Skip to main content

Awful Design of Pro-Police “Back the Blue” Mural Makes It Comically Impossible to Read

Mural painters in Tampa, Florida are encouraging us all to Bock the Blue. Oh wait, I’m sorry, I’m getting information that the mural actually says … Heck the Blue? Beck? Backalacky the Blue? Okay, no one knows what the hell this is supposed to be. Maybe something to do with Björk? Tough to say.

Recommended Videos

This mural makes me feel like I can’t even read. I guess that’s what happens when your terrible politics piss off all the good artists. (Just gotta Bop the Blue, amirite?)

Not only that, but painting it as such an obvious, direct response to Black Lives Matter protests and murals really just sends the message that the police are in opposition to black lives, which is probably not what they were going for. We also don’t need to hear about supporting the police right now at all. The cops who killed Breonna Taylor have still not been arrested, and that’s just the very TIP of that iceberg.

The mural is not only in poor taste and just visually horrendous, but it was also technically illegal because the permits had yet to be approved. While the paperwork was in process, the Back the Blue crew just went ahead and blocked off the road on their own and painted the mural anyway, as organizer Kristen Krutz told the Tampa Bay Times, “because Black Lives Matter has murals all over the city that say Black Lives Matter, and they were not permitted.”

As Creative Loafing points out, that’s not true of the similar, if actually legible, street-width Black Lives Matter murals that were, indeed, city sanctioned, as they were in many other cities. They also note that the mural may run afoul of other regulations about covering the street’s usual markings, including its double yellow lines. Okay, cops, what are you going to do about the Back the Block crew? Is this one of those “graffiti that counts as violence” scenarios, or nah?

Either way, Twitter did what Twitter does best and mocked the hell out of this mural, because come on. It’s impossible to figure out what it says.

So, hopefully someone paints over this eyesore soon and it’s never spoken of again.

(image: NBC)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site

 —The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]


Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh.

Filed Under:

Follow The Mary Sue: