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Effort To Unite Police & Community Leads To Backlash

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - The new CEO of the Dallas Mavericks attempted to bring breakfast to police early Wednesday in an effort to recognize the lives of officers and civilians that were lost during the week of July 7, 2016 -- when an ambush on police occurred after a peaceful protest in downtown Dallas.

Things did not go as planned.

Mavs CEO Cynthia Marshall wants everyone to wear black and blue on Wednesday, and tweet using #BB725, all in an effort to promote unity between local communities and law enforcement officers. But the call for unity is still making some people upset.

That is because the grassroots effort also recognizes two civilians who were killed at the hands of police that week.

Marshall started this movement two years ago, after five Dallas police officers were killed during the ambush attack, which came after a protest over the deaths of two black men, Alton Sterling and Philando Castile. Both men were killed by police officers in other cities across the country during that same week.

According to Marshall, those two men died because they were black. The five Dallas officers who died were killed because they wore blue. Those colors are the basis of Marshall's movement, but the Dallas Police Department has stated that some officers are offended by the combination of police deaths and police shootings.

Despite the controversy, Marshall and a group of about 10 people early Wednesday held a moment of silence outside of the Dallas Police Department headquarters. That was supposed to be followed by a breakfast and a donation of $7,250 to the department.

Instead, the group was turned away. The Dallas Police Department would not allow Marshall to come inside for the meal or the donation presentation. A police contact told Marshall that this was due to controversy that her effort had created within the department.

"It's unfortunate that someone is offended because we have young black men who are racially profiled and getting killed," said Marshall.

While they support Marshall's effort to bring the community together, a number of Dallas officers were outraged by an mass email from the Mavericks to DPD explaining the 7-25 event by saying, "2 died because they were black, 5 died because they wore blue."

Officers found that description offensive and wondered why B-B-7-2-5 doesn't also recognize the three Baton Rouge officers who died a week after the Dallas ambush. 

Still, others like Former DPD Chief David Brown endorsed the movement on Twitter as good for the community. 

"It seems that as long as we are honoring blue we can proceed with the fact that we have black mixed in appears to be a problem that's actually offensive to me," Marshall said.

Marshall and her group then took the food and money to the Boys and Girls Club of Dallas and gave it all to the kids. "I was very surprised they were bringing breakfast," stated program manager Alma Jimenez. "That in itself is very big for close to 200 kids, let alone a donation."

The children were given blue wristbands and treated to donuts and Whataburger tacos.

Marshall also gave a check for DPD's youth foundation to the Boys and Girls Club. 

Officers told CBS11 they support the mission but not language behind Marshall's movement. 

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