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U.S. Post Office Removes Oakland Mailboxes

The U.S. Post Office this weekend said it removed several blue mailboxes in downtown Oakland in anticipation of vandalism related to ongoing protests in solidarity with protests in Wisconsin over the shooting of Jacob Blake.

A candlelight vigil honoring victims of police violence took
place Saturday night.

“It’s important for the community to keep coming out and
showing that this is something that we’re aware of, that we’re passionate
about, that matters, that’s not going away until we make systemic change,” said
Oakland resident Nathan Reinicke.

The vigil continued with a march.

The previous few nights have seen some vandalism as peaceful
protests are infiltrated by vandals bent on destruction.

The Alameda County Courthouse is boarded up in anticipation
of more damage.

But right outside the courthouse is a blue U.S. Post Office

It is not among the six others in downtown Oakland that have been cut loose and taken away by the agency.

According to congresswoman Barbara Lee’s office, the mailboxes
have been removed for safety reasons ahead of protests so they won’t be

She’s not happy about it and is demanding to know when they
will be returned.

Demonstrators don’t buy the reasoning.

“I think it’s a convenient excuse for the ongoing gutting of
the United States Postal Service,” said Reinicke.

People having dinner near where a spot where one of the
boxes used to stand don’t buy the reasoning either.

“I can’t believe that,” said Oakland resident Denise Dotson.
“I’m sorry, I just don’t. I don’t see why the protesters would destroy the
mailboxes. That’s B.S. to me.”

Another Oakland resident, Ursula Rodriguez, agreed.

“I think it’s just another way to control the election
coming up,” she said.

Earlier this month the Postmaster General, Louis DeJoy, came
under heavy criticism for several initiatives that have seemingly slowed down
postal deliveries.

He then promised to pause his efforts, including removing
the blue mailboxes.

“To avoid even the appearance of any impact on election
mail, I am suspending these initiatives until after the election is concluded,”
he said.

Representative Barbara Lee sent a letter to DeJoy reminding
him of his statement and his recent testimony before congress making a similar

She expects the boxes to be replaced Monday.

The United States Post Office has not yet returned NBC Bay
Area’s calls and messages seeking comment about the missing blue boxes.

Source: NBC Bay Area

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