With most people there to get some free potted plants or Munchkins and to chat with Mayor Wu, the usual gang of Covid screamers also descended on Iacono Playground in Readville this morning - this time with a large contingent of uniformed cops between them and the mayor.
They were joined at the mayor's coffee hour by a second group, the United Front Against Displacement, there to protest what they said was Wu's involvement in displacement of poor people from public housing and neighborhoods across the city. They pointed to the proposed Crane Ledge project in Hyde Park and the redevelopment of Mildred Hailey in Jamaica Plain as examples of how Wu talks a good game but is presiding over the further gentrification of Boston.
At one point, anti-vaxxer queen Catherine Vitale of Dorchester went over to talk to them about possibly joining forces. When she saw some of the anti-displacement protesters speaking to a Universal Hub reporter, she moved over and urged them not to talk to the reporter because, she claimed, he is "a scumbag" and, even worse, a Wu supporter.
The half dozen or so anti-displacement protesters held signs up and chanted behind Wu as the mayor and other elected officials spoke. But they did not scream or try get in the immediate faces of any of the politicians.
In contrast, there was one of Vitale's fellow bellowers, Shawn Nelson.
Nelson, who had been arrested in Ronan Park in Dorchester on Wednesday after refusing to give up his bullhorn and then running at the mayor, this time turned his attention on at-large Councilor Ruthzee Louijeune of Hyde Park, possibly because Louijeune stayed at the event after Wu left.
Holding a sign reading "You Will Never Silence Us!" he kept yelling at her about Covid and him being silenced and he kept trying to get closer and closer to her. But a large knot of BPD officers, always careful to keep at least an inch between them and him, and at least one of them as big as him, held him back, so he never got closer than about four feet to her. Finally, they managed to direct him off to the side of the park and away from her.