Protestors have the right to voice out their concerns and grievances. However, when they start to destroy property, what do they become? Protesters vs protectors? Let’s talk more about it below!
Protesters vs Protectors
The American media is well known for sensationalizing current events while minimizing or altogether ignoring important elements of their stories.
A quick scan of the articles circulating about the George Floyd protests would have you believe that outnumbered, angry police officers are facing off with violent protesters determined to burn their own cities to the ground in the name of change.
The officers are purported to immediately resort to tear gas, rubber bullets, and even running over protesters with their cars.
While there is no doubt that disturbing images are coming out of the cross-country rioting, there is much more to the story. If you look closely at timelines, local flyers, and social media posts, and citizen reactions in affected areas, you’ll find a much more complicated story.
4 Distinct Groups
It’s important to make the distinction that Protesters seeking to enact change are gathering peacefully. Many bring their children, wear masks, and keep a respectful 6’ distance from their cohorts.
Protests typically occur in the afternoon and in authorized public places. Many organized protests pull the proper permits for gatherings. After several hours, the Protesters go home.
As the Protesters leave, the Rioters and Looters begin to show up. They may start to appear during protests to create an overlap, and prior to the violence and destruction, they begin with vandalism and more aggressive behavior.
Make no mistake; these mobs are organized separately, even though they masquerade as part of the BLM movement. They light fires, destroy property, and make off with merchandise until the early hours of the morning.
Many police forces were found kneeling beside their neighbors in agreement that change needs to come. Their approach was simply to protect government property and to protect citizens when protests moved into roadways.
In some instances, police forces advanced using tear gas and rubber bullets. Whether these efforts were warranted or not is up for debate.
In response to the deeply destructive late-night mobs, several cities formed coalitions of armed locals, who worked together to keep their cities safe at night. With police forces overwhelmed, these groups took it upon themselves to stand guard outside of local businesses.
While many were in contact with police, they were not contracted or directed by them.
Look at the Whole Picture
It would be easy to divide the people into groups of Protesters/Rioters and Protectors: Police and Armed Citizen Guards. But that division would not show the whole picture.
It would not show the police standing in solidarity with protesters, equally ready for change.
It would not show the Protesters who are also black business owners, standing guard at their own storefronts armed with rifles.
As you form your opinions and make your judgments on current events, make an effort to read and watch reporting from independent news sources. Although they take longer to find, you will be able to formulate an opinion that takes into account the whole picture.
Now Is a Good Time to be Armed
One thing you will not hear directly in the news is how important it is to be armed at a time like this. Everyone who has successfully defended their home or business has been visibly armed and trained to use deadly force.
At the end of the day, the only way to stop a bad person with a gun is a good person with a gun.
What do you think about the protests? We’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments section!
- Know Your Rights: Gun Laws Can Vary by County During States of Emergency
- Armed Citizen Guards Form Against Looters Across America
- Peaceful Protests Turn Violent: States of Emergency and Curfews Imposed Across the Country