Peaceful Protests Met With Violence

Eight days ago George Floyd was murdered by four Minneapolis policemen: two held his body in place, one stood guard to make sure no one would help him, and the fourth used his knee to strangle him. Only one has been arrested.

Derek Chauvin, the man who strangled Floyd, had 18 complaints on his official record. Only two ended in discipline, which including official letters of reprimand; details are not publicly available. Think how easily all this could have been avoided if only police were accountable for their actions.

Two weeks ago tRump’s base donned pimped up rifles and munitions to storm state buildings in protest of face masks, screaming about their constitutional rights (to get a haircut) as they threatened the lives of governors whose measures to control the spread of a pandemic, (by closing beaches and bars,) interfered with their “liberty,” the police were very patient.

Since then, unarmed protesters and reporters with their crews have come under attack by local police and the National Guard. Protesting police brutality has been met with more police brutality.

The first amendment of the constitution outlines five guaranteed freedoms: freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, the right to assembly, and the right to petition the government. All of these freedoms have been breached by this administration.

US Press Freedom Tracker, a non-profit project, is investigating more than 100 “press freedom violations” that occurred in the course of only three days of protests, most involving physical attacks.

When a CNN reporter and his crew were arrested in Minneapolis while live on camera, it seemed like a mistake. Clearly, it was not, because police attacks on the press have escalated. Freelance photographer, Linda Tirado was shot in the eye with a rubber bullet while covering protests. Her eye could not be saved.

Another CNN reporter on Lafayette Square says on air that a DC police officer struck his cameraman with a baton, even though he was holding his camera and credentials.

A message to the press on Sunday from Cleveland police: “No media is allowed downtown unless they are inside their place of business. Period.”

These incidents keep piling up.

Minneapolis police not only arrested a reporter on-air, but they also released a false autopsy, and now over a week after George Floyd’s murder, three of those responsible for his death remain free.

The violent response by Minneapolis officials has been mirrored across the nation, with police driving into crowds of people, riding a horse over a demonstrator, beating them with batons, bombing them with tear gas, firing on hem with rubber bullets, shooting paint canisters at people on their porches.

Even those of us who expected the worst possible outcome from the psychopath in the White House are stunned at this abuse of power: his use of the military against American citizens and his wink nudge speech signaling to his base to load their weapons. The GOP has built this monster to Putin’s specifications, and he has turned the U.S. into an unrecognizable wasteland.

*Photo credit: Jonathan Ernst, The White House 5/31/2020

tRump has shown a disregard for the constitution, picking and choosing amendments- 1st bad, 2nd good, but to be fair, he’s never read any of it or cared to have it explained to him. His willingness to use the military to attack peaceful protesters isn’t really surprising, what surprises me is that the military will follow orders that go against the oath they took. The man with the codes, the five-time draft dodger, has turned the sons and daughters of America against peaceful protesters. On June 01, 2020, he had a crowd dispersed without warning, using tear gas because he wanted access to a boarded-up church to use as a backdrop for a photo op that mirrors one of his heroes.

These images that seem like they’d be from another time and place, and stories of unnecessary violence, and physical attacks on the press of this last week, are impossible to process.

Meanwhile, thousands of protesters have been imprisoned for exercising their constitutional rights. But police murderers are free.

A week after George Floyd’s killing, minutes after midnight, David McAtee, a black man in Louisville, was standing with a small group of protesters in the parking lot adjacent to the restaurant he owns. The group heard what they believe was a shot from a car driving down the street, and then they were fired on by a local police officer and a member of the national guard. McAtee was killed.

The police report claims the group fired on them first. It seems a review of police body-cam footage would solve this mystery, but as Mayor Greg Fischer announced later in the day, every officers’ body camera had been deactivated before the shooting.

I think it’s safe to assume that all the police officers who have been videotaped and photographed across the country this past week, with their badge numbers hidden under black tape, also deactivated their body cameras.

It’s much easier to build a false narrative when there isn’t video footage that shows the truth.

On Monday, June 01, we learned that an independent medical examiner, Dr. Michael Baden, confirmed what we all saw with our own eyes, George Floyd was murdered.

“He was in good health. The cause of death is asphyxia compression of the neck and back. He couldn’t breathe and that is homicidal.” Dr. Michael Baden said — No underlying health problems contributed, and Floyd had no underlying health problem that contributed to his death.

The results are in direct opposition to those of the Hennepin County autopsy report, which found heart disease, hypertension, and “potential intoxicants” contributed to George Floyd’s death.

This orchestrated coverup might have worked if not for street cameras that show Floyd did not resist arrest and the several bystanders’ videos that documented the murder from every angle. Corruption is common and it is guarded by corrupt union leaders and elected officials who are paid with taxpayer dollars.

Trump’s hate speech has signaled his White Supremacist base to take matters into their own hands.

On Sunday another unarmed black man was murdered during a protest, this one in Omaha, Nebraska. White bar owner Jake Gardiner who has a criminal record shot and killed protester James Shurlock. Police did not file charges against Gardiner who says he was acting in self-defense.

Looting, seen in this photo, appears to be sanctioned by the police.

Much of the looting appears to have been caused by undercover police officers, and tRump supporters. Their motivation is to blame demonstrators and justify their own aggression.

The right-wing news organization, the Federalist, denies reports that many white supremacists have been taken into custody since protests began.

Trump continues to rile his base.

tRump supporter Bogdan Vechirco drove his tanker into a crowd of protesters on I35 West in Minneapolis. It is a miracle that no one was killed. Vechirco was pulled from the vehicle by protesters.

Campaign finance records show that he has donated money to support President Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee. 

Another tRump supporter came to a protest armed with a hunting bow, ready to shoot at protesters. Thankfully he was jumped by several protesters before the arrow was released.

One of the first properties destroyed by looters was the CNN building in Atlanta. Protesters against police violence would have no reason to attack CNN, tRump’s sworn enemy.

Trump spoke to Putin on Monday morning. Just before noon, he called state governors and mayors. That call consisted of shouts, cursing, and blame for making him look weak. He called them “fools” and ordered to “use force,” “dominate.” He encouraged them to use the military to deal with protests, calling the current national crisis to a “war” urging the governors to “fight back.”

tRump’s voice can be heard in released audio:

“You’ve got to arrest people, you have to track people, you have to put them in jail for 10 years and you’ll never see this stuff again,”

Later he held a press conference. When asked about the protests and police brutality on Monday, Trump said:

“I’m going to win the election easily. The economy is going to start to get good & then great, better than ever before. I’m getting more judges appointed by the week.”

Trump is following the lead of his fellow dictators. He is labeling anyone who speaks against him as ANTIFA, which means anti-fascist. We are all anti-fascist, are we not? He wants the phantom menace, ANTIFA, labeled a terrorist organization. Designating demonstrators, (the public, ) as terrorists gives him all the justification he needs to order military force against peaceful protesters.

Last week “fascism” meant being asked to wear a face mask to protect others from disease.

This week we have an administration that has declared war against its citizens, sending military tanks through streets, bomb unarmed crowds with tear gas, shoot rubber bullets at American citizens.

This is what rubber bullets do to their targets.

During Trump’s speech, before his press conference on Monday afternoon, he promised to use the full force of the military against protesters, and he spoke of the second amendment. The right to bear arms had nothing to do with the situation at hand. It was a thinly veiled message to his white nationalist base of supporters. His message could have come straight from the Kremlin. This is what Putin put tRump in the White House to do, destroy us from within.

18 thoughts on “Peaceful Protests Met With Violence

  1. The man is nuts, Lydia. He also said, during that phone call, that Minneapolis is a laughing stock–that the world is laughing at Minneapolis. What is he watching? What is he listening to? Laughing? He is delusional. The world is in shock as to what is going on in our country. As are we.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And that’s the thing? We were living with people thinking like tRump and never knew it? Or they never knew it until he stirred the pot enough to reveal all this hatred and violence? It is exactly like watching a train wreck in slow motion.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. We’ve seen Putin murder political opponents and change laws to give himself a lifetime appointment. Trump has been advised by him since before he was a candidate.
        After this week nothing will shock me. Junior thinks he’s next in line. And Ivanka has been practicing her photo ops. 🙄
        The only question I have is- when do we start speaking Russian?

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh my… Thank you for this informative piece, I so sad… I am researching and taking action from Canada as much as I can. Sending love and light x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Democrats are no better; why are they sitting on their hands? All they do is complain and if the GOP has no compliance to laws then why do the democrats ‘play nice’ all the time? Why don’t they exercise some independence and find a way to deal with this lunatic? …there’s plenty of blame to go around.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank you for that. I just feel that they are riding this wave for some obscure motive(s) and it’s way out of control; this could all backfire it they are “waiting” or biding their time for some momentous event.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I am heartbroken by what happened to George Floyd and the reaction from the police. I know that now all four of the coward thugs have been arrested but I wonder if justice will be served. This is all distracting from the Pandemic which hasn’t gone away of course. I don’t understand why nothing can be done about This Administration. Why is everyone so afraid of doing what is right. It is definitely hard to keep the faith Lydia and I thank you for your reporting.

    Liked by 1 person

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