Donald Trump had peaceful protesters tear-gassed so he could cross the street from the White House to take a photo in front of a damaged church.
According to Senior MSNBC producer Kyle Griffin, “Tear gas and flash bangs were deployed by police outside the White House to clear protesters so that Trump could go across the street to St. John’s Church for a photo-op.”
MSNBC correspondent Garrett Haake noted that the sudden escalation came completely from the side of law enforcement, not the protesters who were peacefully protesting all day.
“It was absolutely an extraordinary thing to see and experience with the White House in my peripheral vision,” Haake said.
Police tear-gassed peaceful protesters so Trump could cross the street for a photo-op. pic.twitter.com/QdIBA88uu5
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) June 1, 2020
I want to be super clear about what did and didn’t happen right there. Nothing happened on the side that the protesters were in. I was standing with those protesters. I have been with them since 2:00 this afternoon. It was by far the most peaceful day of protests we have had in D.C. since this started on Friday night. … Before the curfew was into effect, we had mounted federal police coming down H. Street from east to west clearing people out of the street. In front of them, they were using flash bangs, tear gas. I lost my regular mask and had to replace it with my gas mask so that we could continue to report as we were pushed down H. Street, down 17th St. behind me, and off onto Pennsylvania avenue, all while I was listening to the president of the United States speak in my ear about law and order. I was watching people fall down as they ran. I was watching people get pushed aside by police horses and by national guardsmen carrying military police shields. I was about 150 to 200 yards from the front gate of the White House when that was happening. That is what I experienced. That is what the tape shows. That’s what history is going to show for tonight. And I’m a little shook by the whole thing to be completely honest with you. It was absolutely an extraordinary thing to see and experience with the White House in my peripheral vision.
The chaos outside the White House came as Donald Trump was wheeled out of his bunker to deliver a statement on the protests that have swept across the globe since George Floyd was murdered by a police officer.
During his remarks, Trump poured gasoline on the already-raging fire. He sounded more like a wannabe dictator than he did a president who wants to calm tensions and bring the country together.
The unrest across America was already boiling over this past weekend as Donald Trump remained safely in his bunker. The moment he stepped outside the White House on Monday night, it got worse.
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Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.
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