Harney County, OR — As the standoff in Harney County continues, so do the calls for government violence as well as the support for the occupiers.
Whether or not you agree with the armed protesters at Malheur national wildlife refuge, calling for them to be ‘disemboweled’ or ‘mowed down’ by agents of the state is a horrible idea.
There is the notion that if these protesters were black, they would have already been killed, but, for the most part, that notion is false.
In September of 2011, hundreds of protesters took to New York City, erecting tents and breaking the city’s loitering laws. None of these protesters were killed despite many of them staying for months on end. Yes, some arrests were made, many of them horrifying and violent, but no one was ‘disemboweled’ or mowed down.
In Ferguson, Missouri, 2014 was a monumental year for raising awareness to police brutality. Outside of the riots, thousands of peaceful protesters gathered day in and day out. Many of these peaceful protesters were armed and black, yet they were not met with violence. At one point, the Free Thought Project’s Rebel Z, who was live streaming on location, documented the protesters storming the police station in an effort to take it over.
— deray mckesson (@deray) December 31, 2014
Again, no one was killed — and this was a good thing.
Because of the location of these protests being in highly populated areas, the protesters, while not being killed, were certainly met with plenty of police violence. Gallons of pepper spray was blasted into the faces of countless protesters and media alike over the course of Occupy Wall St. and Ferguson.
Up until now, many argued that because the Oregon protesters were all white, they haven’t been killed or arrested. However, one of the occupiers, who’s been there since the beginning, spoke with the Guardian on Saturday, and he smashes this paradigm.
Brandon Davis, 31, is one of the several dozen protesters involved in the occupation of the wildlife refuge — and his skin color happens to be black.
For the first time since the occupation began, Davis has been interviewed by the media and what he has to say may cause some heads to explode.
Davis is encouraging Black Lives Matter activists to travel to Harney County to learn about the Constitution.
“I would encourage more black people to come here to get educated,” Dowd said on Saturday. “They could learn a lot being here and talking to these constitutional lawyers.”
According to the Guardian,
Dowd, who said he mentors youth, has been camped out at the refuge for about a week and frequently does armed security rotations. He rarely attends the militia’s daily press conferences, but decided to stand alongside leader LaVoy Finicum on Saturday morning, because he said he was passionate about Finicum’s complaints about the FBI allegedly spying on the occupiers.
Dowd said he was first inspired by Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s victorious standoff with the federal government over land-use rights in 2014. When he saw that Cliven’s son, Ammon, was leading a similar battle against the government in Oregon, Dowd decided he wanted to experience the protests in person.
“I just had enough of … seeing others being mistreated,” said Dowd, who grew up in Detroit. “I just felt like it was time for me to be a part of it.”
Dowd proposed a potential solution for Black Lives Matter activists that is similar to what the Oregon occupiers are trying. It’s called a “common law grand jury.”
The idea behind the common law grand jury is that locals can operate outside of the court system and hold corrupt government officials accountable.
Dowd told the Guardian that he would like to see the Black Lives Matter activists research the ‘grand jury’ model and apply it to the corrupt law enforcement in their areas.
“Go to the sheriff in your county, and if he is corrupt, then you need to raise a grand jury on your own and outline the documentation of the wrongdoing,” he said. “This is what this is about – finding a better way of doing things.”
“It’s time for our generation to wake up,” Dowd said as he encouraged more young adults to come out to the refuge. “I have to stay here until justice has prevailed,” he said.
As people use this standoff to promote their agendas on different sides of the political spectrum, the fact that police have yet to move in and initiate violence is not only something to be pointed out, but it should be praised. Cops not killing peaceful people, regardless of race, is a good thing.
Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world.