When Frederick United arrived at the Baker Park Bandshell on Saturday for our protest, the first thing that felt off was the presence of two cops right in front of the stage.

When one team member tried approaching them and asking them if there was a threat or something we should know about, they simply shook their heads. When our DJ arrived, he immediately noticed that they had turned the power off. Frederick police Lt. John Corbett claimed that the power was always supposed to be off at the bandshell, yet for four successive months of protests, the bandshell’s power has been left on.

We managed to scramble and find a generator so the event could go on, but Frederick hurt us much less than the vulnerable communities that rely on the power: The homeless community. They need the power to charge their devices and stay in touch with family and friends.

Frederick inconvenienced us but actively oppressed Frederick’s homeless community for whom the bandshell is a lifeline.

After the two officers realized that we were not going away and not shutting up, they took things a step further: They announced through a plastic cone that they were no longer blocking off the street for our march, which the police had done for every protest thus far and that those who blocked traffic would be subject to criminal charges.

They told us we needed a permit, except there are no permits available for Baker Park at the moment because of the coronavirus crisis. But racial inequities don’t disappear because of a virus. In fact, they have gotten worse. We marched on the sidewalk until the already closed-off portion of downtown, with as many as 20 cops trailing us all the way, including when a man tried to shove one of our protesters to the ground. The police saw it happen and did nothing, even when we tried to get them to file a report. That leaves us wondering, justice for who?

Joel Lev-Tov, Kristen Lundy, James T. Aung, Madeleine Tison-Orrell, Brian Bowers, Erica Dickerson, Bianca Eaves, Dylan Cooley, Fiona Botwin, Brandie Hall, Alicia Rodriguez

The signers are all members of Frederick United and residents of Frederick

(34) comments

petersamuel

There's overwhelming support among the American people for equal rights and non-discrimination under the law, in politics, in employment and education. There is substantial support for discrimination in favor of members of under-represented groups (people of color) in education and employment. This pro-minority discrimination is widely practiced to advance 'diversity' despite its dubious legality. There are always odd exceptions but across all institutions these kinds of equality are in place, or favor minorities. The complaint we hear is that there isn't equality of outcome. But that can't be legislated. People's incomes for example vary for a host of reasons -- some discrimination to be sure but also the brain and personality they inherited and or/developed, their health, their family, their schooling, the connections they make, how hard they work, whether they save and invest well, and plain luck -- chance. All these things vary so much from one person to another you can't equalize life's outcomes. We can and should try and lift up those with the least regardless of race but it'd\s a fantasy to think equality of outcomes can be achieved.

As for BLM many of its supporters are doubtless people of goodwill, but the leadership in collaboration with Antifa is a bunch of anarchists, socialists, vandals and thieves who don't care about black lives, or any lives. In the name 'anti-racism' BLM are promoting the opposite -- racist division. They talk incessantly about a nearly non-existent white 'hate' while expressing themselves in hateful hectoring tones against random peaceable people dining outside or driving home, people who have done them no harm and are quietly going about their lives. BLM's rioting, their arson and looting, the vilification and attacks on police, none of these do a tittle of good for black lives. They slander America - its people and its history. They talk about justice but lust for power. Their fantasy of leading a revolution via challenging law enforcement just makes everyone's lives, black as well as non-black worse. Time for people of goodwill to cancel BLM.

PurplePickles

@petersamuel

You have the persona of a Caucasian male down pat, and you are very much aware of the privileged place you have in society. You are also aware of the fact that no one is listening to you anymore. We want to move forward, away from back in the day people, which you are one, we are tired of you holding us back. Your comment speaks volumes about you Peter Samuel.

petersamuel

So Purple Pickles to your way of thinking 'caucasians' have a distinct persona? And I suppose persons of Chinese origin have their ethnically determined persona and African-Americans are quite distinct in their genetically determined mode of thought. The notion that someone's ethnic origin establishes their thinking is quite simply racist nonsense, is it not? Second you say "we are tired of you holding us back." I am not aware of holding anyone back and I have never encountered anyone, or heard of anyone who wants to hold people back. Precisely what is it that is holding "you" back? No generalized grievance rhetoric please, give us the specifics of what it is that makes "you" feel "held back."

NewMarketParent

@petersamuel

Where do you get your information and if I were you I would absolutely question it. Literally no one is arguing for equal outcomes and those who say that people are are the same people who are building strawmen for you beat up.

All anyone is asking for is equality of opportunity along with equality of treatment. It is not controversial. But, because equality of opportunity has been twisted into the strawman of equality of outcome, you are inherently against it.

What's amazing to me is that you come in here parroting the exact same message that is fed to and I see conservatives regurgitating en masse. You don't seem to have any self-awareness that the words you type here have been fed directly into your brain by the media you consume and you regurgitate it here uncritically.

petersamuel

NMP: One of the early commenters wrote: "My one tenet in life that I follow with every fiber of my being is: We cannot be free until we are all equal." That sounds like equality of outcomes to me.

NewMarketParent

@petersamuel

Freedom is an outcome and not an opportunity? Really?

PurplePickles

@NMP

All anyone is asking for is equality of opportunity along with equality of treatment, exactly! As a white male Peter has never had to worry about not having equal opportunity nor equal treatment, he has always had that as a Caucasian male. So of course he is going to interpret "We cannot be free until we are all equal, as equality of outcomes. because he has always had an equal outcome. When you have never been oppressed you aren't going to see other people's oppression, you aren't going to see others lack of opportunity because you've always have opportunities. He sees the world through his persona of a Caucasian male. He isn't willing to look at the world any other way, to do so would be to give up his privileges.

threecents

Again, what is the point of having these marches over and over? Awareness will not be raised any higher than it is right now. Time to figure out what to do with that awareness. All these new marches are causing is backlash and new Covid cases. Of course you should have to get a permit to have a march in the city, and even more obvious is that the city should not grant permits while Covid-19 is still out of control. I support BLM, and these demonstrations are doing more harm than good to the cause.

NewMarketParent

@threecents

It is not just about awareness. It is a reckoning if you will. The annoyance you feel is directly proportional to the outrage that protesters feel to have to protest.

An easy way to get the protests to stop to make meaningful change to fix the reason for the protests. The expedient and undemocratic way to end them is to tweak the knobs to make them impossible to do. They are not meant to make everyone's life comfortable.

As much as it may suck to have to deal with them, it sucks more for the people who have to live with the things that have made them so uncomfortable that they feel the need to protest.

gdunn

I love an over embellished story with half truths.

public-redux

Which were the half-truths?

phydeaux994

How about over embellished stories with no truths ala Donald John Trump. There are tons of those with new ones every day.

neilyoungfan25

You have the right to protest. You do not have the right to free power and shutting down streets. Thank you to the City of Frederick!

PurplePickles

First off you are all incredibly brave in every way I can think off. But please please be careful. Be careful who you trust.

Every time a march is held it exposes the flaws of society, people are forced to face how awful "they" are, and I mean a collective they. People don't like when their flaws are constantly thrown back in their faces because they don't want to admit they are awful people. So every time they see you they are forced to look in the mirror at themselves and they are scared at what they see, often times it is very ugly.

They also feel trapped in their own mirrors of reflection. When people feel scared and trapped they are going to lash out at the ones that are trying to help them, so you need to be careful.

Law enforcement behavior is suspect at best, turning off the power to the band shell and not blocking traffic is how they are lashing out at you, the man that on purpose ran into you was also lashing out at you, they are both warnings, you can see them lashing out at you because they feel trapped. They are angry at you when in truth they are angry at themselves, and it's unlikely they are going to face their faults anytime soon.

They would prefer if you would just go away, they want you to shut-up and sing.

NewMarketParent

@PurplePickles

Exactly!

I would prefer to live my little life and not have to worry about dying because of the color of my skin. I would prefer that I didn't have to have the f***ing s***ty conversation that I am going to have to have with my kids that they will have to walk a constant tightrope in their lives or their punishment might be death. Do you understand how deflating walking around knowing that at some point you will have to have that conversation with your kids is? Do you know the toll that that takes on a life?

Most people that are complaining about the inconvenience that this imposes on them to have to drive around or walk around people.

What about the constant worry that you or you child might end up murdered for something completely asinine because they happen do be doing it while not having white skin.

Do any of the people complaining about the protest ever take the time think about walking in someone else's shoes and all the different ways that racism and bigotry exact a toll on people who don't look like you? It's easy to be dismissive. It's easy to say something incredibly stupid like: "If you just follow the laws, none of this would have happened." But, there are documented cases where people who were minding their own business were murdered and the murderers never have to deal with the ripples that they have created in the lives of the families who lost their loved ones.

NewMarketParent

Also... murder should not be how we deal with breaking the law. We have a justice system for a reason. Those who are ready to deal out justice, Judge Dredd style should be prepared to have their own lives scrutinized to that degree and dealt with in the same manner.

PurplePickles

#NMP

My one tenet in life that I follow with every fiber of my being is: We cannot be free until we are all equal.

I don't remember how old I was when it dawned on me the reasons that MLK was assassinated, the reasons why John Lewis was hated, and wow when it hit me it hit me hard, they wanted equality for all and I was stunned that was all. I was sickened and I still am because I didn't understand why it was a big deal, equality for all?

But then I realized who I was and understood that yes for me as the person I am, my equality scared the very same people MLK scared and John Lewis scared.

Caucasian men. You and I have more in common than we think. We are both fighting for our equality. We would not be here without each other, our movements are connected.

The civil rights movement is directly responsible for many rights I have today. Rights I try not to take for granted, without the civil rights movement leading the way I would not have found my way this far. I owe the civil rights movements for my freedoms I enjoy today.

But No I will never need to talk to my children about being not black, nor have to get sick to my stomach with fear when they leave my sight because I know they are not black. But that isn't right, it isn't fair that one child can come safe and the other may not just because......because there always needs to be someone to hate.

How as a civilized society can we think that's fair? Why can't we understand if we aren't all safe, then no one is safe. Yes it takes some serious critical thinking to understand that statement, just like it takes critical thinking to understand we cannot be free until we are all equal.

If you go forward so do I. I support the BLM movement because they are ones that will move us all forward. We know to much to go back.

NewMarketParent

@PurplePickles

Thank you for the empathy that you display here. I appreciate it.

What really boils my blood is that there are entire networks (looking at you Faux News and OAN) that are dedicated weaponizing confirmation biases so that they can get whites to disregard the humanity of not only people of another skin color, but also people of a different political party.

I don't think people are inherently evil if they are conservative. I do think there is a lot of really slippery-slope thinking and lack of critical or even empathetic thinking that tends to go hand in hand with modern conservatism.

Somehow, somewhere conservatives were told that they should hate their fellow countrymen and citizens, and they were like... "we are cool with that" with absolutely no push-back and its really sad that people fighting for fundamentally the same things you want and enjoy in life are considered your arch enemies.

PurplePickles

@NMP

Yes I am still very cognizant of the before time, before Faux News. and it seemed like it was a better time because there was no one saying out loud on TV who anyone should be biased against. But then came Faux News and people started to wake up and realize that since they can't hate themselves they needed to hate someone and Faux News told them who just as long as it was an other, thing is we are all others so we have all ended up hating each other for no reason?

There wasn't that much division between me and a Conservative before Faux News.

I recall voting for Reagan....lol I thought it was cool that Nancy Reagan wanted new china for the White House and made fun of her Just Say No campaign.

I was awfully proud of Hillary Clinton(yes I voted for Bill Clinton twice) when she was first lady because Obama Care is actually Hillary's baby. but hey if you want a job done right, you lead together. I'm pretty sure Hillary doesn't give one whit it's called Obamacare, she's just glad it passed.

Then Faux News told us who to hate and since you can't hate yourself you need to hate someone, I don't consider anyone an arch enemy, because I am not my own enemy, why would I fight myself? A Conservative and I both want the same things from the time before Faux News.

Blueline

It was the homeless who wanted the power cut off. They didn't want the noise disturbing them.

Greg F

Right.....and the Wright Bros. invented the Jet Fighter and flew it around in the first-ever flight in the world.

bosco

I didn't realize the city is expected to provide free electricity at the bandshell.

[ninja]

Greg F

Good spin attempt...not. It is common knowledge it was on if you were anywhere near the area as a local and the power would have been left on without incident if the racists weren't out there to shut it off so people couldn't voice their opinion against it. Yet...here you are with all your own hatred we've seen with all your past posts...trying to gaslight everyone once again.

Dwasserba

They're all Frederick residents. It's their electricity.

threecents

OK, here is a teachable moment for the BLM marchers. A potentially fixable problem has been identified - that homeless people go to places like the bandshell to charge their phones. Because the marchers have become a nuisance, the city shut may have shut off that power. How can the city or the residents provide a better way for homeless people to charge their phones? Maybe they used to go in the library, but the library is not open to visitors during the pandemic. I think there are lots of outlets outside at the Carol Creek promenade. The demonstrators managed to find a generator for their demonstration, so maybe they can figure some solutions to this issue. In other words: If you want to change things, then be part of the solution.

shiftless88

We all pay taxes and all deserve the same treatment and respect from city employees like the police.

Reader1954

maybe we are getting tired of you

shiftless88

Yes, those in power often dislike those who are not in power. How empathetic of you.

bosco

And those not in posert often dislike those who are not.

Vote!

[ninja]

Greg F

And those like you would be out wearing a hood if it were like back in the good-ol' days of white-yore. Now people don't put up with that crap....well...except like you, CD and a number of others vomiting hate every day in your comments.

NewMarketParent

And if it was as simple as voting, these problems would have been solved already. It's not just who holds power, but it is constructing systems of power that take everyone into account and that takes time. It is about have a feedback mechanism to fix when injustices happen. Protesting is one of those mechanisms.

bosco

Oh, geeze, fat fingers and small smart phone keyboard. Should be power, not posert. Sorry

[ninja]

NewMarketParent

@Reader1954

Maybe people are tired of losing their lives because of bigotry. And who is this WE?

petersamuel

NMP: what's the evidence that bigotry is the reason people are dying? Officer Derek Chauvin I think should and probably will be convicted of the murder of George Floyd for the utterly unjustifiable act of kneeing off his air supply for -- what was it -- eight minutes. And the other cops who stood by as accomplices seem likely to serve jail time... but is there really any evidence that bigotry motivated them. It seems more likely to me that they were engaged in payback for him having bested them in the wrestling before they got the handcuffs on him. They were going to make sure he didn't humiliate them again.

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