Everything surrounding the violence and unrest in Charlotte has been fairly predictable – including most people’s reactions.
People now tend to be already decided, before these things even happen, whether they believe the entire thing is an externally-orchestrated ‘civil unrest’ conspiracy or whether it is a legitimate social justice movement responding to known and widely circulated instances of police brutality.
The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. And it is sad that so many people – including commentators and online theorists – seem to have an inability to find that middle-ground reality and instead plunge headlong into one camp or the other, depending on their own biases and ingrained agendas.
Unlike some of the rabid, agenda-driven conspiracy websites out there, I try to be more careful not to make generalisations about large groups of people. It is important to differentiate between genuine, legitimate protesters and violent, criminal rioters. Because the events in Charlotte, like in Baltimore and like in Ferguson, clearly involved both.
And agenda-pushers, like the insidious ‘conspiracy celebrity’ Paul Joseph Watson of Info Wars and Prison Planet, casually depict the entire Black Lives Matter movement as ‘terrorists’ or agents of chaos as if no one attending such protests is actually upset about unjust police killings of citizens.
I’ve covered this before, including the divide-and-conquer psy-op being conducted by the likes of Watson and Info Wars themselves, as well as the well documented reality of police racism and KKK connections in some key instances. But I also fully acknowledged both the possibility of COINTELPRO style co-opting of the protests and the role of quesionable influences – such as, potentially, billionaire George Soros – in funding and pushing the BLM agenda.
In fact the Soros connection is pretty much plain fact by this point.
Clearly, much of the MSM’s depiction of the Charlotte unrest as ‘peaceful protest’ is ludicrous. But that doesn’t mean plenty of people in attendance weren’t peaceful protesters; rather, it is simply a case that when violent infiltrators and troublemakers go on the rampage and set a town on fire, it is they who will draw all the attention and characterise the entire event.
There have been plenty of other BLM-led protests, most of which have been peaceful, and some of which haven’t been.
Therefore the majority of people in BLM or involving themselves in the issue clearly aren’t intent on violent rampages – no matter how much Watson or other right-wing commentators try to insist otherwise.
That doesn’t negate the movement – at the organisational level – being orchestrated by less-than-trustworthy minds and agendas; but it doesn’t mean every ordinary person who takes up the BLM banner in the US is knowingly colluding with outside agencies or COINTELPRO style operations.
Right-wing demonisation of everyone involved in protest is therefore both stupid and clearly indicative of a predisposition towards dividing social or political issues along racial lines. The BLM movement could be accused of dividing along the same racial lines; but the primary events they are protesting against – the documented and unlawful execution of a number of citizens – are nevertheless there in plain sight.
That being said, the footage of the chaos in Charlotte is genuinely unsettling: and for me personally, hits me with a touch of deja vu, as I was unfortunately caught up in the events of the 2011 London/UK riots, to which the Charlotte riots seem very similar in character.
The reality of mass rioting, looting, violence and feral behaviour, when you’re staring it in the face is very unsettling. The unrest in London in 2011 (pictured below) lasted for days and spread to various other cities too. There was a point where we didn’t know how long it was going to go on for – and that uncertainty can be particularly unsettling.
Getting back to Charlotte specifically, a spokesman for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Fraternal Order of Police revealed that the people causing all the chaos and destruction were outside actors. “This is not Charlotte that’s out here. These are outside entities that are coming in and causing these problems. These are not protestors, these are criminals. We’ve got the instigators that are coming in from the outside. They were coming in on buses from out of state. If you go back and look at some of the arrests that were made last night. I can about say probably 70% of those had out-of-state IDs. They’re not coming from Charlotte.”
This suggests the likelihood that the initial protest had no real connection with what later happened and was intended to be orderly and peaceful: and that it was only when these gangs of outside troublemakers were bused in that the trouble started.
This could suggest these external actors bused in were directly serving the ‘hidden agenda’ of external agencies – and hijacking what would’ve been a relatively peaceful protest in order to turn it into something else – or, alternatively, that they were unknowingly servicing that agenda.
On the other hand, they could just be very well-organised gangs of criminals, thugs and troublemakers serving their own nihilistic agenda and not that of an external agency.
I say this as someone who, again, experienced the London riots of 2011 up close. I had the misfortune of living at that time in the precise area where the riots started before spreading across London and eventually England itself. In that instance, a police shooting of a Black man in Tottenham (who, it turned out, was a local criminal and may have had a gun at the time) had provoked a fairly small and peaceful gathering/protest – but this protest was soon swamped by criminals, street gangs and thugs from all over London, who came to the scene en masse and in what must’ve been a pre-arranged invasion organised via social media and mobile apps.
In the hours and days that followed, violence, mass looting, vandalism, arson and robberies spread across different boroughs of the city and soon spread also to multiple cities.
I witnessed a lot of this first-hand: and the overwhelming majority of people involved had no idea what the original protest was about. They were simply thugs and low-lifes who saw an opportunity to run riot and rob stores, particularly as the overwhelmed police force seemed able to do very little to intervene.
I bring this up because it is highly unlikely that those events in London/England were an externally orchestrated conspiracy or social agenda – because nothing was gained by it and the government didn’t use these events to accomplish anything or push through any kind of dodgy emergency legislation. It was simply a case of all the feral, criminal vermin of these communities deciding to join in the carnage and take advantage of the opportunity to run riot.
Something similar could easily be the case in Charlotte, or could’ve easily been the case in Baltimore: simply that you had a gathering of well-meaning protesters and then you had an additional arrival of criminal chaos-mongers who wanted to smash and burn things and cause trouble.
Again, I’ll make the same point I made before: the actual BLM supporters who are interested in social justice or police accountability would have nothing to gain from endorsing or being involved with the violence or acts of destruction, which are entirely counter to their interests or their cause.
It is, at any rate, clear that the rioting and chaos was the work of outside elements and not those who live and work in Charlotte.
This is the view also taken by the Mayor of Charlotte, Jennifer Roberts, who voiced her shock at the nature of the events. “Charlotte is a city that has worked very hard to build good community police relations,” she told the BBC. “We have been a model of community policing. We have actually trained other police forces. This is not who we are as Charlotteans and I’m hoping we can move past these protests very quickly, move into more peaceful protests and back into dialogue.”
It’s worth remembering that, in the case of the Dallas shootings, that too was a peaceful protest which happened to be interrupted by a sniper who wanted to attack police: and that the Dallas Police Department was actually regarded to be one of the most progressive and reformed police departments in the country, which made the attack on police officers all the more unjustified.
Going beyond the issue of the police killings, there is of course a potentially even broader danger in these kinds of events.
If civil breakdowns like Charlotte were to occur in multiple locations at a time or with much more frequency, the level of general anxiety and aggression would be substantial: and could give authorities and government the premise for heavy, militarised response.
This is where the possibility or suspicion of orchestrated unrest along the lines of Hegelian Dialectic comes in. In Charlotte, as in Baltimore before, the National Guard was called in and curfews were imposed.
That’s essentially the ingredients for Martial Law – which could be necessitated on a larger scale if these kinds of events multiplied in either frequency or geography.
And all of this could also, as many have suggested, be being timed to run alongside what is pretty much the most toxic, divisive presidential election in generations. But, aside from the more popular suspicions that civil unrest would service Hillary or even Obama (and might even lead to a cancelled election and a state of emergency), there is also just as much of a possibility that all of this unrest and tension could play into the hands of Donald Trump, who could be embraced as just the archetypal ‘Strong Man’ figure to ‘restore order’.
This is a view taken by Jeremy Carl, writing in National Review. ‘Watching the depressing news of rioting in my beautiful home state of North Carolina,’ he writes, ‘I’m beginning to think that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are secretly conspiring to get Donald Trump elected president.’
State of the Nation, on the other hand, takes the contrary view that the unrest is being – and will be – agitated towards thwarting a Trump victory and playing into the hands of Hillary and the Democrat establishment.
Which just demonstrates that these things that can be skewed to suit whichever side you want to implicate. There are so many variations of this orchestrated chaos theme doing the rounds that navigating them is becoming like a pinball machine.
The possibility is palpable, however, that – whichever presidential candidate wins – this mounting unrest could be the catalyst for some degree of more pronounced Martial Law.
How much of all of it has been deliberately agitated and how much is simply an unfortunate process of cause and effect is debatable.
It could actually, getting back to the theme that began this post, be both: in that these problems have come from natural cause-and-effect events at the street level, but are being used and manipulated as a useful tool at the same time. In other words, the instances of trigger-happy, racist or badly trained police officers executing unarmed people without just cause are genuinely – and rightly – provoking mass protest and outrage (the fact that the police are hesitating to make the video footage of Keith Lamont Scott’s killing public doesn’t do much to make them seem innocent in the matter); but that outside agencies can co-opt or harness that protest and outrage for their own purposes and are possibly doing so.
The footage of violent rioters dragging and assaulting a seemingly random white guy was presumably not the actions of the initial BLM protesters but some of the thugs that were bused in: it is also possible that specific incidents like that one are stage-managed or encouraged by conspirators in order to further inflame and incite racial tension and division (in this case, from ‘the other side’) and keep everything bubbling towards spillover.