After allegedly attacking a veteran in a wheelchair, Antifa activists were beaten by pro-police supporters who had participated in a Back the Blue rally in Fort Collins, Colorado.
According to reports, the Back the Blue rally outside the Fort Collins Police Services building was met by a number of peaceful Black Lives Matter (BLM) counterprotesters who had taken part in an earlier demonstration at Colorado State University (CSU).
The two sides were initially separated by a street until some of the pro-police demonstrators crossed it to have a dialogue with the BLM protesters, according to a CSU alumnus and frequent speaker at local BLM protests.
Those talks were described by The Rocky Mountain Collegian as “productive conversations” until another group of counterprotesters dressed in all black like Antifa supporters showed up 20 minutes later.
Video footage then shows pro-police demonstrators “marching” a number of Antifa supporters out of a residential neighborhood near the Police Services building. It is unclear how or why the Antifa supporters entered the neighborhood.
Quite quickly, the “march” devolved to a melee in a ditch outside the neighborhood, sparked, according to pro-police demonstrators, by an attack by Antifa activists on a pro-police veteran in a wheelchair holding an American flag.
Elsewhere, in Portland, Antifa rioters entered a residential neighborhood Saturday night, threatening residents who dared to look out the window and promising to burn down their buildings.
The rioters made their way to the Portland police union building where they smashed a window and set a fire inside the building. It was the third time they had broken into the building and the second time they set it on fire.
What are the takeaways from this weekend of violence?
- Antifa is getting increasingly bold, now entering residential areas. However, what has become clear is that it will not be met with impunity. While residents in Portland may have stayed ensconced in their apartments, it is reasonable to assume that more and more everyday citizens, especially those who have exercised their Second Amendment Rights and have arms, will not be putting up with gangs of black-clad twenty-somethings hiding behind face masks and helmets invading their neighborhoods.
- Police being told to stand down will have consequences on all sides – and none constructive. It is a sad statement that the best argument levied at the protesters by Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler to get them to stop the violence that has wracked his city for close to 75 days is that they will be props for President Trump’s reelection campaign.
“Don’t think for a moment that if you are participating in this activity that you are not being a prop for the reelection campaign of Donald Trump, because you absolutely are,” Wheeler recently said. “You are creating the B-roll film that will be used in ads nationally to help Donald Trump during his campaign. You don’t want to be part of that? Then don’t show up.”
After nights of horrific violence in which Wheeler clearly instructed the police to stand down, this is the only reason a mayor can give to violent protesters to restore his city to some resemblance of law and order?
- Portland (and its mayor and governor) will soon find itself slapped with an enormously expensive class action suit by residents and businesses charging that the city and its elected leaders failed in its obligations to protect their lives and property. This type of legal action is already being taken in Seattle against those who facilitated the disastrous CHOP zone.
- Portland and other cities allowing rampant rioting and violence will most likely see an erosion of their tax base as fed-up, high-paying businesses and private citizens flee from these urban centers, much like what has happened in New York, as made public by NY’s Governor Cuomo in his pathetic plea for (rich) New Yorkers to come back to the city. (Although the exodus is being blamed on corona by the mainstream media, the destruction of Manhattan and its iconic stores – including Macy’s and Bergdorf Goodman — shopping streets and neighborhoods provide little incentive for anyone to return.)
- Allowing demonstrators to destroy public and private property will also bring out armed groups of citizens. In the absence of basic police protection, they will take matters into their own hands.
Will the country eventually divide? That is really a question of how much local and state politicians will be willing to play games with the public for their political ends.
As we have seen, it doesn’t take a large part of the population to create seismic disturbances. But the key to escalating or squelching these disturbances lies with the politicians.
While the events of this summer are not encouraging, a recent Pew poll indicated that 74 percent of adult Americans said that funding for police should either stay the same or increase (including 65 percent of adult Black Americans who said the same).
It will be up to this vast majority to decide with their vote whether or not to keep such politicians in office who facilitate violence or replace them with those whose political views are more in line with the majority.
Otherwise, the changes to America as we know it over the next number of years could be drastic. Until this time in history, we have been a country united by the definitional principles as delineated in the constitution (however sorely tested they have been).
The argument can even be made that, considering the diversity of the American people (in terms of ethnic groups, religion, race, etc.), those principles are the sole factor that have made such diverse groups into a cohesive country.
Although grammar is usually not the most telling factor of the status of a country, it is interesting to note that before the Civil War, the United States was referred to in the plural (meaning the emphasis was on the fact that the country was a conglomeration of individual states. In truth, this was the basis of the argument of the southern states, who wanted to remain in the Union while being able to continue to hold slaves.
After the Civil War, the United States was referred to in the singular, as we do today. However, the precipice we have been brought to by a minority of extremists could easily revert the nation to its plural status – and its eventual dissolution.
The choice is ours.
EDITORS NOTE: This Clarion Project column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.