'Whose streets, our streets' chant St. Louis cops when arresting protesters

More violence erupted in St. Louis during the third day of protests over the acquittal of a former officer who shot a drug dealer.

The massive police presence failed to deter the violence, but last night, cops decided to let the protesters know who was in charge.

Police just chanted "Whose Streets, our streets" on Tucker Blvd after making arrests

— David Carson (@PDPJ) September 18, 2017

I spoke with the commander at the scene, he said he did not hear the chant, but said chant was not acceptable, said he would deal with it.

— David Carson (@PDPJ) September 18, 2017

Protesters who use that same chant are delusional.  The streets belong to everyone, and the cops are there to make sure of that.

Buried between the lines of this AP story is an interesting fact: there were about as many "peaceful" protesters as there were rioters.

I wonder how many belonged to both groups?

The recent St. Louis protests follow a pattern seen since the August 2014 killing of Michael Brown in nearby Ferguson: The majority of demonstrators, though angry, are law-abiding. But as the night wears on, a subsection emerges, a different crowd more willing to confront police, sometimes to the point of clashes.

Protest organizer Anthony Bell said he understands why some act out: While change can come through peaceful protests, such as those led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., years of oppression has caused some to turn violent.

"I do not say the (violent) demonstrators are wrong, but I believe peaceful demonstrations are the best," Bell said.

State Rep. Bruce Franks, a Democrat who has participated in the peaceful protests, said those behind the violence "are not protesters."

I'm willing to bet that some are.  They march with the "peaceful" group during the day and then return at night under cover of darkness to carry out the vandalism and attacks on police.  They are not a "subsection" in that they are not all different people. 

The mindset of the protest organizer, Mr. Bell, is extremely revealing.  He believes that both peaceful protests and violent activism are necessary to fight "oppression."  Nothing would please him more than the cops reacting to violent protesters by sending a few to the hospital.  So far, the police have shown admirable restraint and acted professionally.

Sending a message to the rioters that the police control the streets is perfectly acceptable, in my opinion, since so much of what happens in these confrontations is psychological.  Letting protesters know whose streets they are busting up might even save the lives of both police and rioters.

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