One woman's reaction shows how BLM's message can be easily misunderstood
A Black Lives Matter protest in Watsontown, Pennsylvania, was recently confronted by enraged counter-protesters. One video, which immediately went viral, shows a woman standing across the street from the BLM protesters and screaming expletives at them despite being met with calm responses in return. Seemingly infuriated by chants of "No justice, no peace," the unidentified woman retorted with an expletive while threatening to "give [them] no peace."
According to Newsweek, when one of the protesters attempted to de-escalate the situation by shouting "we love you" at the woman, she responded with several a few obscenities before yelling, "You live off of white people." She also went on to accuse the crowd of being communists and told them to "keep your HIV over there." According to LGBTQ Nation, the woman was part of a group including motorcycle club members, "three percenters, and other local residents."
The peaceful demonstration—organized by the "If Not Us, Then Who?" group—is said to have become tense after local police intervened and shut down three blocks of traffic when counter-protesters began harassing those marching for racial justice. "We didn't plan to block the street off. There was a confrontation in the middle of the street. Things are going to get ugly here," Watsontown Police Chief Rodney Witherite told reporters.
I see a lot of funny responses to this about this woman not being able to read. But it's not just ignorant people screaming in the street. There are judges, drs, teachers, bankers, and realtors who think like this. People who have power. That's how systemic racism functions.— MsJoyce (@joyshel5) June 29, 2020
Some of the men seen in the video beside the woman reportedly wore "Make America Great Again" and "Re-elect Trump 2020 Make liberals cry again" hats while one held a sign that reads, "Beer Matters. It's O.K. to kill a beer." Meanwhile, another man carrying a gun and shaking hands with a police officer is said to have sported a "III%" tattoo on his right arm—a possible reference to the Three Percenters, a far-right militia movement who consider themselves patriotic citizens fighting the tyranny of the U.S. government.
White supremacists fear a true meritocracy most. They fear the day when whiteness will not guarantee a job, house, status, etc. Trump reassures them that the system STILL chooses a person with no experience, no significant education, no plans, no morality because he is white.— Neeesha🇺🇸🇨🇦 (@Sylviagreen007) June 29, 2020
In another video filmed by photographer Paul Weaver at the Watsontown protest, a different woman is seen yelling from her car, "Democrats started the KKK," while a child beside her shouted "all lives matter," at passing Black Lives Matter protesters. As these disturbing clips went viral on social media, netizens severely condemned their behavior.
I’ve watched the video at least 3x and her thought processes in between each insult must be so vacant and empty. If people want to hold cops accountable, how does that mean they’re communist OR have HIV? 😂🤦🏽♂️— Fifty Shades of Whey (@davenewworld_2) June 29, 2020
Given everything I know about projection and the people who talk down to others, I am 100% positive she has collected welfare before.— Fifty Shades of Whey (@davenewworld_2) June 29, 2020
But non-wealthy whites have benefitted from the subjugation of and discrimination against Black people.— RobRobRobinAlong (@Robincha) June 29, 2020