ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A group in the Northeast Heights is making a statement with sidewalk chalk. They say it’s in response to a neighbor going to great lengths to erase their messages of love and unity, and that they say they won’t be silenced.
“We’re doing some positive chalk art in the park,” said Carolyn Stapleton. “In support and in solidarity for fairness, equality, equal justice for all under the law, and the Black Lives Matter,” said Stapleton.
Carolyn Stapleton says she’s been creating the sidewalk art for a couple of weeks, but she says the messages are upsetting one of her neighbors. “He said it was graffiti and vandalism, I pointed out that it was chalk and it was perishable and said it was sh**. He began saying, ‘you people, the problem with you people’,” said Stapleton.
She says he was so bothered by it, he complained to the City and they power-washed the chalk away. Carolyn’s friends emailed the mayor, getting permission to create more sidewalk art this morning. “I learned from the mayor that they have issued an order to not remove any sidewalk art so this should be protected now,” said Lesley Goddin.
The group says they’re just exercising their First Amendment rights. “If he would like to come out with chalk and make his own statements, his own first amendment right, I’d be happy to have him join us,” said Stapleton. The group says the Mayor sent a message to the Waste Management Department advising them to leave any sidewalk art alone.
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