A Black Lives Matter rally gathered at Athens City Hall to discuss the movement and the local government’s budget. However, the rally was met with opposition leading to tension and unrest on June 16, 2020, in Athens, Georgia. Disputes broke out between the two groups leading to several verbal alterations and one physical altercation.  

(7) comments

GrannyTenderstone

It's a completely misleading terminology to use a label like Pro police, because nobody at the event was anti-police. We are anti-FASCIST police. We are in favor of REDIRECTING police funding to make it more efficient, legitimate, and effective.

Mislabeling things is very detrimental and destructive, and labeling this movement "defund the police" was a big mistake, because most people won't bother to find out what that actually means. And if you think it's an accident that such labels get pasted onto things, you probably don't understand the nature of infiltrators and agent provocateurs.

I can't believe that righteous people with the right ideas fell for that label. And I warned them early on not to use it, but you can bet it was people trying to divide and stir up trouble who infiltrated the righteous effort in an effort to cause more division. People darn well better choose their terminologies more precisely and correctly if they ever expect anything to advance.

Grace101

I would also like to add to this discussion because there are definitely inconsistencies on what actually happened. As someone who was there from the very beginning to the very end, I can say that the pro-police group did, in fact, escalate the situation into what it had become. The initial protest was barely a protest, but rather - an informational meeting about the budget of ACC. After the arrival of the pro-police protesters, the BLM protester reiterated their points on BUDGET so that the pro-police protesters could listen in. Instead, they continued to rudely talk among themselves and the man holding the flag went as far as to inch closer and closer to the BLM protesters, hitting me in the face several times with his flag (WITHOUT a mask I might add). The BLM protesters migrated to where the pro-police protesters were and danced until a pro-police protester physically grabbed onto the legs of a BLM protester when their glasses went flying off of their face. This was NOT an accident. As someone who was in the midst of it all, I can confirm that I did hear "white lives matter" and "all lives matter" on multiple occasions. The pro-police protesters were indeed told to move to the side door even though they didn't even know that a town hall meeting was taking place that night. The BLM protesters were not told a single thing. Some of these comments are just some of the many reasons that this country is in the turmoil that it's in today. This isn't an opinion, this is a factual account of what actually happened from someone who was there for hours and had their eyes and ears open the entire time.

drfarris7

I was part of the pro police group. I never heard anyone use the N word and the response to the Black Lives Matter chant was All Lives Matter. The above response is another example of distorting the truth to support a predetermined agenda. What I can say is that the defund police group for the most part was obnoxious and acted like spoiled children trying to drown out any opinion that doesn't line up with theirs.

agcorley

I would like to clarify two points about the protests, namely, the physical altercation and the order in which speakers were allowed into the chamber. I will try to do so without bias to either side.

The physical altercation, if you can call it that, was early in the event. I arrived a few minutes late, before either party was at full strength. The BLM group had a speaker set up and was giving various orations while the pro-police group was waiting for their speakers to arrive. The former group spoke and held their signs while the latter chatted in small groups, handed out American flags, and listened to the BLM speaker a bit. Neither group was terribly energetic at the time.

A few minutes after I arrived the pro-police group gathered before the steps of city hall so that they could begin speaking, though their guests had not yet arrived and they had no amplification. This was short-lived, however, as they were interrupted by the BLM group after less than a full minute. I must here make the point that the pro-police group had in no way interfered with the BLM speakers or protesters.

The BLM group rushed to the steps above the pro-police group and stood close in front of them, as well as close at the sides. They began shouting, cursing, chanting, dancing, waving their signs over the speaker’s head, and perhaps most importantly, playing “F the police” as loud as they could from their speaker. There was little the pro-police group could do, since, as stated, they had no amplification system. For the most part they tried to ignore the BLM group.

I was standing among the pro-police group, and even if I was looking at the incident when it happened, I would not have had a good view. From what I understand one of the pro-police ralliers tried to take the speaker, and in so doing knocked a BLM protester down. I did not see if she was standing on the railing when she fell, but she was lying at the top of the stairs. Next came several minutes of shouting and arguing. This, however, died down when the pro-police group was able to get a megaphone and begin speaking, though the BLM group once more began blasting their music over the other party.

The matter of how citizens were lined up to speak to the commissioners is comparatively simple. The line was originally supposed to start at the front door. However, as you have seen from the pictures, the BLM group was standing on those stairs, blocking sight of the front door and doubtless leading many to wonder where the line was supposed to be.

I was told at ~5:45 that, since the BLM group was blocking the stairs, the line was moving to the side door. This was passed up the line by word of mouth, and everyone walked to the side door. From what I could see the line was mostly composed of those supporting the police at the front, and it stayed that way for some time. The BLM group continued protesting for some time longer before a large number of them also joined the line, so that the first half was mostly pro-police, the second half mostly anti-police. I have no idea why BLM didn’t join the line when it moved. They saw it moving, but perhaps they did not hear the news of it moving. As stated, BLM used a loud speaker and shouted almost constantly. I think that they simply did not hear that the line was moving.

mweir16

First of all, I would like to say that the person who was attacked is a man, not woman. Do not misgender him. Second of all, there is a video of the entire incident. A pro-police protester grabbed the BLM protester's legs out from under him and tried to do the same to another protestor as well. Again, this was captured on video and had multiple eye witnesses. You can see in the video where he clearly is grabbing at their feet. It was not an accident. You also conveniently left out that members of the pro-police group called members of the BLM group the N-word. When members of the BLM group chanted that "Black Lives Matter" members of the pro-police group chanted "no they don't." Additionally, almost nobody in the pro-police group was wearing a mask, even after multiple members of the BLM protests asked them to put masks on and even gave them masks.

agcorley

Where can I find that video?

Grace101

There are many inconsistencies on what you've reported. You can refer to my post above to refresh your memory of what actually transpired. One of the biggest fallacies of your post is, "they began shouting, cursing, chanting, dancing, waving their signs over the speaker’s head..." At what point did this occur? As mentioned in my post, I was in the center of this chaos and the only thing that occurred after the BLM protesters moved over to the pro-police protesters was dancing and playing music. I know that you must be blind to the truth but don't be as blind as to report false information that you clearly could not even see from your standpoint.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.