MILWAUKEE — Demonstrators are already planning to hold protests in Milwaukee during the Democratic National Convention. State Representative David Bowen said he will join protesters as they march the streets to demand justice for people of color.
A number of city leaders have shared their concerns that protests could get out of hand during the DNC. Bowen, a Milwaukee Democrat, argues the opposite. He believes leaders of Milwaukee’s protests have shown that they have and will remain peaceful.
Bowen has marched in dozens of protests since the death of George Floyd.
“I’ve made the commitment. If they’re going to keep coming out every day, I’m going to keep coming out everyday,” he said.
Bowen said he plans to do the same when the lights shine brightest on Milwaukee in just three weeks
“It’s important to really recognize the fact that this is what makes up Milwaukee’s history, the struggle for justice, the struggle for life to be better for all people, especially people of color, especially Black people,” Bowen said.
Mayor Tom Barrett said protests will be allowed to take place inside the DNC’s large security footprint. That area is open to the public and will be patrolled by Milwaukee police.
However, demonstrators won’t be able to get close to the Wisconsin Center. The host site of the DNC will have its own security perimeter that will be strictly enforced.
“Looking at where the Wisconsin Center is and building out a few blocks in each direction,” Barrett said.
Alex Lasry was one of the key players in getting the DNC to choose Milwaukee. He welcomes protesters to share their message, but he urges everyone to stay safe by wearing masks.
“I think that’s great and those types of issues will not only be at the forefront of the DNC, but also need to be continued to be spoken about all across the city,” Lasry said.
“I hope many folks that are part of the DNC actually come out to protest with us,” Bowen added. “We’re here to protest for justice, not against anyone person or any one group.”
Groups that plan to protest during the DNC are expected to file for permits through the city attorney’s office well in advance. Bowen said the group he’s marching with has no plans of doing so.