But the cops made no effort to arrest peacefully. From that first arrest pinning someone down, it was about overwhelming force. When the tear gas comes 80 seconds later, no one has been warned. This is not an attempt to safeguard people. The cops were safe inside the building. It’s not an attempt to safeguard property – they spend more money on the defense than they could possibly spend on cleaning bill or replacing a door. This was an effort to punish. And punish they did.
That first effort sent tear gas just barely across the street from the courthouse, and caused people to pull back no more than 3 blocks. They did eventually advance tear gas through most of that park block, but except for my and my slow-ass self, they appeared to be shooting the tear gas behind the line of retreat just to keep people moving west, not to trap them (or at least most of them) in the smoke. The front ranks were only a block and a half away from the courthouse while the first round of gas was clearing. They maintained a presence there for a half an hour, then slowly returned to the
Fed BuildingJustice Center for a bit of organizing, speaking and chanting. It took me longer to return close to the front because I had been so badly affected by the gas.
She’s at ground zero of what I feel is a test run for outright authoritarianism in the United States. We cannot tolerate masked officers in unmarked vehicles snatching up civilians and detaining them without charges. Nor should we tolerate the officers’ attempts to brutally dominate a population of a city. With Trump deploying officers to other cities, what is happening there, could very happen in other US cities.
So I’ll be reading Crip Dyke’s accounts, and I hope you will too.