In a horrific act of intimidation on the evening of August 24, 2020, Black Lives Matter (BLM) activists entered a Washington, D.C., restaurant and demanded that all of the white patrons raise their fists in solidarity with BLM.1 Everyone complied except one woman sitting by herself. The thugs then swarmed around her. As the hooligans screamed within inches of her face, the courageous woman remained resolute in not raising her fist.
Such acts of aggression by BLM supporters are becoming more frequent. Nonetheless, BLM continues to garner public support. According to a Pew Research Center poll:
The Black Lives Matter movement, which is back in the headlines amid the nationwide protests, receives wide support. Two-thirds of U.S. adults say they support the movement, with 38% saying they strongly support it. This sentiment is particularly strong among black Americans [86 percent], although majorities of white (60%), Hispanic (77%) and Asian (75%) Americans express at least some support.2
Many seem to regard BLM as a humanitarian organization that fights on behalf of the downtrodden—as a nonviolent movement dedicated to protecting the rights of vulnerable citizens. However, this is not true. Founders and leaders of the organization advocate an ideology that calls for violence, and many of its supporters eagerly enact it.
Consider that BLM and its supporters have a long history of shutting down speech they dislike. In 2015, during a Bernie Sanders speech, BLM agitators stormed the platform, seized the microphone, and hurled obscenities at the audience.3 The event was suspended until security regained control and restored order. In response to such “deplatforming” and the violence that often accompanies it, many speakers no longer speak at college campuses—or do so only with an expensive military-like security detail that maneuvers tactically to and from the venue.4
High-profile speakers are not the only targets. On June 26, 2020, BLM protestors attempted, with screams and threats, to silence black men and women who articulated their reasons for defending the Emancipation Memorial in Washington, D.C.5 On July 13, BLM supporters disrupted a Baptist church service in Troy, New York, and assaulted parishioners.6 On September 25, BLM supporters threatened and physically assaulted journalist Ami Horowitz as he filmed them vandalizing private property.7
This—and many other incidents—also show that BLM’s aggression goes beyond silencing dissent. Many of its supporters openly engage in property destruction and criminal harassment. For months, we’ve seen surreal footage of BLM graffiti property, loot shopping malls, and torch buildings. On August 24, 2020, BLM supporters set fire to a used car lot—despite the fact that its owners displayed a sign reading “Black Lives Matter.”8 A Chicago BLM member aptly stated the policy on which BLM generally operates: “We have demands and they need to be met. . . . We’re not asking you anything. We’re telling you what’s about to happen with your permission or not. . . . You can listen or you can get ran [sic] over.”9
On September 4, at another D.C. restaurant, BLM supporters gave yet another display of this policy in action. They assaulted patrons, yelling at them, smashing their plates, and knocking over tables.10 And on September 7, in Pittsburgh, BLM supporters accosted elderly diners, screaming in their faces, “F—k white people.”11
Ever expanding their domain of intimidation, BLM thugs now harass innocent people from just outside their homes. Residents in Seattle and Washington, D.C., neighborhoods and many others are subjected to banging pans, screaming bullhorns, and graffiti. On August 17, in Seattle, BLM supporters screamed up and down neighborhoods—“Do you know that before your white ass came here, this was all black people?,” and “Give us our s—t back!”12 Motorists, too, are not safe. BLM punks barricade roads and freeways, vandalize cars, and attack innocent drivers who dare to object. Also on August 17, BLM hooligans forced a driver to crash his truck, at which point, they dragged him out and beat him to a bloody, unconscious pulp.13 The scope of BLM’s terrorism is staggering; nothing seems off-limits. Hawk Newsome, head of BLM Greater New York, admits as much: “If this system doesn’t give us what we want, we will burn it down and replace it.”14
These attitudes and actions of BLM are antithetical to the American way of life. America was founded on the principle of individual rights. True, it long violated the rights of black people. But generations of Americans, white and black, have struggled to render this country consistent with its founding principles—and they have succeeded to a tremendous degree. Our founding documents, including the Declaration and the Constitution, described these principles in terms of our inalienable rights to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness.15 The codification of these rights has contributed to a culture of individualism, entrepreneurship, self-reliance, and optimism.
Whether or not every BLM supporter recognizes it, the movement as a whole is working to erase the rights of people to hold differing views and act accordingly, to earn and keep property, and to assemble freely. Ultimately, this is what BLM wants to destroy—our freedom to live our lives as we see fit.
BLM is an anti-American movement because at its core it is a rights-denying movement. This is the meaning behind “If this system doesn’t give us what we want, we will burn it down and replace it.”16 When more Americans recognize the anti-American essence of BLM, they will no longer support this destructive organization.
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1. Fredrick Kunkle, “Protesters Target D.C. Diners, Triggering Backlash after Heckling Woman,” Washington Post, August 25, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/dc-md-va/2020/08/25/dc-protesters-blm-diner-confrontation/.
2. Kim Parker, Juliana M. Horowitz, and Monica Anderson, “Amid Protests, Majorities across Racial and Ethnic Groups Express Support for the Black Lives Matter Movement,” Pew Research Center, June 12, 2020, https://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2020/06/12/amid-protests-majorities-across-racial-and-ethnic-groups-express-support-for-the-black-lives-matter-movement/.
3. Tanya Basu, “Black Lives Matter Activists Disrupt Bernie Sanders Speech,” Time, August 9, 2015, https://time.com/3989917/black-lives-matter-protest-bernie-sanders-seattle/.
4. John W. Yelland, “Black Lives Matter Calls to Shut down Ben Shapiro at U of U,” KUTV, September 27, 2017, https://kutv.com/news/local/black-lives-matter-calls-to-shut-down-ben-shapiro-at-u-of-u; “BLM Protests Heather MacDonald at Claremont McKenna,” YouTube, April 7, 2017, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S8yck_4ixgI; Taylor Gee, “How the Middlebury Riot Really Went Down,” Politico, May 28, 2017, https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/05/28/how-donald-trump-caused-the-middlebury-melee-215195; Steven Nelson, “Backlash Spreads against Black Lives Matter Shutting down ACLU Event,” Washington Examiner, October 7, 2017, https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/backlash-spreads-against-black-lives-matter-shutting-down-aclu-free-speech-event.
5. Ryan Saavedra, “Watch: Black Americans Turn out to Defend Lincoln Emancipation Memorial from Radical Activists,” Daily Wire, June 26, 2020, https://dw-site-staging.dailywire.com/news/watch-black-americans-turn-out-to-defend-lincoln-emancipation-memorial-from-extremists.
7. Ami Horowitz, Twitter, September 24, 2020, https://twitter.com/amihorowitz/status/1309279771570954241?s=21.
8. Steven Symes, “Wisconsin Rioters Loot and Burn down Car Dealership,” August 24, 2020, https://news.yahoo.com/wisconsin-rioters-loot-burn-down-183000678.html.
9. Tom Elliot, Twitter, August 22, 2020, https://twitter.com/tomselliott/status/1297131110674182144?s=20.
11. Aaron Feis, “Watch Black Lives Matter Protesters Harass Pittsburgh Diners,” New York Post, September 7, 2020, https://nypost.com/2020/09/07/black-lives-matter-protesters-harass-pittsburgh-diners/.
12. Joshua Rhett Miller, “Seattle BLM Protesters Demand White People ‘Give up’ Their Homes,” New York Post, https://nypost.com/2020/08/14/seattle-blm-protesters-demand-white-people-give-up-their-homes/; Lasse Burholt, “BLM Waking up Washington—Screaming Loud, Hitting Pots, Blowing Horns in DC Residential Area,” August 9, 2020, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n-aYT9f9kXo.
13. Shane Dixon Kavanaugh, “Portland Protesters Beat Driver Unconscious after Crashing Truck near Black Lives Matter Rally,” The Oregonian, August 17, 2020, https://www.oregonlive.com/portland/2020/08/driver-of-crashed-car-is-beaten-blocks-from-downtown-portland-protests.html.
14. Mark Moore, “BLM Leader: If Change Doesn’t Happen, Then ‘We Will Burn down This System,’” New York Post, June 25, 2020, https://nypost.com/2020/06/25/blm-leader-if-change-doesnt-happen-we-will-burn-down-this-system/.
15. The term “property” is taken from the Declaration of Colonial Rights of 1774 and is in spirit with the rights enumerated by the Declaration of Independence.
16. Moore, “BLM Leader: If Change Doesn’t Happen, Then ‘We Will Burn down This System.’”