Monday, June 1, 2020

when it hits home not once but twice

A terrible senseless tragedy happened last Monday in Minneapolis with the murder of George Floyd.  I hope justice is served when the police officer comes to trial.

We are presently under a curfew here in the state of Arizona from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. until 5 a.m. on June 8th (but it can be extended longer).  There are exceptions to the curfew.  You can go to work.  You can be out to obtain food.  You can be out to take care of a loved one, friend, pet.  If you are a first responder, obviously you can be out . 

I totally respect PEACEFUL protests.  I detest protests that turn violent and cause damage and looting.

That is what happened here Friday night in Phoenix.  A lot of broken windows downtown where the protests were and grafitti'd buildings.  We took a drive down there on Saturday afternoon and saw the boarded up windows.  

Now here is where things start getting really interesting.  A city over from us, Scottsdale, is a pretty affluent city.  Myra will attest to that.  She'll also attest (I'm sure) that it has a nickname of Snotsdale due to the attitude of some people who live there.  

I thought for sure Scottsdale would not have protests and if they did that they would be peaceful ones.  I was WRONG!!  Saturday night was filled with looting and violence in Old Town Scottsdale and by the Fashion Square mall.  The Apple store was broken into (but thankfully Apple had put all their stuff away so nothing got stolen).  Neiman Marcus looted.  Urban Outfitters and some others.  The protesters (lets stop at this point calling them protesters and go to rioters) left the mall area and headed up the road, destroying some more buildings including a PF Chang restaurant.  If they had headed down the road they would have walked right by the restaurant son works at (he and the restaurant were fine, no damage).  

I thought the world had gone crazy that the Scottsdale people would do such a thing.  But as the story started coming out, it appeared perhaps it was people brought in to do the rioting and looting.  Jake Paul, a popular YouTuber with over 20 million subscribers to his channel, happened to be there at the protest (riot??) in Scottsdale and was filming it.  Jake Paul is not a native Arizonan and lives in Los Angeles.  How did he know to come over????? 

Now here is another thing really interesting.  Its okay if you stopped reading by now.  

Saturday afternoon while scrolling through Facebook I saw a protest that was turning ugly in La Mesa, California.  The protesters had taken over the freeway and shut it down for a long time, both east and west.  I woke up Sunday morning seeing pictures on my Facebook feed of businesses destroyed, burned down, looted.  A major shopping center, Grossmont Center, with significant damage.

I grew up in La Mesa, California from the age of seven and lived there until I got married at age 22.  Grossmont Center was a favorite hangout of mine.  One of the major streets vandalized was Spring Street, just blocks from where I lived.  La Mesa was a very family friendly, low crime town.  

Now here's another interesting thing.  From various sources, most of which I considered reliable, there were reports that groups were possibly going to be targeting some other shopping centers here in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area on Sunday night and perhaps even going into neighborhoods to pillage and cause damage.  

At this point and especially seeing the looting in Santa Monica, California and other cities, we tended to consider anything we read as being something to seriously think about so we made sure we were prepared just in case though we don't live in a fancy neighborhood.  We also warned son and DIL about what we had heard.

But thankfully the governor announced the 8 p.m. curfew starting last night.  It was a relief really.  I'm not sure what would have happened if the reports were true.  There was a protest last night in downtown Phoenix that didn't stop at curfew time so 200 people were arrested over the course of the next hour and a half for still being downtown and not off the streets.

We are dealing with more than "just" protests over an innocent man's life.  

Its calculated, its planned.  Hubby says he feels a game is being played.  He just wishes he knew how to play it and what the next move should be.

Watch yourself out there.  Be educated.  Read all you can.  

I follow tons of social media sites just to get a feel of what is going on.  

Again, its calculated.  its planned.  

Watch yourself out there.  

(and pray)


Veronica Lee said...

Videos of the violent protests popped up on my Youtube feed and I was pretty shaken by the images. So sorry that this is happening in the US. Everything seems to surreal.

Take care, my friend and stay safe.

Praying for America.

Bijoux said...

Don't believe what social media says. Our downtown was essentially destroyed Saturday night. 99 looters were arrested. Guess what? They were all from this state, with the vast majority from this county. Some drove as far as 30 miles! LOL! There are bad people living here and I'm unsure of the motive of those on social media who want to blame organized groups.

It's a mob mentality and it can happen anywhere and people can easily get caught up in it. Meanwhile, small businesses and restaurants who barely survived Covid are now facing this and insurance does NOT cover things like civil disobedience in most policies. Our downtown is totally blocked off from those who don't live there, so my spouse, who just went back to work, is back to having to work from home. Frustrating.

As far as organizers targeting elite communities, we heard that a protest was going to happen in Chagrin Falls, which is a 'rich suburb' here. Businesses were worried. Guess who was behind the protest? A local high school student. Fortunately, he called an end to it, after discovering that word had got it that there was a possibility of violence.

DUTA said...

Violence and looting do not honor the memory of the victim. I'm afraid those violent protesters had anything but the victim on their mind. Their goal was Destruction

Mevely317 said...

Good read, my friend! So glad to know your son's workplace wasn't affected! Why, from what you've shared, that might well have been the final straw. Yesterday's news -- both FB rumor mill and Maxwell AFB -- warned of "busloads of people" headed into Montgomery. Both the Federal Courthouse and Capitol were shuttered, and in an upscale shopping complex several merchants were boarding up their windows. Nope. I don't believe for a minute these (so-called) protesters give a whit about poor George Floyd. I call them domestic terrorists, and pray for all who are out there trying to keep the peace.

jack69 said...

Thanks for a very serious heartfelt entry. Serious, honest and true citizens protest untenable conditions. Crooks and ner-do-wells along with mindless 'lets get ours' attitude join in riots and looting.

I fear, because I ask, "If I were a policeman what would I do if my life was in danger, if I was in a squad car being slammed and windows being broken out. What is a dedicated LEO supposed to do?????
Yes prayers and a plea for God help us..... :-(

Mellie said...

Thankfully the protests here have been peaceful, so far. Someone I know was planning to go and bring her young kids - go if you want, but why bring kids into a hot situation?? Nothing bad happened, but how do you know that will always be the case?! Clint has been reading and pretty much said the same as you -- it's all planned!!

Debby said...

Good post Betty. We've had several peaceful marches. However, the one planned for tonight in a retail shopping parking lot at 6:30 has many concerns. Of course, the rumors are floating around, and then the news media fans the flames and our city government officials are hiding. Half our police force is down in the bay area. WTH???

I just HOPE and PRAY it is safe and peaceful and turns out well. I do want to know, how many protests and marches are needed? When will it stop? Is this our new way of life until there is justice for George Floyd? How long do we have to wait for a trial? This isn't going to just STOP.

Sad times we are in - Oh Jesus, take me now.

Mary Kirkland said...

I agree. I think most people are out there t be peaceful but some from out of state came just to cause problems.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

If there isn't justice served this violence will happen again! Ours is 6pm. I agree, peaceful protests are fine with me. What is happening is not right. Solves nothing. I have to agree, I truly believe almost all the protests were set up in advance. The evidence is out there, the bricks were delivered in advance. There is paperwork looking for people to come to these protests. God forbid maybe that police office was told to start something, get the ball rolling.

The Awkward Widow said...

I agree ... these looters and vandals are being brought in to do DAMAGE not to protest. Despite Portland 8pm curfew, the police and medics are working through the night. the fact that now these leaders of violence ARE aiming for wealthy suburbs. I live in one. Our cars are not in garages. We are two blocks from downtown. I am trying to find ways to interrupt racism and I have found a local Respond to Racism group as well as an organization that mentors at risk teenagers, Word is Bond (started here but spreading, I hope)

We cannot go back in time to repair history and so many young folks are blaming and name calling and wanting statues taken down. I think we start NOW and be a positive influence.

And stop with all the name calling and saying white people cannot post quotes from Martin Luther Kind.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I'm definitely praying that all this will come to a peaceful resolution. The riots and luting will not prove anything. I have seen a few peaceful protests and that gives me hope. Much more can be accomplished peacefully than hatefully doing damage to people and their businesses. We do have to be alert to what is going on around us. Whether or not close to home, it all affects us and we need to remember that all lives matter.

Chatty Crone said...

I agree with you.
Protest for George Floyd.
Looting and rioting is not for George, it is for some other reason.
They are ruining their own country. Wonder why they want to do that - now?

Liz A. said...

Yes, it's terrible. They shut down stores at 1 PM yesterday here.

The protesters are peaceful. But there are opportunists who are using the protesters to mask their appetite for destruction. And don't forget all the cops that are exacerbating the situation. There are videos of them opening up on peaceful protesters (shades of 1968) with no provocation.

It's a mess. Funny how the protests over having to stay at home and wear a mask (with gun toting protesters) didn't turn violent. I wonder why that was. Perhaps because those in authority agreed so they didn't let the cops go after them. Where are these gun toting people now? Now that the government is threatening to unleash the military on civilians?

Jeanette said...

Great post! And I totally agree with you..something else is going on. Those rioters don't have George Floyd's death on their minds. They are using that as an excuse to riot and loot store. We had a protest here last night and they walked down a main street to Somerset Mall which is a very high end mall here in Michigan. I half expected the mall to get looted but thankfully nothing happened! It's scary times right now.

Himawan Sant said...

I am also concerned about this event, whose news was broadcast on several television stations in my country. I pray for the situation to be safe again.
Greetings from me in Indonesia.

nashvillecats2 said...

I saw this on You Tube and was very saddened. I do hope peace will reign supreme once again soon.


Victoria Zigler said...

Stay safe.

Secret Agent Woman said...

There's a lot of misinformation out there. Without trying to speculate on who is actually behind the rioting and looting, the part that is clear for me is that Black men are being targeted unjustly and should not be fearing for their lives just because of their skin color.

Ann Bennett said...

Hypocrisy knows no bounds. And in my opinion the looters and rioters are hypocrites. They take a serious situation and exploit it for their own ends.

The protests are healthy. They are full of twenty somethings which speaks to me a huge cultural shift in which people will expect all people to be treated equally. It won't happen in that this is the human race. But maybe it will be reduced.

The root of these protests are low wages. People are working the same and being paid less. When you look at how profitable a McDonald's franchise is and they pay low wages and only give some about two hours to work in a given day because it works for them.

This is not our generation's fight. It is the millennials who are marching into the mainstream of society. The economy is going to be difficult on all of us. One of the problems with cutting taxes to the bone is there is no fat to carry us over.

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

The looters and rioters are a blot on the legitimate protests and what they represent. Some are probably just criminal, greedy people, but I fear some are intentionally interfering with the message.

Big Mark 243 said...

...while I cannot absolve all the protesters from this mess, it has been documented that there are a number of people who are opportunists and are deliberately adding to the anarchy... so many reasons and motivations for why they are doing what they are doing... but this is an opportunity for them to sow destruction and blame on the main movement...

Pat Hatt said...

The looters and rioters are just rotten humans to begin with. They are taking advantage of those trying to protest peacefully and bring change and are just as bad as those being protested against.

JA said...

I have read that some of the looters are giving false addresses to appear to come from the local area. This has been planned for some time. Nothing is as it seems.

Martha said...

So sad that there are people wreaking havoc and interfering with the legitimate message that the peaceful protesters are trying to bring forward. There are always the bad apples that mess things up.

Juli said...

I had to come back to comment here. Our town (largest in the state) had a peaceful protest last night. Then it went to virtual, because there were credible facts that a hate group would be targeting it to turn our downtown upside down, then a few hours before they made it back to a peaceful live event. And it was peaceful. So peaceful that during the 9 minute die in, the town bell could be heard chiming.

I do not know what it's like to be black. But I do know what it's like to be chased out of a neighborhood because I was white. It was terrifying. Oldest has a friend who is deeply emerged in his African Heritage. He called him for his take on it all. It was a 3.5 hour conversation, that left him with somewhat of a new view on why the anger is there. His advice? Get off social media. There's more untrue, than true. And it's spreading more hate than love.

Lisa said...

Same thing going on here in NC. Looters, riots and chaos. I can’t wait til it all ends....or will it? Who knows now days as crazy as it has gotten.
Prayers for our Nation.

DMS said...

The protests near my house have been peaceful. Many have involved the police and protesters working together towards the same goal. I have heard that in some places where a lot of violence has broken out that there have been paid protesters there to start rioting and breaking in to places. I can't imagine that- but I know things like that have gone on for a long time (people in the early 1900s got paid to break up strike lines and many of those ended violently as well). It is important to get news from many sources! Stay safe.

Darla M Sands said...

There are definitely big players at work manipulating folks. ~shudder~ My husband, God bless him, follows a lot of independent sources and keeps me informed while sparing me most violent video. Meanwhile, I'm so thankful we live in semi-rural Southwest Ohio and continue praying other communities follow our residents' example. Too bad we can't spread peace so easily as fear, anger, distrust, and hatred. Ugh... I'm glad your son didn't get caught in this latest atrocity. Stay safe!

Wendy said...

I hear ya! We have some craziness here in Virginia too. I believe peaceful protesters and looters are not the same people.

netablogs said...

I am so sorry to hear all about what is going on in the States right now. Praying that peace and justice will come sooner rather than later!

Nasreen said...

Stay safe, its getting so scary. So sorry for all these happening.

Martha@SeasideSimplicity said...

Hi Betty, I believe it's all part of a plan too and it scares me to death. We are certainly living in some crazy times! I hope you and your hubby are staying safe and healthy. Now I'm off to scroll through to see if I can find photos of the new pup! It's good to be back in touch once again.