Oakland’s Trayvon Martin Protests Underscore City’s History of Racially Charged Violence
This is just bogus, a small handful of persistent idiots are destroying the property values and futures of tens of thousands of people who have to live with this crap in Oakland. Thinking you are right and taking violent action because of it … where have I seen that before? Oh yeah, in Florida.
The magnitude differs, but the concept doesn’t - so this morning some kids in Oakland are going to walk to school over broken glass because of some assholes.
When protests in Oakland, Calif. took a violent turn Saturday night, it was nothing the city hadn’t seen before.
More than a hundred demonstrators gathered downtown to march against the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial, which allowed a man who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager to walk free. But while other events that materialized across the country remained mostly peaceful, Oakland’s were marred by window-smashing, flag burning and other forms of vandalism, including aggressive graffiti declaring “Kill Zimmerman” and “F*ck the Police.”
Though Saturday’s activity was relatively tame compared to past instances — nobody was arrested or visibly harmed — it’s a story that unfolds time and again in the small port city on the San Francisco Bay.
“You can’t go six months without something getting smashed,” longtime Oakland resident Max Allstadt, who attended the protests, told The Huffington Post. “The people doing it have various ideological justifications, but outside the Twitter echo chamber they’ve created for themselves, there’s not a lot of support.”
Twitter lit up with commenters both encouraging and denouncing the destruction. “Do you know why some groups feel the need to march and break windows in #Oakland? Because nobody is listening to their demands for fairness,” tweeted Steven Tavares, a reporter for the East Bay Citizen. “Not sure why Oakland business are suffering because of Florida’s sh*tty laws, if you care to explain,” responded @JulioD. Occupy Oakland attempted to settle the matter with the widely re-tweeted, “Calm down, twitter. A few broken windows in #Oakland is not a #riot, its a dance party.”
In recent years in Oakland, events that have often started as peaceful marches have quickly turned aggressive. During an Occupy rally on May Day last year, authorities used tear gas to disperse rioters. In the months that preceded the May confrontation, the city had become a national symbol of violent clashes between protesters and police.