Protesters here in Minneapolis have been targeted by a series of highly intimidating, sweeping police raids across the city, involving teams of 25-30 officers in riot gear, with sub-machine guns drawn, entering homes of those suspected of planning protests, handcuffing and forcing them to lay on the floor, while law enforcement officers searched the homes, seizing computers, journals, and political pamphlets. Last night, members of the St. Paul police department and the Ramsey County sheriff’s department handcuffed, photographed and detained dozens of people meeting at a public venue to plan a demonstration, charging them with no crime other than “fire code violations,” and early this morning, the Sheriff’s department sent teams of officers into at least four Minneapolis area homes where suspected protesters were staying.
These “police” seem to be massively insecure. I have met many people similar to those arrested and they are the most harmless people not really known for anything more than their earnestness to protest! I don’t want to be too harsh on them because they are good people and mean well, but they are not really that radical, or in my opinion, willing enough to disturb the peace sufficiently to stage an effective protest. So, to send SWAT teams at them in a transparently obvious attempt to intimidate and frighten reeks of Soviet era police tactics. Shameful, but what you expect from the Republican party.
Here’s a video of interviews in the aftermath of the raid.