Laurent Clark: White-washing the facts |

Laurent Clark: White-washing the facts

On Sept. 12, Liz Kellar’s story, “It went so horribly wrong,” gave an overview of the recent attack upon the BLM demonstration by a group waving Thin Blue Line flags.

The article quotes a spokeswoman for a group called Patriots Pushing Back who were connected to the incident. The woman stated it was, “Not a violent retaliation against BLM” as her group was, “attempting to protect our small town against any potential violence.”

If so, her group was in fact, a mob of vigilantes, “A self-appointed group who undertake law enforcement in a community, without legal authority.”

The situation was further exacerbated in that there was no violence occurring when her group attacked the marchers. She gives a weak claim of provocation saying one of the marchers “spit on members of her group.” If so, her group must have been in their faces for that to happen. But there seems to be no evidence that it did happen.

The woman presented a nebulous list of things that occurred in other places adding that “they” could be coming to our town as further excuse for her group’s mob violence. There always has to be a “they” which usually means anyone who doesn’t agree with one’s politics; thus, may be branded as, unpatriotic, not like “us.”

She re-enforced her excuses by conjuring up a rumor of dreaded militants representing Antifa, as if they were at the city gate. They were not.

She refers to her cohort in her cause and his hate speech on Facebook but defends his right to free speech.

She does not extend that right to signs bearing messages with which she did not agree, being carried by BLM folks.

But the real unsavory conduct by her group is a them vs. us posture it assumes.

This is emphasized by hypocritically naming themselves as “Patriots” to the obvious exclusion of anyone with whom they do not agree. It is an insult to the population at large, who do not go about wrapping themselves in the flag, as she does while inferring her folks are somehow better patriots than the rest of society.

Her list of good deeds in support of genuine law enforcement is fine, but it does not white-wash the fact that she heartened the unprovoked attacks on BLM.

The overall tenor of the article is that she does not regret the violence, only regretting that her group got caught, and on camera at that. Her endeavor is neither patriotic nor does it help to prevent the kind of violence she talks around.

Laurent Clark lives in Penn Valley.

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