March 31st, 2021. Rising temperatures and sunny weather brought thousands of Berliners to the public parks. At sunset, hundred police officers evacuated the Gleidreieck park (Schöneberg-Kreuzberg) because people were “not respecting the sanitary rules of distancing and face masks”. Mainly young citizens of color were controlled, so that the situation escalated. Fleeing from police, some improvised a barricade and through bottles in direction of police- to no avail. They were pursued in the U-Bahn-Station Gleisdreieck, two were arrested (see photos). The police increased controls in the next days, leading to more tensions. On April 1st, four police officers were sprayed at with a fire extinguisher; the next day, a helicopter circled above the parc. In total, at least four people (young and racized) were arrested, sometimes violently. In an article in Neues Deutschland, I argue that racial profiling, urban inequalities and a repressive answer to the pandemic are the underlying cause for the escalation, and not a “natural agressivity” which has been ascribed to young men of color by the mainstream media.

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