Detroit’s attempt to control protesters has collapsed as the city’s police chief announced he would refuse to enforce a strict curfew placed on residents.
The real story, however, appears to be what protesters did after law enforcement confirmed the curfew would not be enforced.
While watching a demonstration Wednesday evening, Chief James Craig of the Detroit Police Department reassured peaceful protesters that he would not steamroll their rights.
“I support the voice. I support the peaceful protest,” Craig said, according to the Detroit Free Press. “That’s what I’m seeing now. Right now, I want to support these young people having their voices heard.
“This is a day of celebration”
Instead of lawless chaos, protesters peacefully marched for hours.
Video captured the scene as crowds of people moved around Detroit hours after Duggan’s now-toothless curfew took effect at 8 p.m. local time.
The scene at Michigan and Lafayette. Protesters still marching after it was announced the curfew won’t be enforced tonight by Detroit Police. pic.twitter.com/HJZb21KFHW
— Casey Harrison (@Casey_Harrison1) June 4, 2020
Detroit police decided not to escalate with riot police today, and the protest is continuing peacefully through downtown. Because all escalation in these protests has been started by the @detroitpolice. Keep it up Detroit. #DetroitProtest pic.twitter.com/mTBAkKF7Hj
— ekleezy (@ekleeezy) June 4, 2020
Although Detroit saw its share of police scuffles and arrests during the tumultuous events of last week and earlier this week, Wednesday’s massive protest was different.
Despite lasting hours past curfew, Wednesday’s peaceful demonstration didn’t result result in police issuing any tickets or making any arrests, according to the Free Press.
There was also no looting, though protesters had largely stayed away from such behavior prior to Wednesday as well, WDIV-TV reported.
When compared to ongoing chaos in places like New York City, it becomes obvious that Chief Craig made the right call by de-escalating tensions.
The peaceful protest also highlights an uncomfortable truth that government leaders aren’t likely to admit anytime soon.
When given liberty and freedom, the overwhelming majority of Americans are more than capable of acting responsibly and safely. Whether it’s COVID-19 lockdowns or curfews to prevent looting, the harsh restrictions seem to only make matters worse.
The peaceful turn of events in Detroit comes as further proof that reckless restrictions imposed by city and state leaders do nothing but trample on citizens’ constitutional rights.
With the chaos far from over in some places, the Wednesday actions of the Detroit police should serve as an example to departments nationwide.
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