Times are tense. There have been riots and assaults and people being killed, all in response to someone else allegedly being killed, which seems kind of stupid in the grand scheme of things, especially since no one killed had anything to do with the alleged murder. As a result, people on the flip side of the issue are feeling pretty tense themselves because, well, if people are dying, what are the odds that one of them might be next?
However, while the concerns are understandable, the actions of some of these folks often aren’t.
Two people face charges for allegedly brandishing guns in separate incidents during “Black Lives Matter” demonstrations in Medford earlier this month, the Jackson County District Attorney’s Office said on Thursday.
51-year-old David Westmoreland was arrested on June 1 after he reportedly drew a handgun and pointed it at protesters in downtown Medford. On Thursday, a grand jury indicted Westmoreland on two counts of Unlawful Use of a Weapon and one count of Menacing.
According to the DA’s office, the incident involving Marcella Welch happened during a separate demonstration on June 6. She faces one count of Unlawful Use of a Weapon and one count of Menacing following the grand jury proceedings.
Neither of these two appears to be connected except for allegedly committing the same offense.
However, neither of these two are particularly unique. There have been others who have allegedly opted to commit similar offenses, and it’s got to stop, folks.
Look, I get being concerned. Supposedly peaceful protests turned into riots often enough that I get being worried. Many of us kept our firearms handy during the height of the stupidity, so I get that.
But you don’t draw your gun on protestors. Not without a clear threat to you or another or however your state words its use of force laws. Yes, use of force laws, because pointing a gun at another person is considered a use of force. No, having the gun visible isn’t, but that’s not what Westmoreland and Welch are accused of doing. They’re accused of actually pointing it at someone else.
In the process, they’re hurting their own cause.
Seriously, how many of those protestors are going to look at these two jackwagons and think the other side is reasonable, that they’ll listen to reasonable discourse? Oh, some might, but a lot are also going to remember protesting and having a couple of white people putting a gun in their face.
Nicely done. That should defuse the situation beautifully. </sarcasm>
Look, I’m not saying not to defend yourself, but use common sense. For one thing, unless you have a reason to be at such a protest, don’t be there. If you’re worried about your place of business, that’s one thing, but if you’re just going to drive by? Dude, bypass that stuff. You don’t need the headache anyway. Plus, if it’s going to go violent, at least you’ll be blocks away.
If you have to, make damn sure you have to. Follow your local laws and make damn sure you can defend it in a court of law. In the current climate, you just might have to.