Beach is a strong community, and events like last night will not stop us from moving forward together to chart a course toward a positive future. We are one family, and together we can repair the damage as well as honor the message of needed progress.
If you have any questions feel free to contact my office at (562)570-6300 or by email at email@example.com.