from the news:
“I took six rubber bullets, but do you know what didn’t happen to me?” Elizabeth Ferris, a 36-year-old Georgetown University student, told The Washington Post. “No one kneeled on my neck.”
Ashley Gary of Minneapolis said: “We’ve been through Jamar Clark, we’ve been through Philando Castile, and there was no justice whatsoever. We’re tired of it, we are very tired. My son, he’s 16 and six feet tall, and I don’t want him to be taken as somebody bad because he’s a bigger black man.”
“I came out peacefully to show my support, and the police are aiming right at me,” Mariana Solaris, a 20-year-old from San Bernardino, Calif., told The Los Angeles Times, after the police fired foam pellets at her. “I saw this on the news earlier tonight,” she said, “and I thought, ‘No way is it really like that out there with the police.’ So I came out to see. And, yeah, it’s really like that.”
NPR reports how peaceful protesters, clergy, and journalists were injured when the president ordered a pathway violently cleared to a nearby church before curfew would have cleared the street. “While live on air, Myers was struck in the chest by a riot shield and Brace was clubbed [in the back while running away] with a police baton,” Channel 7 News reports. “I want to acknowledge the loss of property, but in no way equate it with the loss of life,” the pastor of the church said. “I want to be a church that stands in solidarity with those who are making peaceful protest.” [The president did not enter the church or offer anything resembling a Christian message.]
Marc Polymeropoulos, who formerly ran CIA operations in Europe and Asia, was among several former agency officials who recoiled at images of Trump hoisting a Bible in front of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington. “It reminded me of what I reported on for years in the third world,” Polymeropoulos said on Twitter. Referring to the despotic leaders of Iraq, Syria and Libya, he said: “Saddam. Bashar. Qaddafi. They all did this.”
Heather Cox Richardson reports Democratic Senator Bob Casey of Pennsylvania tweeted: “I want to be super clear about what happened tonight in Washington: The President of the United States deployed tear-gas, rubber bullets and military personnel on peaceful protesters so that he could cross the street for a photo op. There is no excuse.” Democratic Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon straight up said “the fascist speech Donald Trump just delivered verged on a declaration of war against American citizens. I fear for our country tonight and will not stop defending America against Trump’s assault.”
“Republican Senator Tom Cotton of Arkansas, a former Army captain who now sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee, was on board with the sentiments in it. He called for Trump to invoke the 1807 Insurrection Act, which permits the president to override the restriction against using the military in domestic situations in extreme situations. Cotton tweeted: ‘Anarchy, rioting, and looting needs to end tonight. If local law enforcement is overwhelmed and needs backup, let’s see how tough these Antifa terrorists are when they’re facing off with the 101st Airborne Division. We need to have zero tolerance for this destruction…. And, if necessary, the 10th Mountain, 82nd Airborne, 1st Cav, 3rd Infantry—whatever it takes to restore order. No quarter for insurrectionists, anarchists, rioters, and looters.’
“Readers pointed out that the concept of ‘no quarter,”\’ that is, killing those who surrender in a battle, is a war crime. Trump tweeted that Cotton was “\’100% correct.”\’ Cotton later tried to walk back the comments by resorting to a dictionary definition, but David A. French, a lawyer, military officer, Iraq veteran, and journalist, pointed out that Cotton graduated from Harvard Law School, and certainly knew that military ops defines ‘no quarter very clearly, and prohibits it.’ ”
Some politicians, rather than focusing on peace, are doing their best to start a war. I participated in peaceful protests against the American war in Vietnam in the 60s on. I was a teenager but I recognized who belonged to the anti-war movement in Seattle and who was dropping by to score political points. I saw the FBI suits taking photos at a march and I saw the unknown white men who appeared to be doing their best to start a riot during a massive peaceful post-Kent State march. They tried to blend in while attempting to lead others into actions that would justify police interference. These white men were not local, they were not looking for peace, they were scoring political points, and they were not successful that day.
In the midst of this current understandable anger and grief and speaking out, there are again “white men who appeared to be doing their best to start a riot.” Some of them are reported in the streets, triggering looting and other violence. Some of them are in the White House.
I felt better about America when I read this: “Police officers are joining protesters for prayers and hugs in several US cities” It’s not like I have not always been taught to respect the law and law enforcement. Because I was and I have.