May Day protests in Seattle

Since I consider Western Washington to be my home, even though I’m not actually living there (yet), the news I watch each day usually originates from Seattle.  I have learned that there have been protests in Seattle each May 1st for a number of years.  Many protesters were peaceful and were marching for better benefits for working people.  Unfortunately, not all of the protests were peaceful.

The violent group of protesters identify themselves as anarchists.  They walked with a banner that proclaimed that it didn’t matter who was elected, that they were ungovernable.  This group’s trademark attire is wearing all black, especially a black hoodie, black mask, goggles, and sometimes a Guy Fawkes mask.

If I understand the belief system of this group correctly, it is that they do not believe they should be bound by any laws and should, basically, be allowed to do whatever they want to, wherever they want to, whenever they want to.  Most civilized people realize that this is not a realistic belief system on a planet inhabited by 7.4 billion people, and counting.  You’re always going to have someone exercising their perceived right to do whatever, where such action restricts another person to do what they want.  Again, civilized people recognize that anarchy is not good.

Something was different this year in Seattle when compared with previous years.  A few days before May 1st, many businesses in downtown Seattle boarded up their store windows to keep them from being smashed by anarchist protesters.  What the anarchists didn’t count on was that the Seattle Police Department was very well informed this year and they were very well organized.

Seattle Police were out in force at the beginning of the protest and the police dictated where the protesters went.  The protest began around 5 pm.  By 10 pm, the police had herded the protesters to a Costco parking lot, where the anarchists began vandalizing property.  The police made arrests and the remaining protesters disbursed.  I was amazed to see that, by 10 pm, the protest was basically over.  Unfortunately, several police officers were injured, thankfully none of them seriously.  At last count, I believe there were 9 arrests.

Other than being amazed at how efficiently the Seattle Police handled the situation, something else occurred to me.  One of the local news stations interviewed an anarchist protester and this guy was very upset that the police didn’t allow them to go wherever they wanted.  After all, they were just angry and trying to demonstrate that.  So, if you’re an anarchist, everyone gets to do whatever they want, even if it infringes on someone else.  It seems to me that the police would be covered by this philosophy as well.  Anarchy does not mean that one individual must stand by and let another individual do whatever.  It’s basically a free-for-all.  The strongest wins.  Well, the police were strongest yesterday and it appears they won.

I doubt any of the anarchists would agree with this analysis, but their philosophy isn’t logical anyway.

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