In Toledo, Ohio, a mural of a Black man named George Floyd, who made international headlines last year when he was killed by police, was destroyed when lightning hit it.
Authorities did not confirm how lightning may have damaged the brick-made mural but promised that they will work together with Toledo's arts commission and the artist to ensure it gets replaced "so that the message at the core of this artwork can be heard," Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz said in a statement.
"We may never know for certainty why the George Floyd mural came down. It could have been an act of nature, or it could have been an act of vandalism," Mayor Kapszukiewicz said, as reported by USA Today. "What we do know is that the mural will be replaced."
A witness, however, reported to the Toledo Fire and Rescue that the wall upon which the mural was painted on was destroyed by lightning, causing it to collapse. The WTVG-TV station's doppler radar showed a lightning strike around the area early Tuesday evening, corroborating the accounts of witnesses who reported the occurrence to the Toledo Police Department. The Toledo Metro area experienced thunderstorms around 4 to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, which the National Weather Service said would feature "frequent lightning strikes."
An old wall in Toledo, Ohio that was the site of a George Floyd mural collapsed and fell apart. pic.twitter.com/xNYkOi3zjo
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) July 14, 2021
Opponents of the Marxist-Socialist Black Lives Matter movement, which took to arms following the death of Floyd in 2020, are pointing out how the destruction of the mural was "a sign." According to Townhall, Donald Trump Jr. took to Twitter to share, "It's almost like a higher power is telling us something."
"When was the last time you heard of a brick building being destroyed by lightning? I am a builder and I'm not sure I've ever heard of it," Trump Jr. said. The former presidential son is a former reality TV star, author, and is the executive vice president of the Trump Organization.
Director and producer Robby Starbuck shared "Lightning had a good run but I regret to inform you it's about to be called racist. Seriously though this sounds biblical."
According to Chron, a new George Floyd mural will be put up at The Breakfast Klub in Houston, Texas. While it won't replace the one that was destroyed by lightning in the state of Ohio, it will be another mural honoring Floyd's death and the BLM movement. Houston artist Reginald Adams said thatFloyd's death was a "tipping point and a trigger" in the BLM movement, which detractors believe is anti-American and racist.
In 2016, former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani condemned BLM as "inherently racist," the New York Times reported. Giuliani, who has close ties to former President Donald Trump, declared, "Black lives matter. White lives matter. Asian lives matter. Hispanic lives matter. That's anti-American, and it's racist."