A New Jersey business owner said he won’t take down an “All Lives Matter” banner from his store until “the looting and burning stops.”
Protesters have gathered outside of Peter Corelli’s Lakeview Custom Coach automotive shop for weeks over a sign that reads, “All Lives Matter God Bless & Protect Our Police Officers.”
Despite the repeated protests over the sign, Corelli said he’s sticking with the banner’s message.
“When the looting and burning stops, I’ll take the sign down,” Corelli told Fox 29.
Corelli said he purchased the banner in 2016 and only put it back up amid months of civil unrest across the country, sparked by the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis in May.
“I consider everybody in this country — black, white, yellow — we’re all the same,” Corelli said. “When this looting and burning down cities, destroying police officers’ equipment — I just got to the point I said, ‘I can’t do it anymore. I’ve got to make a statement.'”
Protesters said they plan to protest the sign every Monday night until it comes down.
“If you know it’s harming the community that you say you serve and you have this many people showing up for six weeks straight, clearly you’re bullying,” protest organizer Allison Bolomey said.
Civil unrest has intensified in the last week following the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Blake is reportedly paralyzed from the waist down after officers shot him multiple times while he returned to an SUV during an arrest on Sunday night.
The shooting has sparked looting, rioting, and arson in the city, with two people dying Tuesday night during the violence.