Dozens of Black Lives Matter protesters were pepper-sprayed, arrested and insulted during a peaceful demonstration Friday night, July 8.
Hundreds of protester gathered Friday at the Liberty Pole in downtown Rochester, after a hard week of police killing Black men in Louisiana and Minnesota, to not only send a message that Black Lives Matter but to also unite as a community.
Unfortunately, the protest ended with 74 arrests of men and women and dozens pepper-sprayed.
A Rochester resident Paloma Hernandez said in an interview, “we were practicing our rights to assemble, the First Amendment, the right to assemble in a public space. These technically are our streets.”
Police used force on protesters and got their way that night. Kendrick Chea who lives in the Rochester neighborhood said, “I was grabbed by one police officer when I was recording and he took my phone out of my hand and threw it. He called me an animal.”
The Rochester Police Department chief Mike Ciminelli claimed that they “handled a fairly large scale protest, again, with no injury, no use of any weapons.”
Some of the protesters arrested were later released that night, but about 20 to 30 protesters are still in holdings.
Here we see how the lone wolf attack in Dallas was used to justify the suppression of the BLM movement. The peaceful demonstration turned into the war field as police officers decided that they have now every right to openly express their hate against the protesters. We have come to a juncture where Blacks are no longer allowed to exercise their First Amendment.
Share this article and help to fight against police brutality in our communities.