WASHINGTON - D.C.'s mayor said diners shouldn't have to be fearful when eating at outdoor restaurants following videos posted online showing protesters confronting patrons seated at outside tables.
"What I saw in those videos was highly inappropriate," said Mayor Muriel Bowser at a press conference Wednesday. "It was likely against the law if they were on private property. But more importantly I don't think it had anything to do with demands for social justice."
At least two videos posted on social media show groups of protesters confronting outdoor diners in the District Monday night. In one of the videos, a large group of protestors can be seen crowding around a woman sitting outside of a restaurant in Adams Morgan, shouting: "No justice, no peace" and "White silence is violence!" The confrontation allegedly began when Black Lives Matter protesters demanded that white diners show their solidarity by putting up a fist.
A second video showed a similar incident in Northwest, D.C.
Bowser said she would "encourage any diner or restaurant to call the police immediately" if incidents like those were to happen. She also acknowledged that diners are supporting the city by picking up, taking out and eating at local restaurants during the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I would venture to say that the vast majority of those experiences have been 100 percent positive," she said about D.C. dining experiences. "I also don't think that D.C. residents would be bullied out of living their everyday lives."