Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Did the UC Davis Protesters Provoke?

You know what they say about hind-sight? It has 20/20 vision. Looking back at the video of the UC Davis issue where the students got pepper-sprayed by UC Davis police for not leaving the campus after being told to do so, it is easy to see why they might have reacted the way they did. At the risk of sounding like I don’t know what the heck I am talking about, I do remember watching the videos the first go-around and thinking about the students in the background. I didn’t concern myself about the students sitting on the ground that were receiving the spray. After all, they were told to move, they were told if they didn’t they were going to get sprayed, they choose not to move, hence they choose to get sprayed. It is as simple as choosing one path over another. Regardless of the choice, there are consequences that one must take responsibility for.

If you look at the video, the campus police are surrounded by protesting students. The students were also asked to leave and they refused. They were violating campus policy by setting up the camps, which the head of the campus initially ignored. When the police were told to remove them, the students would not leave. So they got pepper sprayed.

Now comes along this video where one of the protesters basically said they provoked the pepper spray. It was their intended purpose all along.

One of the students sprayed, an Ellie Pierson (sp?) said the following:

“Well, we were protesting together and the riot cops came at us and we linked arms and sat down peacefully to protest their presence on our campus. At one point we had encircled them and they’re trying to leave and they’re trying to clear a path and so we sat down and linked our arms and said if they wanted to clear the path they would have to go through us.”

Once the video of the pepper spraying went viral, the left went absolutely nuts. Even the UC Davis Chancellor Linda Katehi, backed off her support of the police, whom she initially sent in and supported. The two officers have been put on administrative leave and the head of the cops has also quit. And there are calls for the chancellor to resign.

I might be in the minority here, but I do not feel any sympathy for the protesters. They were told to leave and they refused. They even challenged the authority of the police by blocking their attempts to leave. The police used non-lethal methods, and certainly, lethal methods were not called for here.


  1. I might be in the minority here, but I do not feel any sympathy for the protesters.

    Yes, you're in the minority, and you're also a prick.

  2. Hey Bret, way to further the dicussion. If you will note there have been others who have disagreed with my views on my little blog here, yet they have managed to avoid calling me names. As a positive outcome, we have been able to exchange ideas and thoughts. Normally, it ends up as a we agree to disagree situation. But I guess you are not interested in furthering the discusion. the one thing I always try to remember when holding discussions via the WWW, is whether I would talk like that to their face or in front of my mother. Using that as a starting point, I tend to have more civil discussions with those that disagree with me.

    BTW: I do appreciate you being a follower of my blog. Hopefully we can discuss views without the rancor.

  3. Righty,

    Yep! You definitely a minority here. People call me a lot of things, but a left wing liberal sure is not one of them. But I am no supporter of such po-lice tactics either.

    There was no restriction of copper movements here; watch the video again and see him simply walk through those evil protesters who were about as peaceful as rocks.

    Nope! Such po-lice violence sure does justify firing the criminal cops. Though I do not agree about the Chancellor.

    Our rights as Americans need permits? Yours maybe, but mine do not. Using our rights is a death sentence? Only by criminals in blue. Every one of them needs to reflect on what their oath is all about. Those that choose to support the criminals above them deserve a rope!


  4. Winston, when the news first broke about this incident, I would have to say i was nonpulsed, i.e., neither for our against either participants in the events. I did find it curious that most of the videos shown seemed to start moments before the pepper spraying began. No backgound. And as I pointed out in the post above, I was also a little interested in the fact the cops were surrounded by the protesters although I'm sure they didn't really feel threatened. It was just something that caught my attention briefly and I filed it away.

    I thought it was cowardly for the Chancellor to back the cops' actions, then backpeddle when outcry began.

    As for the permits and so forth, the Constitution states the "Congress shall pass no law..." I tend to focus on the first word: Congress. it doesn't say "City Boards..." or "County Comissions..." I might be going down the wrong path here, but in some of the readings I have done on this subject, and admittedly they aren't scholarly, the 1st Amendment applies to the federal level, not state or below. Based on the way I read it, the Constitution only blocks laws at the federal level.

    I'm really having a hard time here with calling this incident violent. Yes, the pepper spray hurts, no quesiton about that. But is it really violence? There has been more made over this than the incident in Oakland where the Iraq War Veteran was seriously injured during the police crackdown. These people were told to leave, they refused, they sat down, they were told yet again to move and once more refused. At what point is the law to be enforced? Do we get to pick and choose the laws we ignore? What if I wanted that nice DeWalt Drill down at the local hardware store? Just because I want to take it does that mean I get to ignore the law? Where is the line? At what point do we want the police to enforce the laws?

    I think the thing that chaps my hide on this issue is that these protesters were allowed to stay for several days without a permit, breaking the law. After a period of time of breaking those laws, they were told it was time to leave. No penalty if you just go.

    Did you watch the video at the link? Why would she say something like that? She clearly indicates the intent was to provoke. She says they were daring the cops.

  5. PACNW Righty,
    You are not in the minority. The leftists just want you to think so. When I watched the initia; reports, I saw the officer walk back and forth, showing them the pepper spray cannister and, giving them ample time to leave. One person did try to stand up, but was yanked back down (maybe the girl who is speaking out now?). I figured there was more to the story than we were being shown by the leftist MSM.
    By the way, I graduated from that leftist college (UCD) in 1986. I hated their politics then and despise them even more now. The only reason I went there is that it was close to home and I wanted to go to vet school. Never made it to vet school, and I could have been the reg. tech that I was with a 2 year degree. It was a waste of my time and money.