As people continue to protests against police killings and brutality across cities in the U.S., law enforcement officers have geared up to go to war with citizens they had sworn to protect. Videos on social media have revealed heavy police brutality on protesters.
You wouldn’t be wrong if you say it was a weekend of violence between American authorities and the citizens of the nation, over the reason for several days of protests, which was prompted by the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis and other killings of black people.
The protest has seen Major cities burned as the protesters continue to lash out at police and the government of the day. However, the authoritarian reaction to those demonstrations has been severe brutality against the protesters.
A freelancer in Minneapolis, Linda Tirado, says she’s “permanently blind” in her left eye after being hit by a rubber bullet or tracer round fired by security agencies on Friday. “I’d identified myself as a member of the press but was shot with a projectile anyway,” said Linda Tirado.
Social media have been littered with videos from the riots scenes across the country showing police firing so-called “less-lethal” rounds at protesters, pushing them to the ground, beating them with battens, and using other forceful ways of abusing their right to peaceful protest.
A touching scenario was that of Louisville, Kentucky, where people took to the streets in memory of Breonna Taylor, the 26-year-old former EMT who was shot and killed by officers serving a warrant at her home. A video of officers apparently confiscating and destroying water stores held by protesters was posted by reporters.
— Natalie Neysa Alund (@nataliealund) May 30, 2020
The previous night, Louisville police shot what was believed to be pepper balls directly at Kaitlin Rust, a journalist at WAVE 3, and her crew. The news company recorded the attack on camera.
Also in New York City Saturday, an NYPD cruiser was seen on an emerging video careening into a crowd of protesters. Although it wasn’t reported immediately how many were injured, we saw protesters screaming in pains. Mayor Bill de Blasio reportedly described the incident as “troubling” in an interview with NY1.
“NYPD officers just drove an SUV into a crowd of human beings. They could’ve killed them, & we don’t know how many they injured,” Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) tweeted Saturday night. “NO ONE gets to slam an SUV through a crowd of human beings.”
The most brutality has been on members of the press as officers in various cities target journalists on Saturday. SurgeZirc has learned that HuffPost senior reporter Chris Mathias was detained in the middle of the protests in Brooklyn, New York, even after identifying himself as a member of the press and wearing a press card around his neck.
Police in Minneapolis, was seen on camera shooting tear gas at reporters “at point-blank range,” and a Vice News reporter says he was thrown to the ground, held down and pepper-sprayed by police after identifying himself as a member of the press.
Police had weapons trained on a group of us. We held up our press passes. One kept his rifle on us while the others continued to fire foam baton rounds. pic.twitter.com/duZu5zzzZI
— Michael Anthony Adams (@MichaelAdams317) May 31, 2020
Also in the early hours of Sunday morning, a reporter in Minneapolis said authorities shot out his car window with “live rounds,” and posted pictures of himself bleeding from his face and arm. The fight is gradually shifting from controlling protesters to stick to peaceful protest to attacking journalists.