Vaccination foes target homes of L.A. City Council members
Hours after a rally in Santa Monica against COVID-19 vaccination mandates on Sunday, protesters opposed to required inoculations showed up at the homes of two Los Angeles City Council members.
Protesters banged on the door of City Council President Nury Martinez’s Sun Valley home around 7:30 p.m., Martinez told The Times. The group also tried to harass Martinez’s neighbors, she said.
Protesters opposed to vaccine mandates also visited the home of Councilman Mitch O’Farrell, who represents Echo Park, Silver Lake and nearby neighborhoods, on Sunday night, O’Farrell spokesman Dan Halden said. He didn’t provide any more details.
A spokesman for the Los Angeles Police Department didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about the incidents.
Hundreds of people descended onto a park near the Santa Monica Pier on Sunday to rally against vaccination mandates. Organizers led the group in prayers, gave speeches, waved flags supporting former President Trump and talked up the recall attempts against several Democrats, including Gov. Gavin Newsom and Los Angeles County Dist. Atty. George Gascón.
Held in a park off a busy stretch of Ocean Avenue, the gathering appeared half political rally and half religious gathering.
Health experts have said the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective and save lives. Data released by Los Angeles County last week showed that hospitals are seeing a greater number of unvaccinated people who are younger and otherwise healthy.
At one point during Sunday’s rally, a man held up a sign that he said showed the home address of each City Council member, according to video posted on social media. If the City Council voted for a vaccine mandate, protesters would visit their home, the man said, according to the video.
“Whoever votes yes, we’re coming to your door,” the man said, according to the video. “We’re coming to your home. You want to intimidate us? We’re coming to you now.”
At another point, he said that if the vaccine mandates passes, “civil war is coming, get your guns.”
Martinez suggested Monday that there was a link between the release of council members’ addresses and the people who showed up at her door.
“All of this is simply because we’re asking people to wear a mask and get vaccinated,” she said.
The Los Angeles City Council this month voted to direct city attorneys to draft a law that would require people to have at least one dose of a vaccine to visit indoor restaurants, bars, gyms, shops and movie theaters. The plan has not been finalized, and the proposed law still needs approval from the full council.
Demonstrators of various political stripes have targeted L.A. politicians at their homes over the last 18 months. Those angry about face masks and rules requiring businesses to close their doors held regular protests last year outside Getty House, the official residence of L.A.’s mayor.
Martinez’s home was also targeted in June. Security video and news reports show that a white liquid was poured over Martinez’s car, while the phrase “end the sweeps” was written on her driveway, a reference to city sweeps of homeless encampments that require people to remove their tents.
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