#BlackLivesMatter protest blocking Mass Ave. and Access to Union Station

BLM

Phil reports with the photo above: “#BlackLivesMatter protest blocking Mass Ave. at Stanton Park.”

Below Justin reports:

“they’re blocking access to Union Station this morning via Mass Ave, won’t even let buses go through.”

BLM BLock

128 Comment

  • justinbc

    WaPo just confirmed several people have chained themselves to an outdoor stair railing of the national Fraternal Order of Police.

  • I was wondering why they’d be wanting to impede approach to Capitol when all the Repubs are out of town. Looks like they’re there to protest the Fraternal Order of Police. HQ is just to the right in that pic.

    • I feel like BLM are equal opportunity protesters. They’ve been at as many Democratic events as they have Republican. Like any protest movement, publicity matters and it seems like they go where the cameras will be.
      .
      Protesting the FOP seems like a pretty natural target for them.

  • Are there more there than just in these pictures? It looks like there are only about 15 people there

  • Glad I don’t take the D6 to work anymore.

  • Cool! I like seeing civil disobedience now and then. Hoping everything remains calm and peaceful.

    • Nothing says democracy like a small number of people trying to force their opinion on everyone through extra-legal means.

      • One of key features of a working democracy is to give minority groups protection and the means to have their grievances address. Since the system doesn’t care about (some) cops killing innocent civilians, then we have come to this

        • Thank, Los. I believe that when the systems we in place, and which we might ordinarily encourage people to go through to address their grievances have failed over and over again because of the corrupting, festering wound of racism, then people must find another channel for their voices to be heard. I think civil disobedience is completely appropriate.

        • So I guess since the number of people killed in confrontations with cops has consistently gone down, democracy is working?

      • Oh right, “all men are created equal” isn’t enshrined in our country’s Declaration of Independence or anything….sorry it’s inconvenient for a “small number of people” to point out when we’re not living up to our founding promises.

      • So, I suppose you would have felt that way about the original colonists who rebelled, and would rather be a British subject?

      • And nothing says white supremacy like a large number of cops trying to force their biases on black people through extrajudicial violence. Your point?

  • #gettingtoworkontimematters

  • I assume this is illegal, correct?

    • Sure, but I don’t think the protesters care? It isn’t exactly civil disobedience if you’re obeying the law.

      • Let me re-phrase my comment (which was worded poorly):
        If you chain yourself to the FOP HQ, you are breaking the law (trespassing, failure to disperse), but probably not pissing off too much of the general population. However, if you block a major thoroughfare, you’ve now inconvenienced A LOT of people who are probably not all of a sudden going to become sympathetic to your cause.

          • I like how people romanticize the 60s and other times in history, as if people were easily convinced. As if civilians didn’t beat and heckle those during the Woolworth sit ins. This isn’t a PR campaign, this isn’t for sympathy, this isn’t “Please give us our rights” this is “We demand our rights”, “You will listen”, “You will be slightly inconvenienced in “unjust” ways until our lives are valued”. The way civil disobedience is perceived when people of color do it is “they aren’t doing it right, this isn’t the way” when white people do it they are “noble and just” and history celebrates.

          • Thank you, caphillnative. It’s unfortunate that people are so quick to forget our history.

          • +10000, caphillnative

          • caphillnative FTW. The idea that if protesters were just more polite, then people like Doc would be happy to grant them their rights is both disingenuous and gross.

          • Exactly, caphillnative. Yes, it’s inconvenient, but that’s nothing compared with the inconvenience of having to explain to your children why their friends will be treated differently by police than they will.

          • @caphillnative except when the white fools exercised civil disobedience up in Burns, OR, most all of the country decried it as stupid and not really a thing. Don’t paint with too broad a brush.

        • I think inconveniencing people is rather the point. Much like the problem of police brutality itself, protestors standing on the side of the road are easy for the majority of Americans to ignore. Protestors blocking the street, less so.

          • I think you miss Doc’s point though. In the 1960s, yes, this might have gotten people to pay attention and care and to amplify their message and to have brought about effective change. In the 2010s, I think most people who are inconvenienced will resent the protesters and the inconvenience to themselves and their day and be less sympathetic to their cause. Slacktivism and all.

          • “I think most people who are inconvenienced will resent the protesters and the inconvenience to themselves and their day and be less sympathetic to their cause.”
            .
            Um, white people were equally annoyed by African-Americans protesting back in the 1960s when they disturbed their meals in Woolworth’s, sat in their seats on the bus, or used the White’s Only toilets. And again, we are hearing the same ‘ol refrain of “this isn’t the right time.” When is the right time to assert civil rights? People were telling the same thing to gay Americans in in the 90s and 00s.

          • So the protests in the 60s fixed all civil rights problems so these people are wasting their time? Because it sounds like that’s what you’re saying, gramps.

          • OP Anon, the only whites who would’ve been upset in the 1960s by African-Americans “disturb[ing] their meals in Woolworth’s, [sitting] in their seats on the bus, or [using] the Whites Only toilets” would’ve been those who were opposed the goal of the protesters, i.e., integration. That’s not the case here. Anyone can be affected by a roadblock, whether that person is sympathetic to the Black Lives Matter movement, neutral, opposed, politically apathetic, whatever.

        • Getting to work on time is not nearly as important as not being killed by police.

          The world is far bigger than your own backyard. If you feel “inconvenienced,” imagine what it must be like to be black and pulled over by a police officer.

          • Ok, Kevin, I imagined it. Wait! No; sorry, I meant I lived being a minority in the South Bronx. It ain’t all that bad – I hold a sh*t ton of graduate degrees and never got shot even though my brother was a drug dealer, and my friends were in gangs. Don’t fight cops (and I had plenty of opportunities) and you don’t have a bad experience, like getting shot.

            But instead of protesting first, maybe immerse yourself in the hood minority’s mindset (and area) and then tell me if we ALL make the right decisions with officers who are trying to do their job. I’m stick of minorities who never stepped foot in the hood treating all of us like victims: “it’s totally the officer’s fault – never ours.” Mannn, please.

            Also: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/12/upshot/surprising-new-evidence-shows-bias-in-police-use-of-force-but-not-in-shootings.html?_r=0

  • Interesting, I might walk up there after my meeting and people watch….

  • I Dont Get It

    “Asian Silence Is Violence”?

    • It looks like the sign-holder is of East Asian ethnicity, and some of the other protesters appear to be of East Asian or Southeast Asian ethnicity.

    • I also saw “white silence is violence” and “blue silence is violence” signs, for what it’s worth

    • There is a big movement with Asian American youth to stand in solidarity with black issues and to encourage the older folks to do the same. To recognize that their minority status puts them in similar dangers and disadvantages, and to use their “privileged minority status” as a voice.

      • That’s absurd — Asians experience “dangers and disadvantages” similar to US-born blacks? When things go bad it urban zones, it’s blacks (think Marion Barry or Sharpton) who vilify Asians shopkeepers and and torch their shops!

        And university affirmative action — esp in states like California — benefits blacks at the EXPENSE of Asians.

      • That’s kind of the problem that bothers me about the term “People of Color”–discrimination isn’t cut and dry, white vs. non-white. The discrimination faced by blacks is far worse than that faced by Latinos, let alone faced by East Asians. Far from “recognizing their disadvantages and using their privileged minority status as a voice,” I suspect it’s often “enjoying their privileged status while pretending they’re at a similar disadvantage.”

  • Protesting the mistreatment of people of color at the hands of police, by blocking a bus route that many from east of the river take to get to work. Sigh.

    Protesting the FOP? Right on. Blocking traffic? Can be a powerful statement if used correctly. Deciding while protesting the FOP, “hey, why don’t we block this street, too? FIGHT THE POWER!” is rather naïve. Come on, guys—strategy.

    • I have to agree with Fran. Yes, this approach (impeding traffic) gets attention… but it’s negative attention. It’s likely to alienate anyone who was on the fence, and will only harden the beliefs of people who were anti-BLM in the first place.

      • Brooklyn Brawler

        On the fence about police brutality towards minorities in this country? And on the fence about shooting an innocent defenseless human being. Yeah I can see how one could be on the fence about that. *sarcastic*

        • Look, I’m strongly opposed to police brutality… but how is sarcasm going to get anyone to come over in favor of Black Lives Matter? What’s the goal here — to achieve change, or just to vent?

          • The obvious answer is both. No need to be so defensively dense.

          • Um, no need to call me “dense.” I understand that people _desire_ to achieve change… but as far as I can tell, road-blocking protests are not achieving change and are merely allowing people to vent.
            .
            If this many people who SUPPORT the goals of Black Lives Matter object to road-blocking protests, what do you think the reaction is like among people who are skeptical of BLM?

        • There’s much more too it, of course people aren’t on the fence about an unwarranted act of violence. There are isolated acts of police violence yes but come on now BLM is all over the board. Get into the community and try and affect blacks killing other blacks which is exponentially higher than police related killings

          • dcgator

            Oh man, enough of this “black on black” shit. Everyone kills everyone else…all races. Police are not a race.
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jQ_0bqWKO-k

          • I’m asking because I just don’t know the answer. But why is this “Black on Black” shit not a legitimate point? I tried researching and this seemed to be my best answer: https://infogr.am/Black-34991937313
            I honestly just want to know so I can be intelligently informed.

            Thanks

          • Gotta love a good dog whistle!
            Every race kills themselves more than police do…black on black crime is at most 4% higher than other race on same race crime likely due in part to the fact the black neighborhoods are more homogenous and they move less. What are you doing about all those white people killing each other?
            There are NUMEROUS community groups aimed at stopping violence more generally. Just Google them & stop trying to shift the focus to something that is effectively a non issue as long as you’re not Black.

          • Even if one argues that actual _killings_ are “isolated,” I don’t see how it can be argued that police brutality is “isolated.” Sure, it’s not universal, but there is way too much of it. And police discrimination against minorities is much too widespread.
            .
            I don’t have a problem with Black Lives Matter focusing on the specific issue of police killings of, and brutality against, African-Americans. It continues to happen, even with police KNOWING that the advent of phone cameras means that there may be a record to hold them accountable. How many times in the past must there have been cases like Walter Scott’s, etc., but where there was no recording to corroborate witness statements and no social media by which such recordings could be circulated?

          • Anon Spock, the statistics don’t back up what you are saying about black on black crime being only 4% higher. If you the charts in the link it shows that when population is equal the black on black violent crime highly exceeds all other same race crimes.
            How is this not a problem?

          • justinbc

            FWIW police have killed more than twice the number of white people than black people this year. This is something that not just black people should be upset by, everyone should.

          • Justin – those statistics prove why #blacklivesmatter is needed. White people are about 63% of the population, black people about 12%. And yet only twice as many whites have been killed by police, when there are nearly 5 times as many whites overall.

          • “Looking for help” — I clicked on your infogr.am link, but I don’t see any indication of who actually produced the infographic. Its statistical soundness looks a bit questionable to me — it seems to be going by “percentage of crimes of type X committed by demographic Y,” not looking specifically at intrademographic murder rates.
            .
            Anyway, as I’ve said before, I don’t see any particular reason why Black Lives Matter should have to widen its focus beyond the specific issue of police brutality. Our expectations for police can and should be higher than for the population at large — it’s one thing to kill someone in one’s capacity as a private citizen, but another to do it as a law enforcement officer.

          • justinbc, i know you’re probably playing devil’s advocate here as you usually do, but I’m lost. There are more whites than blacks in the U.S. numbers-wise, so of course there will be more whites killed by police than blacks. But the *rate* of blacks killed by police (relative to their population size) is 2x greater than the rate at which whites are killed. This country experiences lots of confusion about the-actual-number-vs.-the-rate-at-which-things-occur.

          • HaileUnlikely

            There’s a whole lot of sloppy thinking and sloppy math going on in many of the posts above.

          • HaileUnlikely

            FWIW I would argue that the rate that makes sense to talk about, which of course we can’t due to lack of data, is the number of persons killed by police divided by the number of encounters with police [measured somehow]. The rates at which Caucasians and African American’s encounter police are basically unknown due to lack of data, but I’d be willing to bet that they are hugely disparate, due to small differences in crime rates, biases in who the police target for general enforcement actions, as well as phenomena that are not racially-motivated per se but have a disproportionate impact (e.g., the well-documented phenomenon of cities with high poverty rates relying on police shaking down poor people as a source of revenue). Carrying through all of the legitimate differences as well as the biases, you end up with massively higher population-based rates of encounters with police for the African American population than for whites. And some encounters with police end up with police killing citizens. Not that that is ever ok, and not that “it isn’t that they’re disproportionately likely to kill me, it’s just that they’re disproportionally likely to stop me” should be of any comfort to anybody, but if we want to solve the problem, we need to first identify the problem correctly, and I’m afraid that hasn’t happened yet.

          • but once again the percentage of crimes being committed by each race is a huge factor. You can’t just say there is a greater percentage of white people so it should be like 80/20 in terms of each race being killed by police without factoring in the amount of crimes being committed per race factor.

          • Haile, fyi I wasn’t saying that I think BLM should be expanding their base to include black on black crimes. I was just responding to a comment about black on black crime not being relevant or “enough of that shit”. I’m for black lives matter if they are making progress in any way.

          • HaileUnlikely

            Looking for help – My comment above was mainly a statistical one, was directed at every single person above who cited any number for any purpose, and is one that I would have made pretty much regardless of the subject at hand.

          • Looking for help- there are NUMEROUS community groups to stop the violence. Very easy to Google them or go into the community to find out. I don’t see how black on black crime is relevant to the discussion of police brutality. If no black people killed other Black people, is police brutality magically going to disappear?

          • Looking for help – In regards to your statement, “but once again the percentage of crimes being committed by each race is a huge factor.” I might be reading this wrong but it sounds like that you’re assuming crimes must be committed in order for a person to be shot by police? But that doesn’t follow. People are being killed who haven’t committed any crimes, except for just existing.

          • justinbc

            I’m actually not playing devil’s advocate at all, people are just so conditioned to think that anytime stats are used in this discussion it’s to discount the argument being made. The comparative rate at which blacks and whites are killed is certainly pertinent to -a- discussion, but the point I’m making is that police are killing EVERYONE, white or black. This is an important thing to take note of for the BLM movement, because the “counter-movement” of “All Live Matter” should be easily answered by “OK, so what are you doing to make sure that all lives matter? Are you advocating for more police scrutiny, accountability, etc? Because it affects your race too.” You’re not going to convince the average racist to come over to your side, but you can not-so-subtley show him/her that you both want the same end goal, less killing of citizens by police.

      • Yeah, I saw some pretty nasty posts on an acquaintance’s FB page about BLM blocking traffic on 95. He’s someone I would consider somewhat neutral too so I was surprised. BLM held up the Pride parade here in Toronto and the response/support was a mixed bag. They pissed off a lot of people.

        • dcgator

          I think the interesting thing, is, the people who are being inconvenienced, and thusly, pissed off, are those who are in the target audience. POC know of the daily injustices black folks and others face. Those are inconvenienced likely do not think about these things often. Disruption is necessary. If you’re more upset about being 30 minutes to late than the fact multiple police have been acquitted for clear violations against black lives…you’re part of the problem.

          • +1

          • Some people are more upset about being 30 minutes late, but those people are not going to all the sudden understand because traffic was blocked. It takes communication, talking, understanding, and so much more. The comments on the FB post I saw were disgusting…not the type of people who are going to have their hearts and minds changed easily. I don’t know, BLM is starting to feel like the Occupy movement to me. They have brought a lot of really important issues to light, but it takes a lot more than blocking traffic.

          • HaileUnlikely

            The people inconvenienced surely includes but is by no means limited to their target audience. Blocking a major road in a very diverse area is a rather non-specific way to reach one’s audience. The road was blocked for whites, blacks, Hispanics, rich/poor, fully engaged, sympathetic, apathetic, hard-of-heart all the same. And note that, ironically, those who the protesters do not seek to target but just get caught up in the middle because, well, it’s a road and everybody uses roads, are probably disproportionately likely to suffer worse consequences from being 30 minutes late to wherever they were going.

          • HaileUnlikely

            To clarify, though, I have no ill will toward the protesters, am generally sympathetic to BLM, and believe that there are definitely times when blocking a major road is warranted. But to say (or worse, actually think) that those affected by the action are exclusively those in need of a wake-up call is delusional.

          • You’ll have to connect the dots for me on how blocking commuters from getting to work serves to hold killer cops accountable. Do you actually believe that these commuters are changing their minds about police brutality as a consequence of being stuck in traffic? I’d also like to add that the day the cheap rhetorical device “If blah blah, then you’re part of the problem” is officially retired will be a happy day indeed.

          • Agreed with Formerly ParkViewRes, HaileUnlikely, and Zora.

          • justinbc

            “I don’t know, BLM is starting to feel like the Occupy movement to me.”
            This is what happens when you have no central leadership, and therefore no accountability, and ultimately no political power to affect change.

    • Agree, this is not well planned. It might be more effective if they chained themselves to the doors of the FOP and/or the Hall of States nearby, since municipal governments have primary responsibility for policing their law enforcement behavior.

  • There should be a special place in hell for people who block traffic on purpose. I hope they all get arrested.

    • Must be nice being a white man in America.

    • Agree (minus the consigment to Hell part). I’m African American and of course support the overall aims of the BLM, but this traffic blocking tactic is not helping. Frankly, I’m getting a little tired of seeing non-black folk taking part in these sort of agressive actions. Bottom line: stuff like engeders resentment towards African Americans and their concerns among people that might otherwise be persuaded to support the cause. If that is going to be the outcome, might as well have at least a plurality of Africans Americans involved in the provocation.

      I appreciate non-black “allies” but they should be especiailly keen to enage in construtive and effective methods of advocacy. Yes, make people uncomfortable and challenge them to face their privilege, but don’t hold up a parent trying to get their child to daycare or even someone just trying to get to work on time in the morning (which, by the way, includes many black folks). Hell, stand on the side of the street, in the median even if you want to be daring but (relativey) non-onbstructive. But please let traffic flow.

  • The disgusting demonization of police continues!

    • Somehow the narrative has been shifted to the demonization of police when all that was ever asked is that officers that commit crimes are held accountable. No one is demonizing police but rather the system that allows them to kill with impunity.

      • It’s easier for people to put out the idea that this is just demonizing the police than to confront the fact that people around them may be turning a blind eye to crimes by fellow officers.
        The whole blue lives matter movement being a prime example. You can stop being a cop at any time. We can’t stop being Black.

  • Just passed this at 9:30 on my bike, i was half tempted to play red rover and see if i could break through. I went around the block. Looked to be about 10 – 15 people left protesting.

    • You think ramming into a line of people with your bike is all in good fun? Wow.

      • You think that jch is serious? Wow.

        • Countless posts on social media of people threatening to run over anyone blocking a road, so why shouldn’t we gather jch is serious?

          • Super serious PoP commentariat. I was simply making an observation as to how many people were there. It was easy to reroute my commute. Do you always take statements made in social media so serious.?

          • On a bike playing red rover is hardly a threat needing to escalate and be taken so seriously. Man, you need to relax!

  • Yes, standing there and blocking people from being able to get to work (people who have nothing to do with the group(s) you are protesting about) is an AWESOME way to get everyone to say “oh, wow, those people are TOTALLY RIGHT about the issue they are protesting about!! And my boss will completely understand that I got stuck in a traffic jam that these idiots deliberately created and missed that really important meeting this morning, because they’re so right about whatever they wrote on that sign!”
    .
    Blocking me from getting to work on time automatically puts me on the side of whatever and whomever you are protesting AGAINST and makes me think your cause is stupid and frivolous. If you have something to say, do it on the sidewalk in front of whatever place you want to say something about. Stay out of the road. If you can’t be bothered to care about the people you are inconveniencing who may very well get fired over being late (which, in this case, is ironically most likely to be minimum wage workers, who in DC are overwhelmingly black), I can’t be bothered to take you seriously.

    • HaileUnlikely

      The parenthetical in your last sentence is a massively important point. My job is flexible enough that if I am 30 minutes late it quite honestly does not affect me at all. Back when Occupy was in town, though, and I was delayed getting out of downtown, that caused a room full of immigrants sitting at my church waiting for their unpaid volunteer teacher (me) to arrive to teach their class. Yes, blocking a road will impact and inconvenience the people who you explicitly seek to impact and inconvenience. But it will also impact and inconvenience everybody else in a lot of non-obvious ways as well.

    • “(people who have nothing to do with the group(s) you are protesting about)”
      Assuming these people you referred to are all US citizens then they have EVERYTHING to do with what’s being protested. BLM is asking all Americans to take a stand on the issue and demand that people be treated equally and respectfully by law enforcement regardless of their race. This requires that all members of society acknowledge, demand and ensure that all citizens are treated fairly. If there’s some arbitrary line being crossed that suddenly tells you “hey nope, i’m fed up, y’all police just go on beating and killing black people disproportionately, I’m all for it”, then you sir or madam need to take a look at your moral compass.

      • HaileUnlikely

        Honest question, for which I’ll stipulate that there exists no such thing as a correct answer. Is delaying a Legal Aid attorney who is on his way to court to defend his black client from unjust charges being brought against him by the police an acceptable consequence of closing the road? Is delaying a teacher who is on his way to a teach math to his class of black 7th graders an acceptable consequence of closing the road? I’m genuinely interested in hearing your opinion on this.
        .
        Again, I have a very flexible schedule – making me late for work doesn’t hurt me or really bother me much at all. I just want to make sure that you think about the different ways that other people might be impacted.

      • False binary. (Somewhat like GWB’s “You’re either with us, or with the terrorists.”)
        .
        As Dognonymous said below: “It’s very easy to hold both of these perspectives [being upset about police brutality and being upset about protesters blocking roads] without them conflicting. I am continually outraged by police overreach and completely unwarranted police violence against POC in America. I also am upset and annoyed when people block roads and screw up my day. The latter does not inform the former. That said, it also doesn’t strike me as an effective method of civil disobedience and messaging in 2016.”

  • Ashy Oldlady

    What does the Bureau of Land Management have to do with any of this???

  • Gotta love the comments from white people telling black people the “correct” way to protest.

    If you’re enraged/upset/annoyed/angry about a delay in your commute, consider that you live and participate in a society where black people are far more likely to be targeted and killed by the State than white people (as a percentage of population). Consider what it’s like to be shot and killed simply for driving a car. Consider what it’s like to be shot and killed simply for playing with a toy.

    This is a real problem in America. People being late to work is an inconvenience, nothing more.

    • HaileUnlikely

      Recall that when Chris Christie shut down a road in NJ, a person in an ambulance stuck in the mess died. If the road had been closed for what some sane person might actually accept as a good reason (e.g., this protest) instead of an obese governor throwing a juvenile tantrum, the ambulance would have been just as stuck and the patient would have been just as dead. If you think the only impact of closing a road is inconveniencing white-collar office workers, you are very mistaken. I am not trying to persuade you that this is not a valid form of protest, but if you make this all about making people late for work, you are at best willfully ignorant, and giving your brain the benefit of the doubt, I think it is more likely that you are straight up lying.

      • dcgator

        Haile, for someone who is using a lot of logic to poke holes and let us know what we’re doing wrong in our arguments (which, I’d agree, for the most part, are fallible–including mine), interesting that you decided to throw in a totally unneeded ad hominem attack about Christie’s weight.

      • Are you comparing a state-mandated road closure with a protest?

        You’re aware, of course, that the police are there, and if there were a situation where an ambulance or other emergency services vehicle would need to get through, the police would make a hole? And that’s assuming (with absolutely no evidence) that the protesters themselves wouldn’t move for an emergency vehicle.

        Lots of false assumptions, false equivalence and false conclusions here, Haile. Never mind, as dcgator said, the unnecessary attack on Christie.

        • HaileUnlikely

          It was more a general point than a comment about this specific protest. Some protests cause much much larger closures of roads, such that an emergency vehicle might be several blocks back. Moreover, it was just an example of an unintended consequence that it didn’t appear you were considering. This may also delay a lawyer who is on his way to defend his black client from unjust charges by the police. Is that merely an inconvenience. Is delaying a DCPS teacher who is on his way to teach a room full of black kids who want to learn math merely an inconvenience? Is delaying a man who just landed a minimum wage job at WalMart after getting out of jail and might not be treated as leniently by his employer as I would be merely an inconvenience?
          .
          If you want to confine the discussion to this specific protest, by the way, nobody is “telling black people how to protest” here – the protesters under discussion at this specific were a bunch of white people and Asian people.

    • HaileUnlikely

      p.s. I generally support BLM, but I don’t support sloppy thinking regardless of who is doing it, and “this will make people late for work and that’s just an inconvenience and that’s all there is to it” is sloppy thinking.

    • It’s very easy to hold both of these perspectives without them conflicting. I am continually outraged by police overreach and completely unwarranted police violence against POC in America. I also am upset and annoyed when people block roads and screw up my day. The latter does not inform the former. That said, it also doesn’t strike me as an effective method of civil disobedience and messaging in 2016.

    • It’s interesting that you think “people being late to work is an inconvenience, nothing more.” That is a privilege in itself. I know many people who do not live in such a privileged world and there are real repercussions for them being late to work. Haile also made some great points–this can result in way worse things than people being late to work.

    • I’m trying to imagine how much more satisfied I might feel about my place in the world and life in general if I were able to wake up every morning feeling as morally superior and self-righteous as Kevin appears to.

    • justinbc

      Unless you’ve met the posters here in person (none of which I’ve seen “tell black people how to protest”), how are you making assumptions about what race they are?

    • THIS is what I hate about this movement. It’s “White vs Black”, or ‘Everyone vs Black”. Instead of Those who want equal rights for black americans VS those bigots who don’t see the need for change”

      -A latino

      • Except that its not this “White vs Black”, or ‘Everyone vs Black”. That is the spin that is being sold to essentially do nothing about the shooting(s) themselves. Its a deflective tactic as is when Obama goes on TV to talk about better communication between officers and the community and other useless rhetoric when the action is try and prosecute officers just like anyone else when a crime has been committed.

        There is no BLM or marches or blocking of streets if officers were indicted when committing a crime.

        • While I agree that the movement started as a way to seek justice for those who were unjustifiably murdered by police, I think it is a little naive to believe that this has not hurt race relations in the US.

          • Oh please! This has EXPOSED race relations in the US. If you would like to point to some year in US history where race relations were better than they were right now, go ahead and try. But you would have to grossly uninformed and completely dismissive of the black experience. What year would you like us to hearken back to exactly? 1789? 1865? 1911? 1936? 1958? 1963? 1976? 1985? 1991? 2007? The only people who have the privilege of looking back at any past year as part of the glory days of sons racial utopia are white folks and their kind. We’ve been dealing with this crap for a loooooong time, and by God, I pray that this is the generation that finally stands up and says loudly and clearly — WE’RE NOT TAKING IT ANYMORE! And if that makes your morning commute a little less pleasant and your nighttime slumber a little less restful, we don’t care. You will have to be the first generation of white Anericans to live with us as equals or you will simply have to get used to agitation, inconvenience, protestation, etc. until things change! Your comfort is not more important than my God-given and civil right to be free, just as free as you. And if you think there was a previous period in the history of this country where folks more readily believed that, you are delusional!!!

  • I’m fine if the MPD gives these folks 15 minutes to block traffic, get their picture taken, etc etc. Then they need to issue a lawful order to move to the sidewalk, and then start making arrests for all those who refuse.

  • …is there just one black person at this protest?

    • These days anyone can go protest anything they want and stick a black lives matter sign up and all of a sudden it becomes a sanctioned BLM protest.

      • When are social movements ever “sanctioned” by some governing body? It’s a BLM protest because that’s the cause these people came out to fight for. Not because someone stuck up a sign at, like, a completely unrelated Planned Parenthood rally.
        .
        Regardless, I was just commenting on how it’s a little silly to have a BLM protest without any BLs present.

    • justinbc

      There were several black people there. Certainly not a majority from what I could see, but a fair amount.

    • If you would like to find out about, hear from, and see about the local Black organizers who are leading the protest, you are welcome to browse the hashtags #stopFOP and #occupyFOP on Facebook and Twitter, or you can just keep making up stuff based on a quick glance at two pictures. 🙂

  • So, I support the movement and am a fan of peaceful protests but man this would have angered me if it had made me late for something…

  • According to the website, BlackLivesMatter.com, the movement’s list of demands for “Black men, women, trans and gender-nonconforming people,” includes:

    We demand an end to all forms of discrimination and the full recognition of our human rights.
    We demand an immediate end to police brutality and the murder of Black people and all oppressed people.
    We demand full, living wage employment for our people.
    We demand decent housing fit for the shelter of human beings and an end to gentrification.
    We demand an end to the school to prison pipeline & quality education for all.
    We demand freedom from mass incarceration and an end to the prison industrial complex.
    We demand a racial justice agenda from the White House that is inclusive of our shared fate as Black men, women, trans and gender-nonconforming people. Not My Brother’s Keeper, but Our Children’s Keeper.
    We demand access to affordable healthy food for our neighborhoods.
    We demand an aggressive attack against all laws, policies, and entities that disenfranchise any community from expressing themselves at the ballot.
    We demand a public education system that teaches the rich history of Black people and celebrates the contributions we have made to this country and the world.
    We demand the release of all U.S. political prisoners.
    We demand an end to the military industrial complex that incentivizes private corporations to profit off of the death and destruction of Black and Brown communities across the globe.

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