They marched from 74th Street and Juniper Boulevard South to the baseball fields in front of the 9/11 memorial chanting “How do you spell hero? NYPD” and “De Blasio’s got to go!”
“We’re here to rally for the first responders and NYPD,” said a rally goer who asked to remain anonymous. “We are not denouncing the fact that there are problems in police departments, but the fact of the matter is that they are predominantly being misreported in the fake news media and we’re here to represent that all lives matter.
“We can make a positive change and impact, but we’re here to respect the first responders of NYPD in the tristate area,” they added.
As the rally seemed to be coming to an end, a group of supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement knelt on the field in response, which drew threats from the pro-police faction.
“We were a small group of about eight, that grew to about 15 as some local park goers saw what were doing and wanted to join in,” Black Lives Matter supporter Katrina Colletti said.
Police showed up for crowd control as scene grew more tense.
“The Blue Lives Matter group ran at us, stopped from physically assaulting us by the police, screaming maskless in our faces, making violent threats after threat, as we just stood and kneeled in place not engaging,” Colletti said.
Alex Gugliuzza organized the Black Lives Matter response.
“A group of us were very upset to see that our area was marching in direct response to the Black Lives Matter movement rally we held two weeks ago,” Gugliuzza said, referring to a Black Lives Matter rally in the same park on June 9.
“We were disgusted that many more people came out to these NYPD rallies than they did for Black Lives Matter, so we wanted to tell them that ‘if you’re marching for blue lives, you should be marching for black lives,’” Gugliuzza added.