Fact Check: Did a BLM co-founder declare support for Donald Trump? Viral Mark Fisher video claim explored
On November 28, a BLM activist named Mark Fisher appeared on the Fox News talk show, Fox & Friends. He was introduced as the co-founder and leader of Black Lives Matter Rhode Island (BLM RI) by host Lawrence Jones.
As part of his interview, Mark Fisher declared his support for Donald Trump in the 2024 presidential election while simultaneously condemning the Democratic Party.
"Personally, I love the man [Trump]. I mean, how could you not like a real man? How could you not relate to someone like that?”
As soon as Fisher’s interview became viral, he met with criticism from fellow BLM advocates who pointed out that former President Donald Trump once called the Black Lives Matter movement a “symbol of hate,” among other derogatory things, as reported by the Business Insider.
However, Donald Trump took to Truth Social and said he was “very honored” to have the support of Fisher and BLM.
Meanwhile, Gary Dantzler, the current head of Black Lives Matter Rhode Island revealed that Mark Fisher was neither a BLM co-founder nor a leader, but simply a paid advocate who even got fired/ demoted in the recent time, as per Providence Journal.
Mark Fisher was once an advocate for BLM RI
According to Gary Dantzler’s statement to the Providence Journal, Mark Fisher was never a leader or co-founder of Black Lives Matter Rhode Island but was once an advocate of the group for a few months in 2021 when it first got registered as a nonprofit with the IRS, under Dantzler’s leadership.
“Mark Fisher stated he was one of the co-founders of BLM. Absolutely not. He was a respected advocate for BLM. That’s it. And he was paid and somewhere he got fired and demoted,” Dantzler stated.
As per the media outlet, at present, there is no Black Lives Matter group in Rhode Island or elsewhere with Fisher listed as a co-founder or leader in the IRS nonprofit database.
However, he was once listed as the director of BLM RI in its articles of incorporation with the state in 2020, but a 2022 annual report of the group obtained by Providence Journal reveals that Fisher’s name was removed that year.
Business Insider, on the other hand, discovered that Fisher was listed as the founder of BLM Incorporated, an organization assisting the Black Lives Matter movement in Maryland, but not affiliated with any recognized groups.
Meanwhile, in a tweet from late October, Mark Fisher shared a photo of himself wearing a Black Lives Matter Rhode Island t-shirt and posing with a few others wearing similar tops. It was captioned “BLM things.”
A separate organization called Black Lives Matter Rhode Island Political Action Committee or BLM RI PAC also issued a statement to the Providence Journal clarifying Mark Fisher “is not and has never been affiliated with our organization.”
"The views expressed by Mr. Fisher in the referenced Fox News segment do not reflect the values or beliefs of BLM RI PAC… Any statements or actions attributed to him should not be conflated with our organization,” the group stated.
Exploring, in brief, the Mark Fisher controversy
Mark Fisher, who was once an activist associated with Black Lives Matter Rhode Island, recently made headlines after he showed support for Donald Trump at a recent Fox News show, Fox & Friends. At the same time, he also denounced the Democrats.
“We’re not stupid...We understand when someone’s for us and when someone is not, and it’s obvious that the Democratic Party is not for us. A lot of people are misinformed. They don’t really understand because they don’t educate themselves on Donald Trump as a person and his history,” he said in the now-viral interview.
Fisher further added how he “loved” Trump personally and could “relate” to a “real man” like him and endorsed the former President in the upcoming race to the White House.
The next day, Trump took to Truth Social to shower gratitude on Fisher’s statement, calling him “a great guy” and stating how they interacted. Trump also added that he was “very honored to have his [Fisher’s] and BLM’s support” before claiming that he did “more for Black people than any other President.” The statement was in stark contrast to his previous remarks about the movement.
Meanwhile, Mark Fisher has come under fire from Black Lives Matter advocates who condemned him for using false credentials. Fox News too faced criticism for spreading misinformation.
For instance, Gary Dantzler told the Providence Journal that he was “really disgusted” by Fisher’s promotion of Trump and accused him of “trying to hijack the BLM movement of RI.”
Likewise, the Black Lives Matter Foundation deplored Fisher’s remarks via a statement issued to Business Insider. It called Fisher “an imposter” and his alleged organization “illegitimate” and argued he should not be recognized as a leader:
“This is a publicity stunt. The right-wing continues to use and amplify fringe Black voices to create an idea of broad support for their corrupt candidates… Anyone can start an organization and add the words Black Lives Matter to it in an attempt to muddy the waters of our movement, as Mark Fisher did.”
The statement also slammed Trump calling him a “terrorist who committed treason and tried to subvert American democracy.” Additionally, it clarified that Trump was “no friend to Black people seeking to live in a just society.”
Angela Angel, the senior advisor for Black Lives Matter PAC told the Grio that Fisher and his BLM Incorporation in Maryland was built “for the purpose of defrauding and confusing people,” and claimed that Donald Trump has been exploiting the Black community for decades, as per Yahoo! News.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is competing with Donald Trump for the Republican presidential nomination, also called out Fisher, the Black Lives Matter movement, and Trump.
It is noteworthy this was not the first time Mark Fisher made similar comments. As per Providence Journal, on November 6, he appeared on the Kim Iversen Show and declared his support for Donald Trump.
He said President Joe Biden was “a deep disappointment” and expressed his dislike for Vice President Kamala Harris. He also defended the people involved in the January 6 Capitol riot.