When Chicago raised bridges and closed expressway on-ramps to avert more riots it pushed the city’s BLM protests, which are too often hijacked by criminals intent on looting and vandalism, into otherwise quiet residential suburbs and neighborhoods. Fox 32 Chicago reports the move by authorities resulted in several groups staging in nearby Englewood, where they were stopped by predominantly black residents who told them to get out of town.
“Expletives were dropped, and there was pushing and shoving, which forced the protesters to retreat,” according to the station’s coverage. Daryl Smith, who has lived in the neighborhood for 51 years told the protesters, “If you ain’t from Englewood, get the F*** out of here.” Charles McKenzie told the reporter, “We refuse to let anyone come to Englewood and tear it up.”
The Chicago Tribune reports it was the second night the city blocked access to its famed Loop area with moves that also included shutting down parts of Lake Shore Drive. The decision was, “…an effort to prevent another night of looting downtown,” according to the newspaper.
BlockClubChicago.org interviewed lifelong Englewood resident Keith Harris. “They’re agitators,” he said about the protesters. “Their heart might be in the right place, but they are being led down the wrong road. They need to be led in a different direction.”
A story from the Daily Mail indicates some protesters are not interested in removing criminals from their protests. “Ariel Atkins, a BLM organizer, called the looting ‘reparations,’” according to its report. “I don’t care if someone decides to loot a Gucci or a Macy’s or a Nike store, because that makes sure that person eats,” Atkins told the British website. “That makes sure that person has clothes.”
Chicago isn’t the only place where BLM violence has come to the suburbs. The Oregonian reports, “…the location of the main action has shifted from downtown to residential neighborhoods on the east side of the Willamette River, bringing crowds of demonstrators and a heavy police force onto usually quiet nighttime streets.”
And things took a frightening turn, when rioters attacked a man after allegedly coming to the aid of a woman on Aug. 16 who was robbed.