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Our cities are being besieged

Donald Trump and Bill Barr have initiated an action that is so blatantly un-American that I can hardly believe what’s happening. They are sending federal agents dressed in military garb to Portland, Oregon, under the pretense of “protecting federal property.” Furthermore, they are promising to send their “storm troopers” to other cities, all of which have Democratic mayors that they accuse of being “out of control.”

There are so many things wrong with this that I hardly know where to begin.

1. The mayor and governor did not request help. They actually have been trying to get them to leave. Likewise none of the mayors who are targeted for future raids want this invasion.

2. While they say their purpose is to “protect federal property,” they have been operating nowhere near federal property.

3. These “troops” wear the camouflage that is used by our military. The purpose of camo is to make our soldiers in battle blend into the scenery so they are not targeted. The “troops” that are being sent to our cities are not our military. (That would be against the law.) They are agents of several federal agencies including the Department of Homeland Security. They have no right to don the apparel of our military and do not wear any identification as to what agency they represent or what their names are. The misconception that they are military does, however, give them the appearance of strength.

4. The demonstrators that are being “detained” by these agents are for the most part peaceful. I know there are always some in demonstrations who are looking to cause trouble, but no one can deny the film of the Navy vet who was beaten and gassed when he just walked up to a group of these agents to talk to them. Others have been grabbed and whisked away in unmarked vehicles with no provocation or probable cause.

5. Policing is a power given to the state and local governments. The feds have no authority to intervene unless asked by local officials. This is federal intervention into a local matter.

6. The actions of these agents is provoking and actually making situations worse rather than helping to quell them.

Many of my Republican friends are still fans of Gov. Ridge who stated yesterday that it would be “a cold day in hell” before he allowed these troops to come into one of his cities if he were governor.

Mr. Trump has ads on TV that show rioting in the streets saying that will be Biden’s America. But what we have now is rioting and the stripping of our rights to assemble and free speech that is Trump’s America. By creating and exacerbating these situations, this administration is simply trying to turn us against each other.

Mr. Trump seems to be trying to compensate for his failure of leadership and ability to govern by showing his strength by sending these scary “little green men” into our communities to intimidate us. If only Mr. Trump would attack the COVID-19 virus as hard as he is attacking our citizens.

VERNA L CARUSO

Williamsport

Submitted via Virtual Newsroom

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