BLM Secretly Bought $6 Million House – Wanted To Keep It Secret
Black Lives Matter bought a $6 million California property back in October 2020. Until now the purchase of the property was unknown.
When the organization first was asked about the story they wondered if there was any way they could get the story killed.
The house which is referred to as the “Campus” is 6,500 square feet with over a half dozen bedrooms and bathrooms. It also has a pool, bungalow, and soundstage.
The transaction has not been previously reported, and Black Lives Matter’s leadership had hoped to keep the house’s existence a secret https://t.co/eHdU7lr9EW
— New York Magazine (@NYMag) April 4, 2022
None of the women acknowledged the house behind them. It’s far from a box, with more than 6,500 square feet, more than half a dozen bedrooms and bathrooms, several fireplaces, a soundstage, a pool and bungalow, and parking for more than 20 cars, according to real-estate listings. The California property was purchased for nearly $6 million in cash in October 2020 with money that had been donated to BLMGNF.
The transaction has not been previously reported, and Black Lives Matter’s leadership had hoped to keep the house’s existence a secret. Documents, emails, and other communications I’ve seen about the luxury property’s purchase and day-to-day operation suggest that it has been handled in ways that blur, or cross, boundaries between the charity and private companies owned by some of its leaders. It creates the impression that money donated to the cause of racial justice has been spent in ways that benefit the leaders of Black Lives Matter personally.
On March 30, I asked the organization questions about the house, which is known internally as “Campus.” Afterward, leaders circulated an internal strategy memo with possible responses, ranging from “Can we kill the story?” to “Our angle — needs to be to deflate ownership of the property.” The memo includes bullet points explaining that “Campus is part of cultural arm of the org — potentially as an ‘influencer house,’ where abolition+ based content is produced by artists & creatives.” Another bullet is headed “Accounting/990 modifications” and reads in part: “need to first make sure it’s legally okay to use as we plan to use it.” The memo also describes the property as a “safehouse” for leaders whose safety has been threatened. The two notions — that the house is simultaneously a confidential refuge and a place for broadcasting to the widest possible audience — are somewhat in tension. The memo notes: “Holes in security story: Use in public YT videos.”
Back in May, the co-founder of BLM, Patrisse Cullors, stepped down after BLM’s fiances came under criticism.
A co-founder of Black Lives Matter announced Thursday that she is stepping down as executive director of the movement’s foundation. She decried what she called a smear campaign from a far-right group, but said neither that nor recent criticism from other Black organizers influenced her departure.
The BLM foundation revealed to the AP in February that it took in just over $90 million last year, following the May 2020 murder of George Floyd, a Black man whose last breaths under the knee of a white Minneapolis police officer inspired protests globally. The foundation said it ended 2020 with a balance of more than $60 million, after spending nearly a quarter of its assets on operating expenses, grants to Black-led organizations and other charitable giving.