Safety concerns neccesitate end to protests, violence

Threat to those involved should be main priority

Shoshi Leviton

For over two weeks, protesters stationed themselves outside the 4th Precinct in North Minneapolis and City Hall following the shooting of Jamar Clark Nov. 15. Since then, the violence continues.

White supremacists shot five protesters Nov. 23 purely for attending the protest. People should not risk their lives because they want to show support.

Protests that arouse violence must stop. Public safety or safety of protesters should come first. The longer protests continue, the more chance there is for continued loss and suffering.

In Ferguson, Missouri the protests after the shooting of Michael Brown continued well after the Aug. 9, 2014 tragedy. Two police officers were shot March 12, 2015 outside of a protest near the police station. Nearly seven months later and shots were still being fired.

The protests need to end in order to prevent the loss of any more lives: protester or police officer. Rep. Keith Ellison (D) and Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges have both called for an end to the protests.

Although escalating violence necessitated an end to the protests, Clark’s investigation should continue. It is important that what happened to Clark be fully uncovered, but it shouldn’t come with the risk of losing more lives at a protest.

The goal of Justice for Jamar is very legitimate, but would be more effectively reached through a federal investigation instead of an increasingly dangerous protest.

Police data recently collected by the Star Tribune showed a  decrease in police response times throughout Minneapolis during the height of the protests. Clearly, the protest also endangers those uninvolved in the matter.

There are other ways to show support for these causes besides protesting, such as lobbying local representatives and senators, speaking to local police and voicing support on social media.

It is important to stand up in the face of injustice, but safety cannot be overlooked in these cases.