(Please note that there will be mature themes in this post having to do with violence, death, and racism. I as a person fully support the Black Lives Matter protests as well as police reform movements, and this blog will be influenced by those stances. To those of you actively attending protests and putting your lives on the line, I thank you for your willingness to make this world a better place, and I ask you to please do your best to ensure your own safety as well as the safety of those around you!)
It's always good to fight for a cause you believe in! However, because of ongoing issues with police and systemic racism, violence can be extremely prevalent in these noble gatherings. In fact, these days you have to worry about the police inflicting violence upon you more so than getting hurt in a riot! While standing up to systemic racism can be a scary fight at times, I urge you to continue the fight and make the world a better place for all of us! But while you're out there protesting, you should always remember to keep yourself and those around you safe. I've seen many people on the internet giving their opinions and ideas on how to do this, so to do my part as well, I've made this blog to help people stay alive and well during the riots.
It's Dangerous to go Alone! (Take Friends!)
You should never go to a protest alone! Be sure to always have another person with you or even go in a small group. When you do go with friends, make sure that you designate a meeting spot for if you get separated from one another. It is also good to delegate roles, like who is watching the surroundings, who drives everyone there and back, and even who the leader will be in case of an emergency! These things may seem trivial but they are one-hundred percent necessary in case of an emergency. But most importantly always remember that there is safety in numbers and to group back up with your friends if anything happens!
ALWAYS BRING FIRST AID!!! (AND A TOURNIQUET!)
Regardless of what situation you're in, it's always a good idea to keep a first aid kit nearby. Considering that the police themselves are the issue here, it is a great idea to bring a tourniquet as well! Remember that even though they will have tear gas and rubber bullets, they will always still have REAL guns with REAL bullets. Police will mostly refrain from using these real guns, but its always better to be prepared, because bad cops obviously exist (that's the whole reason we are protesting!!!), they ARE a problem, and they WILL be looking for an excuse to use LETHAL FORCE! Because of this, be sure to read up on how to treat bullet wounds, I've found an article for you to check out here. Most importantly, be sure to look up some information on the LAW solution because tear gas will be the most common repellent used on protesters, alongside rubber bullets (wear goggles for protection, those can and will make you go blind!) Finally, for all of these things to be useful you must have access to them! Keep a backpack on you with these items AT ALL TIMES! Normally its okay to keep a first-aid kit in your car, but in a giant crowd of fellow protesters you (mark my words) WON"T BE ABLE TO MAKE IT BACK THERE IN TIME! So play it safe and keep your emergency supplies on you (where they can be the most useful)!
Use White Privilege to End White Privilege!
And so, we come to the elephant in the room. In these protests we are standing up to more than just crooked police, we are fighting against more than systemic racism, we are uniting against an entire way of thinking that has caused hate, pain, suffering, loss, and so much more evil in the world. But now, we are able to use that way of thinking against the enemy, for to smite them with their own evil is the ultimate victory! We are in a unique position as of late, in the fact that we are protesting the same body that is standing by to enforce peace and order. From this position we are able to use their own racism against them! Many of the sources I've pulled for this blog, suggest (and highly recommend!) that white allies shield people of color from police violence. This can be as extreme as forming a barrier of white allies between police and protesters to as minor as a white person filming the arrest of a black person! There is statistical evidence that police are more likely to inflict violence upon black people than upon white people. To truly show solidarity, we must be willing to protect our fellow man as if they were our own flesh and blood. These tactics can save lives, but whatever you choose to do, please try to ensure the safety of yourself and others!
Whenever I write anything I always try to take a passive narrator stance to maintain a certain degree of self removal and professionalism. But this Issue has gone on for too long and has taken too many innocent lives! And though this is not my fight, and no one person can change the world on their own, I will at least do all that is in my power to keep those fighting for a noble cause safe. Therefor I apologize for my personal intrusion upon this post, and I thank you for reading. No matter what happens in the world, please keep yourself and those you love safe, because as we can see in the case of George Floyd, a simple police stop can turn into a vicious murder.
As this is a more serious topic, I've documented every source I have pulled information on, so that those who read this blog are able to further their own education on the manner. Knowing more is always better than knowing less, please stay safe out there and fact check everything you read!