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Several weeks ago, a white woman called police on a black family barbecuing at Lake Merritt Park in Oakland, echoing recent incidents that involved police being called on black people engaging in seemingly normal, everyday activity.
After black artists were accused of robbing a home as they left an Airbnb with their luggage, and two young entrepreneurs were accused of trespassing while seated in a Starbucks, Oakland folks who heard about the Lake Merritt “BBQing-While-Black” incident responded in force – with a massive over-the-top cookout less than 24 hours later in the same exact spot.
On Thursday, a woman named Michelle Snider captured video of another white woman berating the barbecuing family and threatening to call the police on them for allegedly barbecuing with a charcoal grill in a non-designated area. Snider can be heard saying, “This is exactly what is the problem with Oakland today. This lady wants to sit here and call the police on them for having a barbecue at the lake as if this is not normal.”
The woman reportedly waited for two hours until the police arrived. “I reported over two hours ago some people were illegally grilling in the park with a charcoal grill where they’re not supposed to,” she said. “I was waiting there for a response because I was told they were coming. After two hours, I just called the non-emergency line, and in the interim these people came up and started harassing me, physically pushing me.”
Well, Oakland locals weren’t about to take this sitting down. Instead, hundreds gathered there the next day for an old-fashioned cookout, compete with kids frolicking, R&B classics like BBD’s “Poison” and, of course, a big ol’ electric slide.
Footage of the revenge cookout quickly went viral. The internet has had even more fun with Snider, creating some amusing memes:
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