Over 93% of BLM demonstrations are non-violent (1 Viewer)

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So, rather than burying this subject in an already broad thread I felt this topic, and the study it is based on, deserved its own thread. A debate about whether the protests have been mostly violent or not has been had multiple times in multiple threads so when I saw this analysis it piqued my interest.

A few key points: It characterizes the BLM movement as "an overwhelmingly peaceful movement." Most of the violent demonstrations were surrounding Confederate monuments. To this mostly non-violent movement, the government has responded violently, and disproportionately so, to BLM than other demonstrations, including a militarized federal response. The media has, also, been targeted by this violent government response. There is a high rate of non-state actor involvement in BLM demonstrations. Lastly, there is a rising number of counter-protest that turn violent. I shouldn't say lastly because there is, also, a lot of data relating to Covid too.

The Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) begin tracking BLM demonstrations since this summer, the week of George Floyd's killing. I am linking the entire study for all to read. I am highlighting excerpts I personally found interesting.


The vast majority of demonstration events associated with the BLM movement are non-violent (see map below). In more than 93% of all demonstrations connected to the movement, demonstrators have not engaged in violence or destructive activity. Peaceful protests are reported in over 2,400 distinct locations around the country. Violent demonstrations, meanwhile, have been limited to fewer than 220 locations — under 10% of the areas that experienced peaceful protests. In many urban areas like Portland, Oregon, for example, which has seen sustained unrest since Floyd’s killing, violent demonstrations are largely confined to specific blocks, rather than dispersed throughout the city (CNN, 1 September 2020).

Yet, despite data indicating that demonstrations associated with the BLM movement are overwhelmingly peaceful, one recent poll suggested that 42% of respondents believe “most protesters [associated with the BLM movement] are trying to incite violence or destroy property” (FiveThirtyEight, 5 June 2020). This is in line with the Civiqs tracking poll which finds that “net approval for the Black Lives Matter movement peaked back on June 3 [the week following the killing of George Floyd when riots first began to be reported] and has fallen sharply since” (USA Today, 31 August 2020; Civiqs, 29 August 2020).

Research from the University of Washington indicates that this disparity stems from political orientation and biased media framing (Washington Post, 24 August 2020), such as disproportionate coverage of violent demonstrations (Business Insider, 11 June 2020; Poynter, 25 June 2020). Groups like the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) have documented organized disinformation campaigns aimed at spreading a “deliberate mischaracterization of groups or movements [involved in the protests], such as portraying activists who support Black Lives Matter as violent extremists or claiming that antifa is a terrorist organization coordinated or manipulated by nebulous external forces” (ADL, 2020). These disinformation campaigns may be contributing to the decline in public support for the BLM movement after the initial increase following Floyd’s killing, especially amongst the white population (USA Today, 31 August 2020; Civiqs, 30 August 2020a, 30 August 2020b). This waning support also comes as the Trump administration recently shifted its “law and order” messaging to target local Democratic Party politicians from urban areas, particularly on the campaign trail (NPR, 27 August 2020).

Despite the fact that demonstrations associated with the BLM movement have been overwhelmingly peaceful, more than 9% — or nearly one in 10 — have been met with government intervention, compared to 3% of all other demonstrations. This also marks a general increase in intervention rates relative to this time last year. In July 2019, authorities intervened in under 2% of all demonstrations — fewer than 30 events — relative to July 2020, when they intervened in 9% of all demonstrations — or over 170 events.

Authorities have used force — such as firing less-lethal weapons like tear gas, rubber bullets, and pepper spray or beating demonstrators with batons — in over 54% of the demonstrations in which they have engaged. This too is a significant increase relative to one year ago. In July 2019, government personnel used force in just three documented demonstrations, compared to July 2020, when they used force against demonstrators in at least 65 events. Over 5% of all events linked to the BLM movement have been met with force by authorities, compared to under 1% of all other demonstrations.

Non-state groups are becoming more active and assertive. Since May, ACLED records over 100 events in which non-state actors engaged in demonstrations (including counter-demonstrations) — the vast majority of which were in response to demonstrations associated with the BLM movement. These non-state actors include groups and militias from both the left and right side of the political spectrum, such as Antifa, the Not forking Around Coalition, the New Mexico Civil Guard, the Patriot Front, the Proud Boys, the Boogaloo Bois, and the Ku Klux Klan, among others (see map below).3

Between 24 May and 22 August, over 360 counter-protests were recorded around the country, accounting for nearly 5% of all demonstrations. Of these, 43 — nearly 12% — turned violent, with clashes between pro-police demonstrators and demonstrators associated with the BLM movement, for example. In July alone, ACLED records over 160 counter-protests, or more than 8% of all demonstrations. Of these, 18 turned violent. This is a significant increase relative to July 2019, when only 17 counter-protests were reported around the country, or approximately 1% of all demonstrations, and only one of these allegedly turned violent.
 

CoolBrees

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Thank you for posting this.

I was going to but I feel those on this board that actually need to read and digest it wouldn’t accept it from me as my opinion is seen as extremely biased.

ETA- the protests are even more rarely violent. They are not peaceful (as in property damage) but violence towards people is even more rare
 

RebSaint

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I don't post much anymore, but I just wanted to jot down a random collection of thoughts that have a lot to do with the current political climate and race relations. I figured this thread would be the best place.

Associating or connecting black protest with violence and/or criminality is nothing new to the right, and has been very much a part of the southern strategy, which is largely the reason we have Trump. Much of the right has doubled down on stoking white anger, fear, and loathing of minorities pointing out the perpetuation of institutionalized oppression in the present day. Painting BLM with the broadest "violent" and "radical" brush is reminiscent of Nixon supporters clamoring for "law and order" while ignoring the continuation of Jim Crow policies, practices, and institutionalized racism. In many ways, we're seeing history repeat itself and as usual, there will be many on the wrong "side" of history on lots of these issues.

The most ridiculous allegation I've seen is that BLM favors the destruction of the nuclear family because they support Marxism. Yes, this claim has historical dimensions going back to the proslavery argument before the Civil War.

The dye was caste for the Republican Party in the 1970s when Lee Atwater first articulated the southern strategy as largely a winning formula for the Republican Party. The southern strategy also allowed the creation of enough endless culture/race conflicts to distract voters to ignore the fact that the Republican Party has increasingly supported policies that ignore the Middle and working classes and cater more towards the top 1%. The problem, though is that in order to keep going back to the well of the southern strategy, the right has had to push the envelope further and further, ergo the emergence of Trump. The assault on mainstream journalism, too has provided an ecosystem that is--quite literally--an alternative reality to fact-based analysis of politics and social issues that has created bizarre, but effective conspiracy theories from Pizza-gate to Birtherism. This ecosystem, too has brainwashed many that providing minorities basic equality and/or rights will somehow erode "traditional" American culture. The fact that a lot of Republicans are distancing themselves from this unfortunate direction of the party, and "conservatism" in general (I would argue that Trump is absolutely not a conservative and doesn't believe in anything) is a testament to how damaging the legacy of the southern strategy has been to serious discussion of policies within contemporary political culture.
 
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Thank you for posting this.

I was going to but I feel those on this board that actually need to read and digest it wouldn’t accept it from me as my opinion is seen as extremely biased.

ETA- the protests are even more rarely violent. They are not peaceful (as in property damage) but violence towards people is even more rare
Yeah, they highlighted Portland, specifically, and I found these passages enlightening:

Prior to the deployment of PACT at the start of July, approximately 8% of demonstrations in Oregon were met with government intervention, and authorities infrequently used force against demonstrators. Since July, however, nearly 28% of demonstrations have been met with intervention and force by government personnel. In Portland specifically, under 24% of demonstrations were met with state force before July. Since July, this figure has risen to 40% of all demonstrations (see graph below).

Although federal authorities were purportedly deployed to keep the peace, the move appears to have re-escalated tensions. Prior to the deployment, over 83% of demonstrations in Oregon were non-violent. Post-deployment, the percentage of violent demonstrations has risen from under 17% to over 42% (see graph below), suggesting that the federal response has only aggravated unrest. In Portland, violent demonstrations rose from 53% to nearly 62% of all events after federal agents arrived on the scene.
 

MT15

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Anyone who was sentient in the 1960’s will recognize the current events. It’s Richard Nixon’s playbook, pretty much. Racist then and racist now.

I would have hoped that it wouldn’t work on Republicans again. So far, it’s been disappointing to see how much disinformation they uncritically swallow, especially since Trump is so completely “out there” with it.

In Nixon’s time there was a limit to their pandering, they spoke in code and dog whistles. Trump just says the stupid stuff right out loud. “Biden wants to destroy the suburbs, Kenosha is ablaze and wouldn’t even exist if not for Trump.” They “cleaned up” Portland, against all evidence that the feds made everything much worse.

If Trump is allowed to have his way, there will be much more violence than we have now. Because he likes it, or rather he thinks it helps him win votes. He doesn’t give a crap about the violence or it’s terrible effects, that much he has made clear. He has nothing but contempt for anyone not named Trump.
 

MT15

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Also, there is a disturbing new political ploy, all rioters are now labeled as BLM supporters without any proof. BLM doesn’t support violence. Their whole reason for being is to combat violence against black people.
 

not2rich

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Anyone who was sentient in the 1960’s will recognize the current events. It’s Richard Nixon’s playbook, pretty much. Racist then and racist now.

I would have hoped that it wouldn’t work on Republicans again. So far, it’s been disappointing to see how much disinformation they uncritically swallow, especially since Trump is so completely “out there” with it.

In Nixon’s time there was a limit to their pandering, they spoke in code and dog whistles. Trump just says the stupid stuff right out loud. “Biden wants to destroy the suburbs, Kenosha is ablaze and wouldn’t even exist if not for Trump.” They “cleaned up” Portland, against all evidence that the feds made everything much worse.

If Trump is allowed to have his way, there will be much more violence than we have now. Because he likes it, or rather he thinks it helps him win votes. He doesn’t give a crap about the violence or it’s terrible effects, that much he has made clear. He has nothing but contempt for anyone not named Trump.
The main difference between then and now is Facebook. I would have said the electorate is much different now, and it is, but FB allows the far fight to amplify their message with an alternate reality the rest of us don't live in. And you can't break through to those people.
 

Taurus

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What I can't figure is why the media doesn't make the obvious statement about the counter protests.

If BLM is protesting against police brutality and racism...counter protests must therefore be in support of abuse and racism.

Also, they really need to stop calling these far-right outfits "militias". They aren't. A militia has some connection to legitimate government, some kind of approved purpose. The phrase begins with "well-regulated" right?

So these skinheads aren't militias, they're gangs. Heavily armed gangs. Call the spade a spade, please.
 

insidejob

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I don't post much anymore
And I almost resent your for it lol. I miss your posts. They're always well thought out, beyond reproach when it comes to "sourcing" and teaches a lot of us shirt we'd never have known if you hadn't posted it.

Regardless, thanks for the post. Hope to see you around a little more often. Of course real life takes precedence, so do you and I hope you're living the best life possible.
 

SaintForLife

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Serious question. Can someone support the people's right to protest as well as the need for police reform and also be concerned about the people who are rioting, looting and commiting vandalism?
 

Taurus

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Serious question. Can someone support the people's right to protest as well as the need for police reform and also be concerned about the people who are rioting, looting and commiting vandalism?
Absolutely. It's just really difficult to keep the Proud Boogaloos from showing up. And wreaking havoc.
I mean, if keeping the peace is your goal, you'd take special care to intercept AR-toting skinheads, right?
Of course if your goal is to teach them uppity negroes a lesson, you'd give the Nazis a pass, maybe even coordinate with them.
 

The moose

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Serious question. Can someone support the people's right to protest as well as the need for police reform and also be concerned about the people who are rioting, looting and commiting vandalism?

I don't see why not.
I would think the BLM protesting don't want or back the burning and looting.

The only problem here is if you are against BLM then you must be for the mass incarcerated minorities and police brutality. Really no middle ground to stand on.

Everyone wants to harp about freedoms yet we have the most imprisoned people in the developed world by a mile. Some certainly have less when it comes to freedoms and that definitely needs to change.
 

SaintForLife

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Absolutely. It's just really difficult to keep the Proud Boogaloos from showing up. And wreaking havoc.
I mean, if keeping the peace is your goal, you'd take special care to intercept AR-toting skinheads, right?
Of course if your goal is to teach them uppity negroes a lesson, you'd give the Nazis a pass, maybe even coordinate with them.
I'm sure those right wing groups are causing havoc, but from the videos I've seen they don't appear to be the ones causing damage to property.
 

SaintForLife

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Videos by Andy Ngo?
Nope. I've posted videos from other's after people complained when I posted Ngo's videos eventhough Ngo linked to the orginal source videos in his tweets. Go look at them in the Portland thread.
 

MT15

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I wonder how you are determining the exact political stances of the people you see destroying property in the online videos you are watching?
 

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