by Susan Duclos, All News Pipeline:
A day before the events that spiraled out of control in Virginia, resulting in one death and dozens of injuries, the Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe issued a statement warning people to "stay away" from Charlottesville, stating in part "In advance of [Saturday's] rally there have been communications from extremist groups, many of which are located outside of Virginia, who may seek to commit acts of violence against rally participants or law enforcement officials."
EVERYTHING WAS PLANNED IN ADVANCE
The fact that the Governor issued that statement before the planned White Supremacist "Unite The Right" rally even began, tell us a number of things, such as the even was planned, permits were obtained and the state authorities were aware that outside groups were coming in for the specific purpose, in the governor's words, to "commit acts of violence against the rally participants."
Which is exactly what happened.
It is also important to highlight, and hammer the point home, that the media consistently attempted to conflate different groups, misleading their audience by labeling the protesters as "alt-right" and "white nationalists," rather than accurately pointing out they were "white supremacist," which is a very important distinction.
Nationalist, via Merriam Webster: 1) an advocate of or believer in nationalism 2) a member of a political party or group advocating national independence or strong national government.
Supremacist, via Merriam Webster: 1) an advocate or adherent of group supremacy.
Whether one agrees or vehemently disagrees with the "message" espoused at the planned and approved white supremacist rally, the reason they were given the permits is because whether we like their message or hate it, it is their First Amendment right to be able to hold their rally... free speech.
The point here is the rally was planned. The governor supposedly planned for potential violence as his statement before the event also said "In the event that such violent or unlawful conduct occurs, I have instructed state public safety officials to act quickly and decisively in order to keep the public and themselves safe," and the "outside groups" planned to commit violence against the rally participants.
Everything was planned.
WAS LAW ENFORCEMENT TOLD TO STAND DOWN?
If law enforcement was ready, aware of all these plans, as was the governor of Virginia, how did things spiral out of control to the point where one person was killed, and 19 were injured when a car plowed through counter-protesters?
According to Seattle.PI, police are being criticized for the slow response to the violence that started even before the rally began, for failing to keep the rally participants and counter protesters apart:
Anger over the how police responded came from all directions and intensified after the deaths of a woman struck by a car that plowed into a group of counter protesters. Experts said police appeared outnumbered, ill-prepared and inexperienced.
"The worst part is that people got hurt and the police stood by and didn't do a godd---- thing," said David Copper, 70, of Staunton, Va., after an initial morning melee at a park that when unchecked by police for several minutes.
Fourteen people were injured in clashes; nine others were hurt in the car crash. Later, two Virginia State Police troopers were killed when their helicopter smashed into trees at the edge of town and burst into flames. The loss of police officers only compounded the calamity on a day that pushed police, city officials and residents to their limits.
Cable news replayed a seemingly endless loop of the early violence at Emancipation Park, where police in riot gear had surrounded the expanse on three sides, though seemed to watch as groups beat each other with sticks and bludgeoned one another with shields. Many on both sides came dressed for battle, with helmets and chemical irritants.
Police appeared at one point to retreat and then watch the beatings before eventually moving in to end the free-for-all, make arrests and tend the injured.
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