Patrisse Khan-Cullors, the self-described Marxist leader of Black Lives Matter, has defended herself amid criticisms for going on a real estate spending spree — in which she snagged four high-end homes for $3.2 million in the US alone.
Cullors, who recently bought a $1.4 million home in an exclusive LA neighborhood where the vast majority of residents are white, pushed back in a lengthy post on Instagram.
“This movement began as, and will always remain, a love letter to black people. Three words: Black Lives Matter, serve as a reminder to Black people that we are human and deserve to live vibrant and full lives,” the 37-year-old wrote.
“I’ve worked multiple jobs across many organizations my entire life. I’m also a published author, writer, producer, professor, public speaker, and performance artist. I love my work in all of these areas and I work hard to provide for my family,” she continued.
The property Khan-Cullors bought near the Malibu beaches is located in Topanga Canyon, where 88 percent of the residents are white.
After the sale of the home was made public, the BLM leader — who signed a multi-platform deal with Warner Bros in October — was lambasted on social media.
Hawk Newsome, the head of Black Lives Matter Greater New York City, which is not affiliated with Khan-Cullors’ Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation, called for “an independent investigation” to find out how the global network spends its money.
The political and social movement, which began as hashtag in response to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the 2012 shooting of Trayvon Martin, took in more than $90 million last year — despite the movement being splintered by ongoing feuds about the lack of funding.
But Khan-Cullors insisted she does not receive a salary or benefits from Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation, “period.”
“This effort to discredit and harass me and my family is not new nor is it acceptable. It has taken away from where the focus should be — ending white supremacy,” she added.
“You may not like or agree with me. I have definitely made mistakes. I own up to that. I apologize for the mistakes I have made and I work hard at practicing my abolitionist values.”
Black Lives Matter also issued a forceful statement in her defense, calling attacks against her a continuation of “a tradition of terror by white supremacists against black activists.”
“Patrisse Cullors is the Executive Director of Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation (BLMGNF). She serves in this role in a volunteer capacity and does not receive a salary or benefits,” the group said in a statement.
“Patrisse has received a total of $120,000 since the organization’s inception in 2013, for duties such as serving as spokesperson and engaging in political education work. Patrisse did not receive any compensation after 2019.”
The group dismissed the criticism as merely “narratives” pushed by “right-wing forces intent on reducing the support and influence” of the movement.
“This right-wing offensive not only puts Patrisse, her child and her loved ones in harm’s way, it also continues a tradition of terror by [W]hite supremacists against Black activists,” the organization said.