Originally, I was hoping to use today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co. to talk about this video shot on Tuesday night in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
BLM protesters in Milwaukee, Wisc. surround a man’s house. He has a Trump & US flag on the outside. He appears to ready a gun from inside the home. He was reportedly arrested for brandishing the weapon. https://t.co/tMKFUGVCa5
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) September 16, 2020
The video shows a crowd of people gathered outside of a home with a Trump sign and a Thin Blue Line flag hanging by the front door. The mob is yelling and chanting at the man inside (apparently named Pete) and you can see him holding what appears to be a shotgun. Eventually police arrive, but the man himself is taken into custody, while the crowd outside cheers and taunts the man.
It would appear that this is the latest collision between the First and Second Amendments, but as much as I’d love to delve into the nitty gritty details, I haven’t been able to find any actual news stories that provide any details or context to what happened. As far as Milwaukee news outlets are concerned, this never happened. Even the Milwaukee Police department has been silent on their social media as far as announcing any arrest or information about why the homeowner was taken away in handcuffs.
I’m still working to gather information about what actually happened and what, if any, charges the homeowner is facing here, but in the meantime today’s show focuses on a few other cases involving protesters and guns, starting with a California man who’s now been accused of assault with a deadly weapon for pointing a gun at a pro-Trump parade of cars near his apartment in Los Angeles County.
Andre Allen Young was identified as the suspect who pointed at a person participating in the Aug. 31 pro-Trump parade, which had stopped in front of the Avalon Woodland Hills apartments, 20544 Ventura Blvd., according to Los Angeles police.
The day before, shots had reportedly been fired at a pro-Trump parade, but the shooter was not found. Police say the next day, a Monday, several vehicles taking part in a parade stopped in front of the apartment complex. Several people in the apartment complex began to shout and throw glass bottles at the caravan, and one of them pointed a rifle at one of the people who had been arguing with them.
No suspects were found at the time of the incident, police said, but a rifle was recovered during the search of one of the apartments.
Superficially, this case bears some resemblance to the case of Mark and Patricia McCloskey in St. Louis. Both involve residents walking out of their doors and displaying firearms at nearby protesters. In the case of the McCloskeys, however, the protesters were marching down a private street and were trespassing. The pro-Trump parade, on the other hand, was on a public street.
There also doesn’t appear to have been any threats by the pro-Trump parade participants, while the McCloskeys allege that many in the crowd were threatening them, and one man held up a couple of ammunition magazines and clacked them together, as if indicating that the bullets inside were meant for the couple.
In other words, I think the McCloskeys have a much stronger case for self-defense than Andre Allen Young does.
We also talk about the recent case from Gainesville, Florida, where a 64-year old man had aggravated assault charges dropped by prosecutors after he was arrested for pointing a gun at protesters who’d surrounded his car. The state’s attorney says that after further investigation, the man’s vehicle had been the target of protesters, who ultimately broke the car’s windshield. The driver displayed his legally-owned firearm, but not as some act of aggression. Instead, according to the prosecutor, he was trying to get the protesters to back away so that he could leave the area.
From the Kyle Rittenhouse case in Kenosha, Wisconsin to the case of Daniel Perry in Austin, Texas, there are no shortage of stories where firearms have played a role; both for the protesters and agitators as well as counter-protesters or individuals who simply find themselves caught up in the middle of a mob.
During today’s VIP Gold live chat with Ed Morrissey, we were asked if leftist prosecutors are going after people who acted in self-defense for political purposes. In my opinion, it is happening, but you have to look at each of these cases individually. I firmly believe that St. Louis prosecutor Kim Gardner used the couple as political cannon fodder, and in fact some newly leaked emails from the prosecutor’s office certainly seem like there was a rush to judgement and what the McCloskey’s attorney calls a “sense of urgency” to charge the couple before the Democratic primary in the city of St. Louis.
In cases (like the case of Kyle Rittenhouse), I think it’s more likely that prosecutors are trying to send a message of “don’t show up here armed,” rather than promote a particular politician or the Democratic agenda. Given the fact that most of the prosecutors are elected officials, however, there’s always at least a chance that prosecutors will play politics with these types of cases, and in some jurisdictions it may be an outright certainty.