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ABC News: Protesters aren’t causing the violence

News with liberal commentary.

ABC News reported on Tuesday, September 8, 2020:

“The images are stark — people clashing with police, buildings on fire, vandalism, shootings and even killings. Some, including President Donald Trump, appear to have conflated some of the violence across the nation with protests that have sprung up in the wake of the death of George Floyd …. But an ABC News examination of a string of fatal and non-fatal confrontations that have occurred amidst the unrest has found the alleged motive for most of the carnage in those incidents are not directly linked to peaceful civil disobedience. …

“Some of the deaths have allegedly been perpetrated by suspects with their own agendas that do not include social justice, others have allegedly been carried out by agitators seeking to use the protests as cover for their own purposes, including looting and other violent acts. Some may have resulted from personal disputes.”

Read story here.

Commentary: Media reporting creates an impression of widespread violence, arson, and looting associated with the George Floyd protests, but as I’ve previously noted in this space, the BLM protests have been overwhelmingly peaceful. The media focus on the handful that aren’t because violence is more “newsworthy,” i.e., gets a bigger audience, than peaceful marches. (After all, which stories are you attracted to?)

By now it’s well known, to anyone paying attention, that protest crowds aren’t homogenous and actors with ulterior motives are mingling with legitimate protesters. (Yes, protesting per se is legal in this country, in case you don’t know.) But some people, usually those with political agendas, choose to ignore this fact.

This study further reinforces what has previously been reported on numerous occasions, namely, that many of the looters are opportunists using the protests as cover for their criminal activities, and that white supremacists and other rightwing agitators go to protests to instigate violence in an effort to discredit the protests (see, e.g., here, here, here, and here).

For example, when police finally identified the notorious “umbrella man” of the Minneapolis riots, he turned out to be a white supremacist (see that story here).

In addition, the ABC News study points out, on a case-by-case basis, that many of the highly-publicized deaths that have occurred during protests were either unrelated to the protests or are claimed to be accidental by attorneys representing alleged perpetrators.

Protests are political in nature, and politics closes people’s minds. Trump, other Republican politicians, police unions, and others opposed to police reform have relentlessly and falsely tried to propagandize BLM as a lawless movement and BLM protests as violent; Trump even designated BLM as a “terrorist organization” (it’s a movement, not an organization). The ABC News article pointed out that when Vice President Mike Pence brought up the ambush murder of a federal agent in a speech, he didn’t mention that the alleged perpetrators are rightwingers linked to the violent “Boogaloo” movement.

And let’s not forget that the perpetrators of the 1994 Oklahoma City bombing were rightwing extremists, not “BLM,” “leftists,” or “antifa,” or that in recent decades most domestic terrorism in America has come from the right, not the left, fringe of the political spectrum.

The hundreds of thousands of people, black and white, who’ve poured into America’s streets to demand an end to police killings of black people are not the violent extremists the political right tries to portray them as. They’re decent law-abiding citizens peacefully exercising their constitutional rights. The troublemakers are few, and in many cases, from the political right.

Photos: The political right comes to protests armed for war. Peaceful? Hardly.

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  1. Mark Adams #
    1

    Comrade the BLM movement is hitting cords in America that the great October Revolution stirred up. The real issues are communists are going to set up Soviets, and the people will rise and the workers will take over. Of course the Great October Revolution was purely non violent, and only enemies of the people did bad things, and those individuals needed to be reeducated.
    BLM will bring peace to the Congo yes it will! Then all those resources will be used to enrich the lives of the black under privileged throughout the world.
    All these bad police will be shut away. They have been found guilty in our proletariat, and must be found guilty in the courts. These cops have no rights and deserve only reeducation.
    Comrade Stalin will be writing our Truth Magazine. Comrade Trotsky will take from the Capitalists and imperialists. It will be a grand Soviet. In the motto of the Great Revolution: “All power to the Soviets!” It will be a glorious Red October!!!

    None of this will scare Americans. Political leaders here have used this to secure political power, and this applies to politicians in both parties. It comes down to the who you think the average Joe or Jane is in America.

  2. Roger Rabbit #
    2

    When you’re on the wrong side of an argument, call ’em “commies.” Doesn’t work anymore, but when it’s all you’ve got, it’s slightly more than nothing. On second thought, it’s nothing.



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