BLM co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors defends real estate holdings
“Marxist” Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors tearfully defended her $3.2 million real estate empire, insisting she didn’t use a penny of BLM donations on herself.
“I have never taken a salary from the Black Lives Matters Global Networks Foundation,” she also said Thursday.
“That’s important,” she told host told “Black News Tonight” host Marc Lamont Hill, “because what the right-wing media is trying to say is that the donations that people gave to Black Lives Matter went towards my spending.
“And that is categorically untrue and incredibly dangerous.”
But in insisting she did not take a salary from the organization’s non-profit foundation, Khan-Cullors left unsaid whether she was paid through BLM’s network of similarly named for-profit entities.
What that pay might be is cloaked in secrecy, as BLM’s for-profit branches do not reveal spending and executive pay.
Khan-Cullor is in hot water since The Post first revealed on Sunday that she snapped up four high-end homes as donations poured into the movement, especially in the wake of horrific video of George Floyd’s death under the knee of a Minneapolis cop.
Khan-Cullors has said that the nonprofit foundation took in $90 million in 2020.
“I’ve not just been a target of the right and white supremacists at this moment,” she said Thursday of the backlash from both the left and the right after the New York Post exposé on her property spending spree.
Khan-Cullors was not specifically asked during Thursday’s interview if she took a salary from BLM’s closed-books for-profit arms.
But she said she is in favor, generally, of organizers collecting a “living wage.” And she said she has income streams beyond the BLM coffers.
“So your income that you have used to make whatever purchases you have made have come from outside the company. Your income does not come from working directly with the BLMGN?” he said.
“That’s correct,” she answered. Again, it was not clear if she was speaking of the group’s nonprofit or for-profit arm.
“I’m a college professor, first of all,” she continued. “I also am a TV producer. And I have had two book deals.
“My first book that came out was a New York Times best seller. And I have also had a YouTube deal,” she said.
“All of my income comes directly from the work that I do,” she said.
“But I also want to say something, Mark, that feels very important. Organizers should get paid for the work that they do. They should get paid a living wage,” she said.
She slammed as a “lie” The Post’s tip from a real estate agent in the Bahamas, who said she and her wife, BLM Canada co-founder Janaya Khan, recently shopped for a multimillion-dollar property in a luxury oceanfront community there, where they would become neighbors to Justin Timberlake and Tiger Woods.
She hadn’t stepped foot in the island since a “dancing trip” at age 15, she insisted.
She confirmed that she owns four homes, but said she invested in the properties to take care of her family, she said.
“I’m not renting them out in some Airbnb operation,” she said.
“The way that I live my life is in direct support of black people, including my black family members first and foremost,” she said.
“I have a child, I have a brother that has severe mental illness that I take care of. I support my mother, and I support many other family members of mine,” she said.
“My money is not my own — I see it as my family’s money as well,” she said.
Khan-Cullors also took time out to rip the media for reporting on her lavish spending.
“The fact that the right wing media is trying to create hysteria around my spending is frankly racist, and sexist,” Khan-Cullors said
BLM has been distributing its millions in donations to worthy groups fighting white supremacy, she said, including a $27 million commitment to “black-led organizations, not just our chapters, across the country.”
She choked up as she described having to hire “security” after the negative backlash.
“I spent the last week with security and, yeah, these articles have shown the homes that I live in and that my family lives in,” she said, sobbing briefly.
“It’s hard building movements,” she added.
“I promise you what we’re trying to do is get black people free. That’s what we’re trying to do. And we’re going to make mistakes, we’re going to stumble, but we need the community to lift us up, so that we can be accountable in a principled way, in an honest way and most importantly in a loving way.
“What’s happening to me is so not loving. But I’m not the only one this is happening to,” she said.
“We’ve seen so many women of color be at the mercy of our movements that we build and also the right wing.
“Where do women of color get to go when we make honest mistakes? We need often more help and we are not getting it.”
She urged members of the BLM movement to “band together.”
“I’m not a person interested in being ‘all praise,’ or ‘all praise Patrisse,’ or ‘all praise BLM.’ I’m not interested in that,” she said.
“I’m interested in evolving and growing and the only way we do that is through conflict that’s generative. Not conflict that further harms or makes it dangerous for people to live in their own homes.”
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