Mayor: 'Be passionate, be strong, but don't be unsafe' during mo - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Mayor: 'Be passionate, be strong, but don't be unsafe' during monument protests

A man holds a machine gun at the Jefferson Davis monument during Monday night's protest. (Photo by Michael DeMocker, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune) A man holds a machine gun at the Jefferson Davis monument during Monday night's protest. (Photo by Michael DeMocker, NOLA.com | The Times-Picayune)
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said he invites everyone to protest who wants to exercise their opinions, but he asks that everyone do so peacefully.

Monday night, at the foot of the Jefferson Davis monument, the scene was anything but peaceful. The New Orleans Police Department arrested five people.

A small fraction of the protesters threw eggs, beer cans, and even aerosol cans into the crowd.

The different sides shouted at one another for more than an hour before the police swept the crowd across Canal St.

Louisiana is an open carry state and people were out here with rifles and hand guns strapped to them.

Landrieu spoke Tuesday about the protest and this process of taking down the three remaining confederate monuments.

“Be passionate, be strong but don't be unsafe. Don't put police officers or other citizens in a position where somebody can get hurt. The decision has been made to take down the monuments, no matter what you think about me, no matter what you think about that idea, that is going to happen,” Landrieu said.

The mayor says his office is constantly receiving threats from people, but he would not go into specifics about what those threats entailed.

“We would prefer that it happen in a very peaceful environment and a very thoughtful way. But we are reacting to real life situations to make sure that we do this in a way that makes sense. As I have said they will be down sooner rather than later, but because of the security threats we are going to be really careful about how we do it,” Landrieu said.

He also talked about when the next monument will come down.

He said with the decision about the Alton Sterling, a man killed by police in Baton Rouge, possibly coming out this week, he has decided against taking the monuments down while that situation plays out.  

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