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Rantz: Defund Seattle police activists are acting like terrorists

Protesters march near the King County Juvenile Detention Center, Saturday, July 25, 2020, in Seattle in support of Black Lives Matter and against police brutality and racial injustice. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

Some defund Seattle police activists are threatening public officials by showing up to their homes. Their intent? Intimidate politicians into supporting their position. One councilmember was even threatened with physical injury if he didn’t vote the way they demanded.

Activists are also publishing personal information of officers, including phone numbers. The intent? Harassment.

The conduct comes awfully close to the textbook definition of domestic terrorism. In some cases, I think it meets the definition. It’s no way to act. And it’s certainly not a peaceful protest.

Thankfully, no one has been hurt by the tactic. But, the dangerous mob rule tactic is escalating and if it doesn’t stop, there likely will be injuries.

Defund Seattle police activists threaten, dox

Seattle councilmembers and the mayor have faced an angry mob of fringe activists marching to their homes demanding they adapt their radical positions on policing.

Some councilmembers who ideologically identify with the mob, like Lisa Herbold, Teresa Mosqueda, and Tammy Morales, went out to speak with them. Others, like Councilmember Alex Pedersen and Mayor Jenny Durkan, say they felt threatened by the angry group (and their vandalism).

Council President Lorena Gonzalez said Pedersen faced, “Threats of physical or serious bodily injury if he did not vote in a particular way.” His home was the target of vulgar messages, too.

Similarly, Councilmember Debora Juarez faced what tribal leaders and Native organizations called “intimidation acts,” like targeted street graffiti and late-night shouting into a bullhorn. She also faced sexist, misogynistic smears by activists who normally and unironically shout their tolerance.

Mayor Durkan faced similar threats, including “Guillotine Jenny” tagged nearby.

Police officers, meanwhile, are routinely doxxed. Sometimes their information, including phone numbers and addresses, are posted online by defund Seattle police activists.

The Police Chief isn’t immune to the harassment either. A mob tried to show up to SPD Chief Carmen Best’s Snohomish County home, only to be rebuffed by armed neighbors. The mob learned Snohomish County residents don’t quite put up with the nonsense Seattle will accept.

Socialist Tammy Morales defends the mob

Socialist councilmember Tammy Morales defended the weekend mob as they tried to intimidate Chief Best.

“I have to say, I take exception to the response by our police chief, who celebrated that her neighbors met these young people with guns when they were exercising their First Amendment right to peacefully protest on a city street,” Morales said. “I know that this is a hard time for all of us, … we won’t agree with everyone, but I think we need to make sure that these young people are not met with armed neighbors … when they are asking for things from their elected officials.”

I hope someone clues in Morales that Best isn’t an elected official. She seems confused.

And Washington is an open-carry state. Neighbors with a reasonable suspicion that a dangerous mob poses a threat get to defend themselves. The defund police activists weren’t in Seattle. Their brand of “peaceful” protests won’t work in Snohomish County.

Rantz: Shock poll shows only 32% support to defund SPD by half

Dangerous and ineffective

The defund Seattle police agitators turn to this tactic because it’s the only way they can win their argument.

On its own merits, defunding or abolishing the police is a failed argument. It’s why so many polls show little support, even in Progressive Seattle. Shouting invective at cops or chanting bumper sticker slogans is one thing. Having a meaningful debate on your policy prescriptions is a different ballgame. The agitators can’t win in a debate of ideas. They don’t even think there should be a debate. So they try to harass you into submission.

When you use violence or the threat of violence to intimidate someone in the name of your ideology, you’re in terrorism territory. This isn’t shocking; the intent is to terrorize. And at some point, these agitators are going to try to terrorize the wrong person and it won’t end well. They almost learned that in Snohomish County.

But beyond being dangerous and un-American, it’s a bad tactic.

Protests intent on harassing and bullying won’t win people over to your side. Indeed, it pushes them farther away. Burning down construction trailers, bashing storefronts, and throwing explosives at police precincts don’t bring your side together. It’s a reason why the protests two weeks ago lost about half the crowd when they went from a peaceful march to a dangerous, violent riot.

And if area leaders don’t step up — or, in the very least, stop defending the tactic — it’s only going to get worse.

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show weekday afternoons from 3-6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (or HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here. Follow @JasonRantz on Twitter and Instagram or like me on Facebook

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