Banners with messages including “Diversity and inclusion you have failed” and “Know your BLM brothers, die for Puerto Rico” were among about 30 antisemitic, pro-Trump demonstrations outside the Brooklyn Nets game against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday, according to NBA.com. Some of the protesters waved Trump signs including “Make America White Again.”
Additional reports said that some chanted that Jews were responsible for at least five deaths of people who died in a New York City fire in March.
At least 30 right-wing protesters march across the Brooklyn Bridge and briefly near Barclays Center, protesting at a Nets game and trying to disrupt New York’s Puerto Rican Day Parade. Supporters of Puerto Rico protest the lack of assistance from Gov. Cuomo https://t.co/JPd2zeWT4D pic.twitter.com/brTLYse6hY — NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) August 16, 2018
Karen E. Rothstein, who writes for Jezebel, wrote that one protester passed out small white helium balloons representing the swastika to crowds at Barclays Center.
We live in a country that is growing darker and more divided than ever. Having protesters use their right to protest to spew hate speech of all kinds is deplorable. We all must denounce it. https://t.co/eFkpcIkZ5A — Laura Poitras (@LauraPoitras) August 16, 2018
Some of the NBA’s 29 other teams were offering special seating to groups paying $20,000 in addition to an official Nets package to ensure no hard feelings.
Since the demonstrations started in the Brooklyn borough president’s back yard, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver has denounced them and said the league’s security staff were helping Brooklyn police keep the protest area peaceful.